Let’s be clear here: I’m no a baseball fan. I’ve never even watched an entire game, and I genuinely don’t understand the appeal of the sport, but by Zeus’ beard that Ichiro guy has got some skills.
As part of a television commerical for Japanese health tonic Yunker, Ichiro performs a few tricks, showing the world what true talent really looks like and leaving us all open-mouthed as he pitches with speed and accuracy that many players could only dream of.
We’re sure that no amount of health tonic alone could produce effects quite like this, but Sato, the company behind Yunker, is on to a sure-fire hit with this commercial.
Take a look at the following video, which shows Japan’s most famous baseball player take out four bats standing on end in a row before moving on to knock the lid of a bin with one ball before landing a second firmly in the basket.
The man’s a demon…
This is why Ichiro is one of Japan’s national treasures!
We watched the video back to back three times before our native cynicism kicked in. “Wait! Could this have been faked!? Is this just some amazing trick!?”
We went back to the video to analyse it in painstaking detail.
1. Four bats stand in the distance, waiting to be toppled. With a snarl, Ichiro leaps into action.
2. And here’s the pitch!
3. Before the first bat hits the ground he’s receiving another ball.
4. The second bat down, a ball curves in to take out the third.
5. He’s done it! Just one to go! Surely he can’t pull this off!?
6. Pssh! ‘course he can!
OK, that looks pretty genuine to us! If I wasn’t a fan of Ichiro before, I am now.
Of course, this video wasn’t captured on the first take, but pulling these tricks off even once is absolutely mind-blowing.
We’ll leave you with a additional video from the Yunker’s “Miracle Throw” promotional website, showing the “making of.” Even though our man Ichiro doesn’t quite pull the tricks off first time, it’s still a joy to watch. Enjoy!