Ichiro Suzuki turned back the clock and robbed Indians third baseman Jose Ramirez of a home run when the 44-year-old scaled the wall of the Safeco Park to catch the ball in the left field.
That amazing catch proved two things: that age is just a number, and that Suzuki can adequately cover the left field despite being a right fielder all his life.
It’s not quite the feat he accomplished back in May of 2005 when he climbed up the right-field wall like a ninja to rob Garrett Anderson of a home run. But considering his age, this was probably more impressive.
The 10-time Gold Glove and 10-time All-Star returned home to Seattle where he played most of his career after a stint with the New York Yankees and the Miami Marlins. Nothing much was expected from the elder baseball player other than putting some seats in the stands and be the occasional reliever.
He was also relegated to the left field, a position he has little familiarity with.
“I’m just so happy to be able to come to Safeco Field and be able to play the game of baseball,” he said. “Getting to the field every day and getting to play the game — I’m so happy.”
When Seattle manager Scott Servais complimented Suzuki for his amazing play, the future hall-of-famer was dismissive as he said that it was “routine” for him.
Servais said that fans should really appreciate how Suzuki is taking care of his body to still compete at this stage in his career. Coming into the game, he was the second oldest player to suit up on opening day.
“I thought his at-bats were outstanding. He gets the bat on the ball and you keep doing that consistently and you’re going to find some holes,” the manager said.
By the end of the game, Suzuki passed Cap Anson for the most hits in the history of the MLB.