Baseball: Ichiro to be inducted into Mariners Hall of Fame

© Kyodo News

The Seattle Mariners will induct Japan's Ichiro Suzuki into the team's Hall of Fame during the 2022 season, the organization said Wednesday.

The 48-year-old from Aichi Prefecture will be honored in a pregame ceremony on Aug. 27 when the Mariners face the Cleveland Guardians, the team that played as the Cleveland Indians until the end of the 2021 season, at T-Mobile Park in Seattle.

Suzuki played 12 of his 18-plus MLB seasons in Seattle before retiring in March 2019, announcing the end of his playing career where it began -- in Japan. In total, he played more than 27 seasons across two continents.

Suzuki was a 10-time MLB All-Star, 10-time Gold Glove winner, won two batting titles and was the 2001 Rookie of the Year and MVP in his debut season with the Mariners. He also played for the New York Yankees and Miami Marlins.

He collected numerous personal accolades throughout his career but never won a World Series. He remains Seattle's franchise leader in hits (2,542), batting average (.321), at-bats (7,907), triples (79), and stolen bases (438).

"Mariners fans were fortunate to have watched Ichiro Suzuki perform his magic at the plate and in the field for over a decade in a Mariners uniform," Mariners Chairman and Managing General Partner John Stanton said in a statement.

"As the first position player to transition from Japan to Major League Baseball, Ichiro opened minds and won hearts of American fans with his brilliant play and dedication to his craft. His selection to the Mariners Hall of Fame was unanimous, and I fully expect Ichiro to take his place in Cooperstown on the first ballot in 2025."

Cooperstown is a village in the state of New York where the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum is located.

Suzuki will become the 10th member of the Mariners Hall of Fame after Alvin Davis, Dave Niehaus, Jay Buhner, Edgar Martinez, Randy Johnson, Dan Wilson, Ken Griffey Jr., Lou Piniella and Jamie Moyer.

Suzuki, who currently holds the title of special assistant to the chairman, will be eligible to be elected into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2025.