I am sad to see this day. The best baseball player I have seen live, Ken Griffey, Jr., is retiring after 21 seasons in the “big leagues.” Here is what he had to say via a statement released by the Mariners:
“I’ve come to a decision today to retire from Major League Baseball as an active player. This has been on my mind recently, but it’s not an easy decision to come by. I am extremely thankful for the opportunity to have played Major League Baseball for so long and thankful for all the friendships I have made, while also being proud of my accomplishments.”
Let me run down some of those accomplishments for you. Not including the strike shortened season, from 1993-2000, he went .309AVG 45HR 109RBI, .322AVG 40HR 90RBI, .303AVG 49HR 140RBI, .304AVG 56HR 147RBI, .284AVG 56HR 146RBI, .285AVG 48HR 134RBI, .271AVG 40HR 118RBI.
Junior will finish his career (unless he pulls a Favre on us) with 630 career HR, good for 5th all time, and the prettiest swing I have ever seen.
Things were a bit shaky in his return stint with Seattle, with teammates ratting him out for sleeping in the clubhouse and all, but Griffey will forever remain one of my all-time favorite baseball players. For lack of a better term, it sucks that he had so many issues with injuries because we could all be saying today that the greatest baseball player to ever live has retired. Instead, I will just say that the best player not to fail a drug test (allegedly) has retired today. The game will miss you.
Greg Smith is one of the newest writers and comes from a long background of high school star athletes and arm chair quarterbacks. You can follow Greg on Twitter at http://twitter.com/g_twitty