Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Ichiro and the pursuit of 3000

I was reading this article about Ichiro Suzuki's pursuit of 3000 hits. Ichiro Suzuki is a Major League Baseball player who has played professionally in Japan and North America. Currently he is two safe hits away from 3000 in Major League Baseball. Only 29 players have ever done that in the more than 100 years of Major League Baseball.

There has been some controversy in that Pete Rose who holds the record of over 4000 hits has said that Ichiro's hits in professional baseball in Japan should not count and that he is still the king.

Whatever! American sports seem to like their statistics and with the exception of a few sports, it is only been in the last few years that sports like rugby union and football (soccer) have used statistics on their broadcasts. I wonder if that is an American influence.

What I enjoyed about the article is this sentence:

Ichiro isn’t exactly one to publicly throw shade at other players, nor is he one to say something without thinking it through, so that makes his take on the situation even more intriguing.

What do you think?

Basically he is describing his experience of playing baseball in North America. He said that people will encourage you as you are striving for the record but when you get there they will start attacking you. That's interesting, isn't it? For New Zealanders, doesn't that sound suspiciously like the tall poppy syndrome that our top achievers have to negotiate as they climb the totem pole in their respective professions?

I like the fact that the article says that Ichiro doesn't do anything without thinking about it. I wonder if Ichiro is indeed an introvert as that is one of the characteristics of an introvert.

What we know is that introverts can be very cerebral and they think a lot about things and when something comes out it is usually worth listening to as is shown in this Ichiro example.

Because of his apparent introversion, we know that Ichiro won't be engaging in any media slanging match. He will pick his words carefully and at the end of the day let his bat and his glove do the talking which we should all be doing, letting our tools of our trade do the talking. Unfortunately some people want to tell everyone how good they are or used to be and this sets off these media fights that we see from time to time. They can be entertaining for a short time but then they can just be down right boring.

Pick your battles and if you have to say something, make sure you think about it and choose your words carefully. I know that I don't handle confrontation well so I don't like getting into these kinds of things. I'm sure Ichiro doesn't either.

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