Seattle Mariners outfielder Ichiro Suzuki, last season’s Most Valuable Player in the American League, left for the United States on Sunday after a two-month break in Japan.

Ichiro was met at Kansai International Airport by a throng of fans who wished to see the Japanese superstar and wish him well on his second season in the major leagues.

Ichiro told reporters that it would be difficult to improve on last year’s performance when he set a rookie record for hits in a single season with 242 and was named the American League Rookie of the Year, but he hinted that he hoped to do better.

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