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Ichiro the Throwback (7)


 Baseball Crank の2001年5月2日の記事 Ichiro the Throwback の抜書きの続きです(太字は私)。


That's where Ichiro comes in. Maybe he will break Keeler's record (which Keeler set while appearing in just 129 games), and maybe he won't. Perhaps, as the pitchers catch up to him, he won't even hit .300, in which case his lack of power or patience will make him a hitter of little value. Even if he wins the batting title, our understanding of the game has changed too much for legions of imitators to be hailed as an improvement on the Jason Giambis and Carlos Delgados who now rule the American League. And I don't buy the "purist" argument in its purest form, that there's something wrong with winning games by waiting for the three run homer.

 キーラーの記録というのは、1898年のシーズン 206 安打という記録です。この記事が書かれた頃、イチローはシーズン 212 安打のペースと言われていました。*1 記事の筆者は、たとえイチローがその記録を達成しても、現在のホームラン至上主義は変わらないだろうし、「純粋主義者」がいう、3ランで勝つという戦法は間違っているという議論にはくみしないと書いています。


But we should appreciate the slender Japanese right fielder for bringing back a little glamor and pizzazz to the single, the original foundation of baseball's offensive game. There really is an art to spraying the ball to all fields and just dropping balls between fielders, and it can be an entertaining part of a game that is played at its best when teams have a balance of each of its elements. Most comparisons before the season likened Ichiro to Johnny Damon, a player with more patience and more power to the gaps, but the player we see now has more in common with Willie Keeler, George Sisler and Rod Carew. That's not a bad thing.


 今にして思えば、イチローの大リーグ一年目、それも開幕から一ヶ月の時点でこう述べていたというのは、慧眼というほかありません。 (この項おわり)

*1:実際には、イチローは2001年のシーズンは 242 安打、打率3割5分の記録を残した