Overshadowed by the hype surrounding Suzuki’s run at history, Edgar Martinez will say goodbye to Seattle this weekend as the Mariners wrap up a regular season-ending three-game series with the Texas Rangers at Safeco Field.
Suzuki broke Sisler’s 84-year-old Friday night as he picked up hits No. 257 and 258 in consecutive at-bats. He added his 259th for good measure, boosting his major league-leading average to .373 as fans at Safeco and in Japan celebrated wildly.
“Through my career, I think this is the best moment,” said Suzuki, whose record-breaking hit sparked a six-run rally in the third inning that helped Seattle to an 8-3 win. “I can’t really put it into words.”
Martinez quietly went 2-for-5 with a run scored and an RBI on Friday night, much as he has been doing for his entire 18-year career with the Mariners. The franchise’s all-time leader in batting average, hits, doubles, walks and games will head into retirement after the season.
“Edgar’s history is Mariners history,” said club president Chuck Armstrong. “If you visualize any significant Mariners event in the last two decades, Edgar is there.”
After sitting out a week with a broken right toe, Martinez returned to the lineup on Sept. 25, and has gone 7-for-27 (.259) while hitting safely in five of six games.
Saturday had been set aside in advance as Edgar Martinez Day at Safeco, and fortunately for the long-time designated hitter, he won’t have to contend with Suzuki for the crowd’s attention.
“All good things have to come to an end, but it’s going to be a tough day for all of us when he isn’t in a Mariners uniform,” said catcher Dan Wilson, a teammate of Martinez’s since 1993. “It will be tough to see him go.”
Seattle has won seven of its last 10 games, avoiding its first 100-loss season since 1983.
The Rangers, officially eliminated from playoff contention earlier this week, have lost five of six.