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Report: Ken Griffey Jr. to retire or be released sometime this month

May 10, 2010, 3:09 PM EDT

Ken Griffey Jr. swing.jpgA pretty major story from Larry LaRue of the Tacoma News-Tribune in which it is reported that the Seattle Mariners will soon urge Ken Griffey, Jr. to retire, and if he doesn’t they’ll release him, most likely this month.

LaRue says “the end is near” for Griffey.  The reasons: For one thing, obvious lack of performance. He’s at .205/.265/.234 in 77 at-bats this season with only two extra-base hits
and zero home runs. The man simply can’t hit anymore, as it’s plain to anyone who can read a stat sheet or watch a baseball game. This, of course, is not shocking. More shocking: 

Last week, when some members of the press corps asked
manager Don Wakamatsu why he hadn’t used Griffey as a pinch hitter for
Rob Johnson late in a game, Waskamatsu was vague.

Two Mariners players, however, weren’t. Both are younger players,
fond of Griffey. Neither had an ax to grind.

So why didn’t Wakamatsu go to Junior off the bench.

“He was asleep in the clubhouse,” one player said. “He’d gone back
about the fifth inning to get a jacket and didn’t come back. I went back
in about the seventh inning – and he was in his chair, sound asleep.”

For a man whose value at this point in his career was supposed to be his veteran presence and stability, that’s shockingly poor behavior.

The Mariners just fired their hitting coach. If they insist on keeping Griffey around they could offer him that job. If not, they should make him an ultimatum: quit or be fired.  Because there is no place on a Major League roster for someone who pulls crap like that.

Even a Hall of Famer.

191 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. glenn - May 11, 2010 at 5:33 AM

    craig, you need to brush up on your reading skills. that was a commentary piece about what one guy speculates that the m’s might do, not a news story.

  2. TLT - May 11, 2010 at 7:07 AM

    I am sure most viewers were asleep atleast an inning before Griffey was…

  3. Steve In Danville, KY - May 11, 2010 at 7:24 AM

    Jr, has a history of NO drugs, NO bad news stories, and has busted his rear end for baseball and has been NOTHING but a class act in all things baseball, he was treated like Crap in Cincy, yet never lost his cool or bad mouthed anyone. Thanks Jr. and God Bless and good luck in anything you do.

  4. lin - May 11, 2010 at 8:34 AM

    shame people always like downgrade players ever consider he has health issue and not know he got it? they need have him check out first b4 throwing the towels at him. there is a reason people. if no problem then up to mgr etc. do what they must.

  5. Griffey fan - May 11, 2010 at 8:59 AM

    Watching Kenny grow up and surpass his father has been pure joy! He has been alot of fun to watch on both the Mariners and the Reds. But we all get tired/sleepy when we are BORED out of our minds just sitting around doing nothing. So please- check him out for sleep apnea and get him INTO the game! Maybe a batting coach position in the minors is where he could be doing the most for the Mariners. And as far as those young guys are concerned- a little respect please- when you have played as long as Kenny, Junior has, THEN you can make fun…and not a day before!!!

  6. MetsFan - May 11, 2010 at 9:23 AM

    Then the Mets should fire Keith Hernandez, who fell asleep in the booth while broadcasting a Mets game. Hernandez is a proffessional who should not be falling asleep during a game, extra innings or not! Perhaps he is spending too much time on those lame and embarrassing “Just For Men” commercials.

  7. Mike from Mass - May 11, 2010 at 10:01 AM

    Dude, you play softball once, maybe twice, as a hack weekend warrior. You can’t relate your “career” or napping habits to his at ALL. This guy has played for how long now? 20 years? Subtracting injury time, thats probably about 2500 games and basically YEARS on the road. The man is simply bored with the game and past his prime. No big deal. I think he’s been a great player and enjoyed watching him. I’m seeing some extremes here. People saying he’s a bum and no good which ISN’T true. He just doesnt have it anymore. But he WAS great and with the new drug testing and scrutiny, he won’t be able to extend his career through steroids like Bonds and others did. The other extreme is people trying to justify the napping. Diabetes? Thyroid? Big belly? Really? I mean, REALLY? That’s a stretch, folks. He’s just gotten old, lost the passion, lost the bat speed. It happens! To baseball fans: It’s gonna be OK! Life will go on. Let Griffey retire with some dignity and get into the Hall of Fame. We get to watch a whole new generation of players do great things.

  8. Mr Show - May 11, 2010 at 1:24 PM

    A friend who sees the M’s doc told me that the doc has declared Griffey as first class lazy. He has to be pushed to do any kind of workout. His laziness has contributed directly to all of his injuries.
    The guy has no work ethic, and now he has lost his ability to hit or show any passion for the game. He is soiling his own name. He knows he is destined for Cooperstown and doesn’t feel the need to push himself any longer. Being back in Seattle is just vacation for him. There was no reason to bring him on other that sentiment, and sentiment doesn’t win ball games. Send him on his way, he does not deserve even the batting coach job.
    Funny thing, there’s a bobblehead of him coming out soon. Its of his slide in 95 (reclined). Maybe they can close his eyes and give him a pillow.

  9. NERD - May 11, 2010 at 7:31 PM

    T I R E D!!! HA

  10. Jeff from Michigan - May 11, 2010 at 11:58 PM

    Former great hitters of the past, like Ken Griffey Jr., can’t perform up to their steroid induced past performances. Junior, is one more in long, long list of players from the Steroid Era that can’t hit anymore. I love the excuses I’ve read here, sleep apnea, thyroid problem, weight problems, please….stop making excuse for all these juicers in MLB. Let’s not forget the white elephant in the room, the NLF. Someday drug testing is going to catch up with the NLF and we can all watch the average weight come down by at least 30 pounds when it does.

  11. Mike - May 12, 2010 at 10:44 PM

    That was a cheap shot Mr.Craig Calcaterra. Ya, the guy is not in top form and should have retired last year, but he is a living legend in our modern era. Hall of Famer for sure. Plus I grew up watching Griffey smack baseballs in the Kingdom. We loved the guy growing up and still do, but it’s so sad to watch him go another year too long. Peace

  12. Mike - May 14, 2010 at 9:21 PM

    No excuses, please. No one is dishonoring Ken Griffey, Jr’s contributions to the game or his station as an all-time great by noting that he cannot play major league baseball anymore.
    Another point. No one knows if he took steroids or other PE drugs. There is no evidence that he has taken them. His decline is characteristic of a ballplayer who has not taken drugs.
    Yet another point. How do we know that ballplayers in earlier eras did not take drugs. It is widely known that ballplayers in the 1950s, 60s and 70s took amphetamines aka “speed”. Amphetamines may not make the body more physically capable like steroids do. But they do keep you hyper-alert. They might improve reflexes. Probably, they reduce sensitivity to pain.
    How do we know that pre-World War II ballplayers did not have performance-enhancing substances available which do not even know of anymore. Testicular extracts existed in the 19th Century. And come to think of it, how do we know that Mother Methuselah’s Magic Tonic didn’t have some powerful herbal extracts or artificial chemical in it.
    Get with it. Athletes have always been athletes. Winning is very big with them you know.

  13. Steve from Norfolk - May 28, 2010 at 1:55 PM

    Type II diabetes could also produce those symptoms. I have it, and sometimes it happens just like Joey describes – you feel a wave of fatigue and you go inside and pass out.

  14. LC - Jun 2, 2010 at 9:10 PM

    I agree he should have a full physical. Not normal for a man his age to be falling asleep like that. He could also be battling depression. He should know how loved he is in Seattle and know we wish him well. Sad to see the end of an era.

  15. LC - Jun 2, 2010 at 9:11 PM

    I agree he should have a full physical. Not normal for a man his age to be falling asleep like that. He could also be battling depression. He should know how loved he is in Seattle and know we wish him well. Sad to see the end of an era.

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