Famous Baseball Players
Base Ball Players
Ken Griffey Jr.
Ken Griffey, Jr. (born George Kenneth Griffey, Jr. on November 21, 1969 in Donora, Pennsylvania) is a Major League Baseball player.
Ken Griffey was born near Pittsburgh in the Steel Valley town of Donora. Griffey shares not only the same birthday, but also the same birthplace as Hall of Famer Stan Musial. His family moved to Cincinnati, Ohio, where his father, Ken Griffey, Sr. played for the Cincinnati Reds when he was five. The younger Griffey played baseball at Moeller High School, a Catholic school in Cincinnati better known for its football program. While he was in high school, he drew raves from Major League scouts for his batting swing, widely regarded as the best of his generation, and effortless fielding prowess. In fact, Griffey's teammates would supposedly play closer to the lines in order for Griffey to take advantage of (and display) his great range in center field.
In 1987 Griffey was selected with the first overall pick of that year's amateur draft by the Seattle Mariners. As a big leaguer, he was well on the way to the Rookie of the Year award but was thwarted when he slipped in the shower and broke a bone in his right hand in late July, 1989. While with the Mariners, Junior, as he is often called, established himself as one of baseball's premier players, and during the '90s, Griffey was considered one of the best players of the time. In fact, many consider him to be the "player of the 90s". Other competitors for the title might have been Frank Thomas and, more questionably, Albert Belle. Before injuries cut into his production, he was a top run producer and the best center fielder in the big leagues. Griffey hit for a high average, batting over .300 for seven of the years of the '90s, and hit with power as well, slugging 422 home runs during the decade.
Additionally, his defense in center field breeched no rivals during that decade. Thanks to his impressive range, Griffey frequently made spectacular diving plays, and he often dazzled fans by making over-the-shoulder basket catches (a la Willie Mays' "the Catch" in the 1954 World Series) and by robbing opposing hitters of home runs at the wall — leaping up and pulling them back into the field of play. He was featured on the Wheaties cereal box and, because of his general likability and lack of legal problems, was an effective pitchman. Griffey also had his own signature sneaker line from Nike, Inc.