Yusei Kikuchi crying while saying goodbye to Ichiro will immediately bring you to tears
Make sure you've got a box of tissues nearby for this one, because it's about to get stuffy in here. During the Mariners-Athletics Japan Opening Series game on Thursday morning, reports began to surface that Ichiro Suzuki -- he of 4,367 hits and 27 professional baseball seasons -- planned on retiring after the Opening Series ends.
As word spread, the Tokyo Dome crowd hung on every Ichiro at-bat. Finally, in the top of the eighth, the future Hall of Famer finished his career with a groundout to shortstop -- that he almost, almost, almost beat out. Oh, how amazing it would have been to end his career with an infield single.
But don't worry, we still got that amazing sendoff everyone was hoping for.
The following inning, the Mariners had the legendary outfielder jog out to right field for one final farewell before taking him out of the game. Ichiro then went player-by-player saying goodbye to all his teammates, many of whom were tearing up themselves.
His embrace with fellow countryman Yusei Kikuchi -- who made his own big league debut earlier in that same game -- was unforgettable. For a young Japanese pitcher, who grew up watching and very much idolizes Ichiro, it was a quite an emotional moment.
Oh my god Kikuchi crying while hugging Ichiro goodbye. Be still my heart. 😭😭😭 pic.twitter.com/lkQAiUc8E8— Cespedes Family BBQ (@CespedesBBQ) March 21, 2019
If anyone needs me, I'll be sobbing uncontrollably into my Ichiro shirsey. What a wonderful, wonderful career he had.
Jake Mintz is the louder half of the Cespedes Family BBQ. Despite a torn UCL in his right elbow, he still finds a way to tweet excessively during baseball games.