Funny you ask that, Ichiro was asked by former teamate, Brett Boone, "What if 1st base was where 3rd base was?" Ichiro said he would retire if that ever happened since he perfected his swing and and his sprint to 1st base so he didn't waste one single step.http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/eticket/ ... hiro&num=1
Ichiro bats left-handed because he's a natural slapper (moreso than righthanders who bat left-handed because that swing uses the right arm more for power)...so he slaps the ball the opposite way. He's a righty, since he throws righty. If the bases were the other way around, Ichiro would've probably come up batting righty instead...which would likely be even more natural for him. Running out of the box while slapping it to the right from the right side would be the same idea. That is, since batting right-handed for a natural righty would give him more control over the bat, while batting left-handed for a natural righty would give him more power.
In college softball, a scary amount of righties are lefty slappers. That is the way that game is played...and how Ichiro plays baseball. Of course, the slap is basically going the other way with the ball while running out of the box. In baseball, Ichiro actually has to poke it through the infield a lot, while a nice, lengthy, high bounce will result in a hit in softball for fast runners.
Really interesting question, though, whatever the answer is. Tavish's response seems very reasonable.
Last edited by warrick95 on Tue Aug 02, 2005 12:41 am, edited 1 time in total.