Re: Griffey #500 countdown
I love the quote at the end of this story. Go get 'em Griffey!! :GAC:
Griffey passes Gehrig on homer list
By Tim Reynolds
The Associated Press
MIAMI – The history meant little to Ken Griffey Jr. The victory meant plenty.
Griffey passed Lou Gehrig on the career home run list Monday, hitting a go-ahead, three-run drive in the seventh inning in Cincinnati’s 9-7 victory over Florida.
It was the 13th home run of the season for Griffey and the 494th of his career, moving him into sole possession of 20th place.
“Anytime you get a ’W,’ that’s the most important thing,” Griffey said. “I just happened to hit one out.”
The Reds snapped the Marlins’ five-game winning streak and tied Florida for the National League lead at 30-21.
Sean Casey homered twice, raised his major league-leading average to .394, and had three RBIs. Barry Larkin and Wily Mo Pena also homered for Cincinnati, which overcame a 5-0 deficit.
Jeff Conine went 4-for-4, Juan Pierre and Luis Castillo had three hits each, and Mike Lowell had three RBIs for the Marlins, who stranded 11 runners – five in the seventh and eighth innings.
“We just couldn’t keep the ball in the ballpark,” Marlins manager Jack McKeon said. “We got offense today. We didn’t get the pitching.”
Cincinnati was down by five runs after two innings.
The Reds got a three-run homer from Casey in the third, a solo shot by Pena in the fourth and back-to-back solo homers from Larkin and Casey in the sixth. Florida answered with two runs in the sixth, going up 7-6 on Lowell’s RBI single.
But Griffey struck the final blow, connecting off Florida reliever Justin Wayne (3-2), who hadn’t allowed a run in his four previous outings. Larkin singled with one out, Casey walked and Griffey followed with the go-ahead homer to right-center.
“You make bad pitches and bad things happen,” Wayne said.
Todd Jones worked out of a bases-loaded, no-outs jam in the seventh and stranded two more Florida runners in the eighth, and Danny Graves worked a perfect ninth for his 24th save. John Riedling (4-0) got the win, despite walking four while retiring just three batters.
“We made some mistakes,” Reds manager Dave Miley said. “Obviously, it wasn’t the prettiest of wins.”
Castillo, Pierre, Lowell and Conine – four of the top five hitters in Florida’s order – combined to go 12-for-17 in the game. The rest of the Marlins went 2-for-22, and it was that half of the lineup that failed Florida in the seventh.
With the bases loaded, Ramon Castro, who lowered his average to .135 with an 0-for-4 day, struck out, as did pinch-hitter Lenny Harris. Castillo grounded into a fielders’ choice, ending the inning.
“It comes down to making pitches,” Jones said. “Today I made them. Some days you don’t.”
Griffey said he wasn’t drawing inspiration from the pursuit of Gehrig or moving closer to the 500-homer plateau. Instead, it was the souvenir World Series championship rings the Marlins handed out to fans.
“They’ve got something that I want, and they were showing it today – that big ’ol ring,” Griffey said. “That’s what I play this game for. Individual accomplishments are going to take care of themselves. I want that championship.”