"I hope he arouses the fire that's dormant in the innermost recesses of my soul,'' Ichiro said, in a quote for the ages. "I plan to face him with the zeal of a challenger.''
But don't you love the whole "Samurai" attitude...my God, if he strikes out, does he have to kill himself with his own sword :eek:
The two first faced each other in 1999, when Matsuzaka, an 18-year-old kid barely out of high school, struck out Ichiro three times in a row. Matsuzaka made nine more starts for the Seibu Lions against Ichiro's Orix team over two seasons, and held Ichiro to a cumulative .235 batting average on eight hits in 34 at-bats.