Griffey Could Be Released Soon

TUESDAY, 8:51am: SI's Jon Heyman tweets that the Mariners "aren't about to release" Griffey.  To be clear, here's what LaRue wrote yesterday:

All of them [Don Wakamatsu, Jack Zduriencik, and Chuck Armstrong] are going to ask Junior to retire gracefully. If he doesn’t, the end of Griffey’s career will come, anyway – by way of a release from the Seattle Mariners.  All that is going to happen, probably this month.

MONDAY, 5:14pm: Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik told Larry Stone of the Seattle Times that he "wouldn't read into or speculate on anything" as far as an upcoming release. Zduriencik didn't comment on any of the goings on in the team's clubhouse, though he did note that several Mariners are now struggling at the plate.

1:06pm: Ken Griffey Jr. could be released this month, reports Larry LaRue of The Tacoma News Tribune.  The Mariners would prefer retirement, but at any rate, LaRue believes "the end is near" for Junior.

LaRue's story details Griffey's problems beyond his lack of offensive production.  Apparently he is not proving valuable as a teammate either.  For instance, LaRue says Griffey was unavailable to pinch-hit recently because he was asleep in the clubhouse during a game. 

Meanwhile, Shannon Drayer of 710 ESPN in Seattle writes that Griffey has always napped because he has a "sleep issue." It doesn't change the fact that Griffey isn't hitting, but as Drayer notes, Griffey naps constantly.

58 Responses to Griffey Could Be Released Soon Leave a Reply

  1. flumesalot 5 years ago

    just…. WOW.

    Mariners releasing The Kid would be like kicking your Mom out on Mother’s day.

  2. How about retiring with an immediate coaching position, sort of like what the Dodgers wanted to do with Mientkiewicz.

  3. Triteon 5 years ago

    Oh, Kid! What’s happened to you? Terrible way to end a HOF career…

  4. coolstorybro222 5 years ago

    ….yeah The Griffey I knew as a kid is now no longer here.

  5. brittainyjean 5 years ago

    Noooooo! I still love him either way!

  6. Given his age, he probably just needed a nap. No biggie.

  7. The Mariners did just fire their hitting coach, so perhaps there was a method to this madness? I agree that Griffey is done, but he IS the Mariner franchise; Ichiro as well. I love Griffey, he was my baseball hero growing up, and I will always continue to appreciate everything he’s accomplished and done. With that said, it’s not fair to Bradley to have to be the cleanup hitter in a line up in which he has absolutly zero protection. No wonder he asked the team for help! This could turn into a snowball effect of sorts, potentially leading to a DH aquisition, or it could be simply what it is.

  8. coachofall 5 years ago

    He must have had the Mariner game on in the clubhouse. If you ever tried to watch that team play you would fall asleep as well.

  9. bjsguess 5 years ago

    That is quite possibly the funniest thing I have ever read.

    Questions I have …

    — They couldn’t wake Jr from his slumber? Did they try the old “hot foot”? That should wake up anybody.
    — Do they provide a cot in the dugout or was he chillin’ in the clubhouse?
    — Was it a day game (thus interfering with his nap schedule) or a night game (maybe it went past his bedtime).
    — Must have been a home game. The M’s are getting like 15,000 people a game. The fans probably make some pretty decent background noise. Almost like falling asleep to the ocean sounds. That wouldn’t work in most stadiums because the occasional roar of the crowd might wake you. But in Seattle … they haven’t had anything to cheer about over the past 8 games (until last night).

  10. They can let go of Griffey they should look into working around his nap schedule. If a game is conflicting with his nap schedule they should postpone the game until Griffey wakes up. On second thought just retire Griff as a HOF and become the M’s hitting coach. Just don’t fall asleep during batting practice…

  11. Alldaybaseball 5 years ago

    He fell asleep?! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA that made my day.

  12. jdb3 5 years ago

    I have been praying he retires because I think everyone knows the M’s want his spot. It would be awful to see him released after his once amazing career. Now days though he looks like he is sleeping at the plate.

  13. livingpaint 5 years ago

    fire the moose, give his job to griff… keeps him on the field, in the clubhouse, fans get to cheer for him and i believe if the M’s do something HUGE and win the WS, he might be able to get a ring too.

  14. gocrazy 5 years ago

    Yikes, hope they don’t release him but then I’m not a Mariner fan.

    • skoorbo 5 years ago

      I am and I do.

    • Triteon 5 years ago

      Do you remember the old joke (yet it’s not a joke) “Somebody go wake up Lee”? Lee Smith was so uninterested in the games themselves — also a problem among
      Cards fans at the time — that he would sit on a chair in the tunnel waiting for someone to come get him to finish the game…generally he was napping.

      • studio179 5 years ago

        Yeah, Smitty had a rutine. He would sleep in the clubhouse until the 5th inning, get up and have a pizza, then slowly work his way out to the bull pen area by the 7th inning. It was common and most everyone knew it.

  15. m4r1n3r 5 years ago

    Not gonna happen. LaRue is speculating. Sweeney will go before Griffey does.

  16. monroe_says
    monroe_says 5 years ago

    I’m sure the Mariner Moose takes a nap every once in a while, too.

  17. livingpaint 5 years ago

    the next griffey bobble head night is going to be interesting if he leaves soon… maybe they can salvage the ones made by painting them to look like franklin gutierrez or change the number so he looks more like figgins. i love griffey but we definitely need him in the clubhouse as a mentor not as a player; he’s taking up a spot we should have filled with Vlad while he was still shopping around for a new home last winter.

    • deere5800 5 years ago

      Just leave it as Griffey but instead of it bobbing just make it droop down slowly and then snap back up as we tries to stay awake

  18. GOwhitesoxNgiants 5 years ago

    I wonder if Ichiro is as enthusiastic as before in having him in the clubhouse.

  19. crunchy1 5 years ago

    First Eric Byrnes takes off on a bicycle, then Milton Bradley for, well…a lot of things, and now Griffey falls asleep on the bench. What’s next? This is a pretty dysfunctional unit. I think Jack Z has a great baseball mind, but he’s going to have to tweak his methodology a bit.

  20. Guest 5 years ago

    What advanced stats did the Great Z look at?

  21. mattinglyfan 5 years ago

    That would be a pretty embarrassing way for his career to end but……..LOL.

  22. bwp2001 5 years ago

    This has nothing to do with how bad he is now (he is terrible, no doubt). This has everything to do with his imprint on the M’s. You kick Mike Sweeney first, not Griffey. Sweeney hasn’t done squat for the M’s. Griffey built Safeco and kept the M’s in Seattle. Don’t argue with me, it’s true. You release someone that influential and you can kiss half the M’s season attendance goodbye. People love The Kid, no matter how bad he is, and kicking him would be tantamount to a near-total collapse on all levels for the M’s. Bad bad bad bad bad idea. Did I stress how bad this idea is? It’s bad. I pray it’s just a rumor.

  23. FullerTron 5 years ago

    The M’s still have 4 Jr. themed fan giveaways this year, just interesting. Jermaine Dye should be staring at his phone in anticipation.

  24. Usually I can be a smart ass on this site, but not about Jr. This guy did more for most of us concerning baseball than we recognize. The sweetest swing ever in baseball. Pure. I’ve said it already, but let’s not get carried away with our smart ass comments on this one. Show some respect to Jr. regardless of reporting.

    • bjsguess 5 years ago


      Look, Jr has had an amazing career. Could have been one of the greatest ever had his body not betrayed him. Nobody can take that away from him. But, if you can’t stay awake during a MLB game then it’s time to hang it up. When you are unavailable to step into the on deck circle because it would interfere with your REM cycle it’s time to call it a career.

      I also am not sure what Griffey did for “most of us”. I’ve watched him since he came up as a rookie. I respect his game immensely. However, I’m not sure what he has done for me? He hasn’t been a significant player for a decade now. The Reds never won with him, same goes with the M’s. His teams have played in a total of 2 post-seasons, never advancing to the WS. Again, not his fault but I’m struggling with what he did “for us”.

      • Maybe you are right, maybe Griffey did nothing for you personally.


        His 1997 season, among every other thing he has done in his career, is a major contribution to “most of us” in regards to baseball. When considering every thing that has since come out about baseball/players/owners/etc, this season is a lone island in an era defined by negativity.

        This response is short and not filled with statistics, but a valid argument to Jr’s contribution to “most of us” in my opinion.

      • Maybe you are right, maybe Griffey did nothing for you personally.


        His 1997 season, among every other thing he has done in his career, is a major contribution to “most of us” in regards to baseball. When considering every thing that has since come out about baseball/players/owners/etc, this season is a lone island in an era defined by negativity.

        This response is short and not filled with statistics, but a valid argument to Jr’s contribution to “most of us” in my opinion.

    • ctownboy 5 years ago

      Respect? Do you REMEMBER how King Griffey Jr left the team in 1999?

      Once he realized that Alex Rodriguez was the new fan favorite (which hurt his EGO), KGJ turned down an eight year, $140 million dollar contract extension that the Mariners offered. He then told the team that he would like to be traded.

      The Front Office worked to accomodate him and had a trade all set with the Mets. KGJ, because he was a 10 and 5 man, vetoed that trade and THEN demamded to ONLY be traded to Cincinnati, the city he grew up in and the one where his Dad had played (also the place where the fans and media would be LEAST tough on him and where his EGO would get stroked the MOST).

      So, KGJ put the Mariners Front Office over a barrel and bolted from the city where the fans once loved him.

      What was KGJ’s excuse for all of this? He wanted to live closer to his family and wanted to have a better chance at going to the Post Season and winning a Championship ring.

      What the facts show however, is that from 1995 to 1999, both the Mariners AND the Mets had a better Winning Percentage than the Reds and both made MORE Play Off appearances than the Reds. So KGJ saying he wanted to go to a team that had a chance at winning a ring is hollow.

      As far as living closer to his family in Orlando, KGJ must not be good at geography. Atlanta is MUCH closer to Florida than Ohio AND the Braves were going to the Play Offs EVERY FREAKING YEAR. Also, the Marlins (who won the WOrld Series in 1997) and the Tampa Bay Rays were closer to his home and family. So, THAT doesn’t ring true either.

      Finally, as far as respect goes, Toothpick Baker showed KGJ “respect” by allowing him to bat third in the order for most of 2008. The problem with THAT was a young Joey Votto was on the team (a future cornerstone) and was relegated to batting seventh. Here is the funny (sad) part; even batting seventh, Votto outperformed KGJ on offense EVERY month of the season that year.

      So, the Reds were struggling on Offense (sound familiar?) that year and KGJ was being “respected” and being given At Bats in the middle of the order and was NOT performing as well as a YOUNGER player. Yet the YOUNGER player (who was counted on as being a part of the FUTURE of the Reds) had to suffer so KGJ’s EGO could be stroked—and the losing continued.

      It was REALLY funny to see that the Reds had a BETTER record AFTER both King Griffey Jr and Adam “one tool” Dunn were traded away.

    • ctownboy 5 years ago

      One other thing. If KGJ TRULY wanted to go to a team that had a chance to win a Championship ring, he would have played out his contract (which was set to expire after the 2000 season) and become a Free Agent where the YANKEES would have given him the largest contract in MLB history.

      So, all KGJ had to do was suffer through ONE MORE YEAR in Seattle (where A Rod was the fan favorite) and then he could have been the highest paid player in teh gaem AND been on a team that had a chance to win a World Series EVERY YEAR.

      But did he do that? NO!!! Why? Because he KNEW if he played in New York the fans, media and ownership would NOT allow him to get away with the crap he did in Seattle (and the struff he got away with in Cincinnati). They would have EXPECTED him to be prepared and play hard every day.

      That means he would have had to stretch more than he did in Seattle. It would have meant he would have had ro run hard out of the box every At Bat and NOT stand at home plate admiring long drives off the outfield wall which resulted in Singels (instead of Doubles). It would have meant being a hard working leader instead of being a guy who just sat around the Club House in his customized recliner telling jokes, playing video games and sleeping.

      No, KGJ left Seattle because of his EGO. He went to Cincinnati because of his EGO and then he returned to Seattle because of his EGO.

      It is time the Mariners Front Office and ownership manned up and busted that EGO and let KGJ go out to pasture where he can get fatter and sleep in his recliner all he wants.

      • jrisnttheonlyproblem 5 years ago

        Clearly you don’t have a great grasp on baseball history – Griffey made it known years ago that he would never play for the Yankees because of the way that they treated his dad.

        • Most Reds fans don’t.

          as far as they are concerned, Griffey and Dunn are the only two reasons why the Reds haven’t been good in a long time. no one else on the field, in the clubhouse, or in the front office had anything to do with anything, it was all because of Griffey and Dunn. They ruined the Reds all by themselves.

          Hence the scathing titangraphs about Griffey here from our Reds fan friend.

          either way, Griffey is still first-ballot HoF regardless of how many essays our Reds fan friend writes here. and he’ll go in wearing a M’s hat.

          that said, Griff should really retire at this point.

  25. TimotheusATL 5 years ago

    “I asked Don Wakamatsu if it was a matter of method over message. He said that when you have eight guys hitting under .220 you have to look at everything.”

    Et tu, Frank Wren?

  26. ctownboy 5 years ago

    Releasing King Griffey Jr would be the EXACT thing to do. It would send a message to both the players AND the fans that not performing well is one thing but to top it off by being lazy and unprofessional is another.

    As it stands now, the message being sent by NOT releasing KGJ is that there are double standards in the locker room. Just think if a promising young rookie were found napping in the clubhouse when he was needed to Pinch Hit. Do you think HE would still be on the team after that? NO!! He would be immediately sent down so as to teach him a lesson and send a message to eveyone else.

    So what’s the difference with KGJ? It’s not like he is just in a slump and is somehow going to magically bounce back and hit .300 with 30 Home Runs and 100 RBI the rest of the season.

    Maybe the OTHER players are pressing BECAUSE of KGJ. Maybe they see that he is done yet is being “respected” by being allowed to continue to get At Bats that he shouldn’t be getting. Maybe they KNOW he can’t hit anymore and can’t be counted on and they feel THEY have to try and do MORE to compensate for it.

    Maybe they also see how KGJ goes about his business, as far as preparing for games (or staying alert and ready to contribute) and see that he is just mailing it in and resent him, the Manager, the Front Office and Ownership for it.

    KGJ had entitlement issues while with the Reds. He and Adam “one tool” Dunn once got into trouble for brining mathing reclining chairs into the clubhouse. Sound familiar? After the were told to remove them, KGJ was pouty.

    After KGJ’s defense was only average (some would say less than average) in Center Field and people were suggesting he should move to a corner outfield position (to help improve the defense but to also keep KGJ’s legs fresher), KGJ responded with “I will change positions once a better Center Fielder is on the team”. Well, they already HAD one in Ryan Freel but KGJ didn’t see it. Because of this, Freel had to be used as a super utility player and because he played balls out all the time, suffered injuries because of it.

    After the Reds made the decision to move KGJ to Right Field, he pouted ALL during Spring Training and did NOT get prepare himself properly to play D in RF. Because of this, it took him at least a month to get comfortable playing D in RF and during that time, he HURT the pitching staff because of balls falling in for Hits that shouldn’t have.

    No, King Griffey Jr is NOT about winning but he IS about EGO. The longer the Mariners keep this has-been on the team and continue to feed his EGO, the worse it is going to be for the team.

  27. jrisnttheonlyproblem 5 years ago

    I think everyone is reading too much into LaRue’s statements that he will be released and/or asked to retire…it sounds to me like they are opinion much more than fact.

    Do you really think that coincidentally a front office guy would let that fact be leaked the same day that 2 younger players essentially rat him out (those 2 players didn’t think it was a big deal, by the way)?

  28. natsfan99 5 years ago

    Sign Elijah Dukes

    • melonis_rex 5 years ago

      Mike Sweeney threatening to fight people. Elijah Dukes in the clubhouse? That would be some awesome media.

      • studio179 5 years ago

        Don’t forget Milton Bradley would be returning down the road to add to the mix. Hmm…maybe the new and improved version would mediate.

      • natsfan99 5 years ago

        If your source is the media………you shouldn’t believe all you hear. He will be 26 this year……….a lot of good baseball left for him to play.

  29. Triteon 5 years ago

    Someday you’ll be old too, and you’re already a terrible hitter otherwise you’d be playing ball instead of commenting on this site.

  30. What else is there to do other than sleep when your team clearly doesn’t want you? LOL

  31. boseefuss 5 years ago

    Morning wood durning a game is just too funny

  32. 55saveslives 5 years ago


    Is that you?

  33. Triteon 5 years ago

    Hmm. Well, I have yet to win a World Series, so…

  34. I’m joking. Relax. :)

  35. Thanks. I started to think it was *me* who was going senile!

  36. ELPinchy 5 years ago

    ‘Legacy” ,Aka ego and improving his HoF campaign.

  37. Legacy? You’re talking about The Kid. His legacy is etched in each and every one of us. Improve his HOF campaign? He is a shoe in, no improvement necessary. Show some respect when you talk about The Kid. I hate to read stories like this, but at the same time, let’s know our place to talk when it comes to Griff and we need to show mad respect and love to this guy. He has done more for baseball in each and every one of us then we will ever truly know.

  38. So? Where are you going with that? A comment like that holds no water when it comes to Jr. and you know it. Many of douchebags have rings on their fingers but that means nothing in the big scheme of things. Jr. changed the way you and I watch and love baseball, so your comment is quite immature to say the least.

  39. I might have gotten a bit carried away after reading your comment…

  40. Triteon 5 years ago

    Yeah, it was just a bit of snark from me. I love Junior as a ballplayer, always have.

    I was really excited — this was in the days before the scourge of interleague play — when the M’s played a two-game, pre-season set at Busch Stadium and I got to see Griffey and Edgar Martinez play. (Edgar doubled twice while the Kid singled, but he made a nice running catch in CF.) Griff is an island of clean in a dirty era, and this is an ignominious end to a HOF career.

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