Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Ken Griffey Jr. is in the Hall of Fame

One of my favorite posters
Two weeks ago, Ken Griffey Jr. became the first Seattle Mariner to be inducted into the Hall of Fame (HOF). Rightly so, many card bloggers posted their card tribute to Griffey during HOF weekend.  I had considered that but I wanted to add a local flavor to my post.

This weekend, the Mariners hosted their own induction ceremony for Griffey on Saturday.  I was lucky enough to attend the game and decided to share some thoughts from the game.

It's a bobblehead, alright.
The bobblehead was actually from Friday's game, which I did not attend.  Thankfully my brother-in-law went to game and scored the bobblehead for me.  As you can see, Griffey is holding his HOF plaque. Griffey will sit alongside my Dave Niehaus bobblehead, who was also inducted into the HOF but as an announcer.

The giveaway for Saturday's ceremony was a mini replica HOF plaque.  They had the real thing there that was available for a photo opportunity but the line to see it was very long.  I would have missed the whole game waiting to see it, which I'm glad I didn't as the game was an exciting comeback victory.  It's not as if this would be the only time to see the plaque as I could always go to Cooperstown.

The Mariners pulled out all the stops for Saturday's ceremony.  The giant banner, his number painted in center field, the number going up next to Jackie Robinson's.

I love seeing a sold out Safeco Field
It was a great ceremony.  Seattle legends came out to support Griffey, including Dan Wilson, Jay Buhner, Alvin Davis, Jamie Moyer.  Not only that but other Hall of Famers such as Steve Largent, Cortez Kennedy, Spencer Haywood, Tony Perez, Gary Payton, and Ricky Henderson showed up. WOW.  I mean, my god, the talent on that field.

There were also video messages from greats like Willie Mays, Kobe Bryant, Jeff Gordon, and Hank Aaron.  Mays had a funny story saying that he called Griffey when the official vote talley was announced.  However, Griffey didn't answer his call and never called him back.  In the video, Mays told Griffey to call him sometime, which Griffey did right on the field.  Great stuff.

Unbelievable that all these players come out

Now onto the cards.  I don't have many Griffey cards but according to my collection on TCDB I have 18 different cards.  Eighteen is good enough to be ranked #2 in my collection, only behind Ichiro. I'm glad he's ranked so high but for a player with so many cards, it could be higher!
1991 Score - 1990 Donruss - 1994 Fleer Sunoco
1994 Post Cereal - 1992 Donruss - 1991 Donruss

The bulk of my Griffey cards are from early on in his career.  I think growing up one of my favorite cards was the 91 Score card.  It's a great image that captures his sweet swing.

1997 Upper Deck Seattle Mariners Stadium Giveaway
This is from a full set of 20 cards that was given away at a Mariners game.  I wish teams did more card giveaways at games.

2003 Upper Deck Honor Roll
The only Reds Griffey card in my collection.  The Tribute to the Kid insert below doesn't count as those aren't base cards.

2015 Topps - Inspired Play

2016 Topps - Hallowed Highlights
A nice tribute card to Griffey's 1997 AL MVP season.

2016 Topps - Tribute to the Kid

2016 Topps - Tribute to the Kid
The Tribute to the Kid insert from this year's Topps celebrates Griffey's career.  It's a nice retrospective and it's a good sized set that isn't difficult to complete.

2016 Topps Now
The latest addition to my Griffey collection is the Topps Now card from his HoF induction.  I like the idea of Topps Now and the execution based on my one-time experience is satisfactory.  The card selection, however, is very hit and miss.  The player selections skew heavily towards teams you would expect like Yankees, Red Sox, Cubs.  The Mariners have had a decent number of cards but as of late they have been all but ignored.  Flame throwing rookie Edwin Diaz, called up from AA and striking out players at a high clip? Nah.  Mariners retire Griffey's number and Hall of Famers across multiple sports show up? Nope.  Mariners sweep the Angels? Forget about.  But don't worry, Trout got two cards this weekend.

Anyway, rant over.  The card is nice but at $10 a pop it won't be something I buy again.  I can't justify the cost for one card for an event that will be largely forgettable by the end of the year.  Unless the Mariners win the World Series, I'm done.

That wraps up this Griffey post.  I'm sure we will see new Griffey cards for years to come.


  1. I feel the same way as a Jay fan.. I think there's been 5 cards of Jays..

  2. Welcome to the blogging world! I agree with you about Topps Now. I love the concept, but it needs to be tweaked.