A PERSONAL NOTE ON JUNIOR
On a personal note…
It hit me yesterday as to how lucky I’ve been to be a card carrying member of the Reds organization from the day Ken Griffey Jr. was acquired from Seattle to the moment last night when he was selected as the newest member of the Baseball Hall of Fame.
I remember being one of the many front office folks in the cramped Crosley Room at Riverfront Stadium (Cinergy Field at the time) where Junior’s press conference was held to announce he had become a Red.
I traveled on Reds road trips when Junior was part of the team. I was in Miami when he hit his 600th home run (Paul Bako hit two homers in that game and was jokingly incredulous as to why he wasn’t getting the most media attention that night).
While Griffey was a Red, I saw him at his best and at his worst – which made it even more surreal to me; knowing your childhood hero is as human as you are (to a degree, somewhat). That’s what I most admire about Junior – his mortality and that although he had out-of-this-world ability, he still had (and has) to deal with the some of the same trivial things you and I do.
There’s an old adage that says “I’d rather be lucky than good.” In Junior’s case he was really good but a lot of his luck wasn’t. Either way, he’s a much-deserved hall of famer and I’m the lucky one who got to watch the show.
If I had to choose my favorite memory of Ken Griffey Jr as a Cincinnati Red, it would probably be this one…