You can breathe easy now, Mariners fans.

Ichiro managed to get that elusive first hit of spring, ending an 0-for-21 drought. In typical Ichiro fashion, the ice breaker was a slow grounder to second base that he narrowly beat out at first.

Ichiro is now batting a skimpy .043 for the spring, but at least it's not .000. Then again, when you're a perennial All-Star and international icon, you aren't exactly concerned about being demoted to AAA Tacoma.

And you know what? He's not.

> "I'm not sure what my next challenge is," Ichiro said. "Today, my feeling is kind of sad. It's sad to say goodbye [to the hitless streak]. Part of me wishes it would have gone on a little longer."

Ichiro has never exactly been a media darling, but it's nice to see that he at least has a sense of humor about things. Perhaps new teammate Erik Bedard should take note.

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