Ichiro’s batting practice power has been widely discussed in MLB circles since he entered the league in 2001, so much so that entering the home run derby in 2008 was a distinct possibilty.
A finger injury made those plans fall apart 10 years ago, but Mariners manager Scott Servais is hoping to revive those talks.
“We started a campaign the other day. I know a lot of players today don’t want to get into the home run hitting contest,” Servais told MLB Networl Radio.
“Ichiro would be a great addition to the home run hitting contest because he takes BP every day and he is launching balls. It is really fun to watch. That would draw a lot of fans’ interest.”
The hashtag #IchiForDC has become the social media campaign for sending Ichiro to Washington D.C. for this year’s Home Run Derby, and its already received some backing.
? RT if you want ICHIRO in the Home Run Derby [email protected] manager Scott Servais makes the case:#TrueToTheBlue #Mariners #IchiForDC pic.twitter.com/oBoz6XFdiD
— MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM (@MLBNetworkRadio) June 20, 2018
I’d like his chances to win…one of the more impressive BPs to watch! Let’s make it happen! https://t.co/5w9jhK0wBx
— Christian Yelich (@ChristianYelich) June 20, 2018
However, Ichiro retired earlier in the season and doesn’t want to impose.
Ichiro discussing the prospect of him being in this year’s HR Derby:
-Ever respectful, said it would “harm” baseball’s great history if he participated
-Chose Mark Buehrle as his BP pitcher if he did partake
-Joked he’d have to up his lunch from 2 to 3 cheeseburgers to bulk up pic.twitter.com/ENSoPcVRmh
— Matt Kelly (@mattkellyMLB) June 20, 2018
On behalf of baseball fans everywhere, you would not, Ichiro.