Griffey's become a very reserved, very quiet man ever since arriving in Cincinnati. I don't know what that city's done to him, but something drastic has changed. He may call it growing up - but I dunno.
A few years ago this guy was undoubtedly everyone's #1 pick in a baseball draft. Now, he'll go top 100. Quite the drop for the man.
I hope he recovers and we get that grin back. I really miss watching the Griffey of the mid 90's.
I look at Big Mac when he got hurt these last two years. His easy grin was gone... he was unhappy with how he was playing. I think once Griffey's game turns around we'll begin to see him having fun out there again.
I am the JOBBER TO THE STARS. You better remember that.
Griffey really changed when he was playing in Seattle. It's hard to pinpoint what did it. He is a very imature person though, but then again he did have to grow up fast. He was VERY sensitive in Seattle, and never took critisim very well. Which is weird because he was a *GOD* in Seattle. The man owned the city, but all it would take is one local writer or sports radio personality to question him, and he'd get all pouty and stubborn. I think he tends to over react to a lot of things thrown his way, causing them to get bigger than they really are. Hell, he made NIKE quit the 'Griffey for President' ads, because writers were asking him about issues. He has a hard time ignoring things and rolling with the punches. Griffey is definetly an opposite to A-Rod in that regard.
I would like to see Griffey get his smile back, but I have a feeling he will always be one of those bitter people.
Eh, the poor bastard probably just wants to be left alone. Which, of course, is incredibly futile when you're Ken Griffey, Jr. Hard to enjoy the game when the game is just one ring of a very large circus.
"The thing about gambling is... you gotta be ready to lose. You got 21? I got 22. You got Blackjack? I got two of those." Jake "The Snake" Roberts
Griffey is spoiled. But if I grew up with a big money major league ball player as my Dad in a city where my Dad and my family are treated like Gods I would be spoiled too. Remember folks the Griffey's are Cincinnati born and raised.
Junior was treated like a God all through little league and his High School games, when he played at the storied Archbishop Moeller High School in Cincinnati, were known to be shown on television. Can you imagine being a Freshman in High School and being in Baseball Weekly, having your games shown on TV, and being able to walk into anywhere in Cincinnati and having your ass kissed? I can't. But thats how Griffey was treated.
Now I can see how it would be hard to come "home" with all the expectations of the city and franchise on your shoulders. Here is one of the biggest superstars in the game coming back to the town that he grew up in and made him a star first. I'm sure thats pressure. But thats why he is paid nearly half of the teams payroll.
Having lived a mere 2 hours away and went to school in the 'Nati I can tell you it is one strange place though. A fickle city in deed. A city that once had a true passion for its baseball team, but that passion was killed by the strike. When the strike was over the Reds were AWFUL. Like they did to the Bengals, the fans stopped coming. This city demands a winner and when Junior came home the city lit up again and low and behold Riverfront Stadium (its not Cynergy Field dammit)was full again.
But Junior did awful trying to adjust to National League parks and pitching. Then he got hurt and the Reds still sucked. So the people became even more hardened and cynical than before. Let me tell you it will take more than a new ballpark to return the cities faith in its once beloved Reds and it will take more than Junior. It seems to me that publiclly Junior doesn't want attention, but privately he demands it. Personally I wish he would go. Thats money we could have used on pitching which we desperately need.
The only people I feel sorry for concerning any threats are his wife and children. I wouldn't wish that kind of fear on anyone. But is that an excuse for Griffey to be an ass? No. There is a reason Seattle has done so well without him you know.
When you're riding in a time machine way far into the future, don't stick your elbow out the window, or it'll turn into a fossil.
I would argue that the player should be allowed to work out with the team and have access to the trainer or coaches and be in the dressing room, but he should not be allowed to play in the minor leagues or be on the bench during a game.