OK, so it is time to address Griffey. Yes, I like Ken Griffey Jr. As a human being there is no better person. If all of us were half the person he is in what he does for people this world would be a much better place.
I’ve kept quiet for a long time about the postings about Griffey - even when a supposed friend accuses me of protecting him because he is a friend or some moron accusing him of giving me a car.
No. 1 - Griffey does not loaf. No, he doesn’t run hard. Why? The guy has two screws keeping his butt attached to his leg. He has had surgery on every ligament, muscle and moving part in both legs. It is a miracle he can run as fast as he does.
Nobody said he didn’t care or had a poor attitude when he was a superstar. His attitude was exactly the same then as it is now. He is not an outwardly emotional person. Does he have to jump up and down and do somersaults to show people he cares. I know he cares. Losing kills him. Not doing well, not helping his team, hurts him even more.
What do people want him to do, apologize because he isn’t hitting home runs or driving in runs?
No. 2 - He is not a cancer in the clubhouse and he is not a bad influence. He is one of the most positive guys in that room and shares his thoughts and experiences with all his teammates, young and old. He is probably the best-liked guy in the clubhouse by his teammates.
And let’s quit saying, trade him, move him to Seattle. He isn’t going. Understand that. He isn’t going. He has said he won’t go to Seattle. So it is moot and it is a waste of effort and breath to keep saying trade him.
He’ll be with the Reds the rest of the season and then he’ll be gone. The Reds aren’t likely to pick up his option.
And if I like the guy, so sue me. He has meant an awful lot to this game and meant an awful lot to scores of people he has helped - without making a big issue out of it or seeking publicity about it.
I’ve never covered a guy who likes to talk about himself less than Griffey does. Talk about other people, fine. Talk about his accomplishments? Go talk to somebody else.
Unfortunately, most baseball fans can only see the surface. What is the guy doing for me now? That’s true, to a point. Are Griffey’s skills diminished? Yes. Injuries and age have taken the inevitable toll.
But the Reds won’t take him out back and shoot him. He’ll be gone after this year and the fans who are always looking for a fall guy can turn their sights on somebody else.
And he has never bought me so much as a cup of coffee, let alone a car. Besides, I can’t drive a car, remember?