Happy birthday to Ichiro, who turns 36 today!
2009 was a huge year for the mononymous outfielder: he set a major league-record of nine straight seasons with 200 or more hits, finished the season with a league-leading 225 hits, hit his first career walk-off home run (against the Yankees’ Mariano Rivera, no less), and even drew his first career ejection for arguing a called third strike.
But hey, we’re talking about a dude who’s single-handedly proven to Americans that Asians can bring it on the baseball diamond, small ball can be just as captivating as long ball, and pokey ears can be weirdly hot, so Ichiro defying expectations is nothing new.
Speaking of defying expectations, here he is from a few years back telling Bob Costas what his favorite American expression is:
TRANSLASIAN: “August in Kansas City, it’s hotter than two rats in a fucking wool sock.”
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