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The Kid Retires

Ken Griffey Jr. retired today, effective immediately.

Here are his words on why he retired.

I don't have anything insightful to add, and I won't pretend to have anything, either. I could talk about the roster. I could talk about what Griffey's role could be with organization moving forward. I could speculate on what was the tipping point.

But who cares about any of that right now? Maybe you do, and that's totally fine if you do. All I know is that I don't, and I tend to obsess over the M's roster. I just have a collection of thoughts stemming from Griffey's decision, and there isn't room for much else as of this moment.

A 40-something, powerless, bad-hitting, slow-footed designated hitter just retired. A roster spot that was being used on a player well below replacement level has been liberated.

The active home run leader just retired. That doesn't happen every day.

One of the brightest Seattle sports stars of all-time just retired. That doesn't happen every day either.

The man as responsible as anyone for keeping the Mariners in Seattle just retired. That won't happen ever again.

This is a big deal. As a fan, it feels good. As a fan, it hurts too. I was sure that this decision should have been made a few weeks ago, but I am shocked it actually happened. There are definitely several feelings clashing for me.

I'm sure this is a good day though. It's easy to love Ken Griffey Jr. again. I couldn't say that as he rode the pine, and especially when he rolled slow grounders towards second near the bitter end.

Not that my feelings matter at all in this situation. I don't think they should, but they are still real, and I doubt mine are all that different from anyone who grew up watching those mid '90s M's. A part of me felt dirty not wanting to see Ken Griffey Jr. step to the plate this season, knowing what he used to be, which on some level was still what he is. Griffey deserves to be loved and appreciated as the living legend that he is, and it is way easier for me to do that now than it was five hours ago.