Japanese outfielder Tomoaki Kanemoto set a record for playing in consecutive games without missing an inning. And Cal Ripken Jr., the player he passed, urged him to keep going.
Kanemoto, who plays for the Hanshin Tigers, extended his streak Sunday of playing every inning of every game to 904 regular-season games in Japanese baseball.
Ripken played in 8,243 straight innings in 903 games from June 5, 1982 to Sept. 14, 1987. That mark is considered a record, although not an official one because the major leagues have not traditionally kept statistics on innings played by nonpitchers.
The Baltimore Orioles great holds the major league record of playing in 2,632 consecutive games. The 38-year-old Kanemoto has played in 1,049 consecutive games, the longest streak by an active player in Japan. Former Hiroshima Carp player Sachio Kinugasa holds the Japanese record at 2,215.
In a ceremony after the game, Hanshin players presented Kanemoto with a bat sent by Ripken. "Congratulations, keep playing," read a handwritten message from Ripken on the bat.