Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Some Cat From Japan
Why did the American League win the All-Star Game last night? Mostly it's because of a speech Ichiro gives before each installment of the Summer Classic - he's played in eight straight now, every year since he came over from Japan in 2001. Only a select few have been privileged to hear the speech:
Every year, after the AL manager addresses his team, Ichiro bursts from his locker, a bundle of kinetic energy, and proceeds, in English, to disparage the National League with an H-bomb of F-bombs, stunning first-timers who had no idea Ichiro speaks the queen’s language fluently and making returnees happy that they had played well enough to see the pep talk again.
The American League is unbeaten in the All-Star game since Ichiro, and his speech, came to these shores. According to the article, Ichiro was asked how much credit his Rockne impersonation deserves for that mark.
“I’ve got to say over 90 percent,” he said. The other 10 percent was Dan Uggla.