This month's issue of ESPN The Magazine is its Special 10th Anniversary Issue, and it features Ichiro on the cover with the text: “For Making Singles Sexy and Taking Baseball Global, Ichiro is a Perfect 10”. Here is a link to a previous 8-page ESPN special feature on Ichiro. He is one of only a few people in all of sports who uses his first name on the back of his uniform, and why not? The man is simply amazing, a baseball living legend in Japan and in the United States. Here is a breakdown of some of his greatest feats since entering the league. 2001, his first year in the Major Leagues, was one for the record books. He led the league in batting average and stolen bases, which was last accomplished by Jackie Robinson. That year he earned League MVP, as well as Rookie of the Year honors. In his seven years here, Ichiro has established himself as arguably the best hitter in the history of baseball. His 242 hits during his rookie season were the most by anyone since 1930, and the most ever by a rookie. In 2004 he set the all-time single season hits record with 262. He has accumulated over 200 hits in every season in the Major Leagues, which so far ties the all-time American League record. If he accumulates another 200 hits this season, he will tie a hits record that has stood for over one hundred years. What many do not know is that Ichiro is also one of the best defensive players in baseball. He has a laser for a throwing arm, and has earned 7 straight Gold Glove Awards, one for every season he has been in the league. Finally, it kind of goes without saying, but Ichiro has also made the All-Star game every single season he has been in the Major Leagues, and was the All-Star game MVP last year.
Ichiro On Cover of ESPN The Magazine's 10th Anniversary Issue