For selfish reasons I hate to see Griffey’s $16 million option declined by the White Sox.
And unless Griffey accepts a deal with Chicago that would pay him slightly above the league minimum, I’ve seen the last of my favorite ball player as a regular on Comcast Sports broadcasts.
Of course, I’m not surprised by the move, Sox’s GM Kenny Williams is far to savvy to keep a player who’s closer to the finish line than we might think.
So, my hope now is for Junior to return to Seattle, where he belongs, and where he’ll be appreciated by the hometown fans.
That being said, it’s no secret that Griffey is a father first and a ballplayer second.
And while playing for Seattle appears to be the happy ending fans want for Junior’s career, it also means he’ll once again be thousands of miles away from his family home in Orlando.
Thus, Seattle just doesn’t seem like a move Griffey is willing to make.
The way I see it, Junior ends up with Tampa Bay in 2009.
The Rays can utilize Griffey two fold: first, by Tampa declining its option on the left-handed hitting Cliff Floyd, Junior not only replaces Floyd’s veteran leadership role, he also moves into the vacated DH spot in the lineup.
Most importantly, however, Griffey appears to have a much greater chance at a World Series ring with Tampa than he would playing for the Mariners.
A two for one deal will be hard for the Rays and Griff to pass up.