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And Another Thing

Associated Press
New York Yankees' Ichiro Suzuki tips his helmet to the crowd after connecting for his 4,000th career hit Wednesday.

A milestone is a milestone

I know what some people are probably saying this morning, on the occasion of Ichiro Suzuki's 4,000th professional hit.

Yeah, but only 2,722 of those came in the major leagues. The rest were against inferior competition in Japan.

Well, that's true. The first 1,278 hits of his career happened in his native country. And so it's not the same as Pete Rose's all-time record of 4,256, all of which were accrued in the Show.

But you know what?

It's every bit as impressive, and even more so, than the second guy on the all-time hits list.

After all, every one of Ty Cobb's 4,189 hits came in the pre-Jackie Robinson majors. Which means he never had to play against African-Americans. Which means all of his numbers were put up against watered-down competition.

At least Ichiro doesn't have to say that.

Ben Smith's blog.