Ken Griffey Jr. finished his return to Seattle with a flourish, smacking a pair of home runs off Miguel Batista in the final game of the Mariners-Reds series. The performance moved him past Mark McGwire to seventh on the all-time list. Here’s how it looks now:
1. Aaron – 755
2. Bonds – 749
3. Ruth – 714
4. Mays – 660
5. Sosa – 601
6. Robinson – 586
7. Griffey – 584
Junior should move into sixth very soon. Griffey has more staying power than Sammy Sosa, and should pass him in due time. I can see Griffey retiring fourth on the all-time list, passing Mays as well. He is the man America wishes was chasing Aaron right now.
Let’s be realistic about Sosa, by the way. He has a .305 OBP. He’s having a terrible year, well below average for his position. Sosa is about the 200th best hitter in baseball right now, based on VORP. His performance has been roughly on par with that of Alex Cora. He has been out-hit by many pitchers. He is a sideshow and should not be starting for any team.
Anyway, back to Griffey. He recently created a stir in Seattle, saying he’d like to retire as a Mariner. However, it was unclear whether he wanted to play another season or two in Seattle or if he just wanted a one-day contract on his last day.
U.S.S. Mariner likes the idea, but hopes it happens in 2009 instead of anytime soon. Adam Jones and Wladimir Balentien comprise two-thirds of the Tacoma Ranier outfield right now, and the tandem will remain together in Seattle for many years. There are better ways for the Mariners to spend money and talent right now than bringing Griffey back, even as a DH.