Congratulations, Junior!
Tuesday, June 10, 2008 | Author: Mad Typist
Yesterday, Ken Griffrey Jr. joined an elite club of men, hitting his 600th Home Run of his career. This is a momentous occasion and it couldn't have happened to a nicer guy. Sports Illustrated has a great article up about why it's an important milestone and how Junior did it the right way. Key quote:
Griffey, who belted 40 homers in his 2000 return, has had just two 30-homer seasons since. He's been chronically injured, hamstrung by hamstring woes in particular. Blessed by good genes and bad legs. "General soreness" is how the Reds' recent pre-game notes describe his physical condition.

Yet he's rarely alibied, and never honked his own horn. Never had to. When Griffey hit his 600th, his was a dignified, major-league loll around the basepaths. Not too slow, not too fast, not showy in the least, before hugging his oldest son, Trey, in the dugout. It was the antithesis of Bonds' preening, look-at-me sashay after his 756th dinger.

[snip]

Come late July, the question may be this: Will Griffey, the sixth man to belt 600 homers, become the first to be traded in the same season? The eight-year extension he signed in 2000 has a club option for 2009. Whatever the Reds decide, Griffey, at 38, still has aspirations to join the 700 club. Who knows how high they'd have been had he not been injured so often this decade? Say, 800? The one 800 club member? Who'll know?

Know this: Junior's achievement was not only extraordinary, but untainted. Welcome him home properly, Cincinnati.

I'm reminded of an Onion spoof article from a year or so back, when Barry Bonds broken the career home run record. It's called Nation to Ken Griffey Jr.: "We Wish It Were You Hitting 756 Home Runs". Now, this is supposed to be a funny article (and it certainly is, you should read it), but on the other hand, there's certainly a grain of truth to it. Because for all Barry Bonds's bluster about how people didn't want him to break the record because he was black, I think the truth is for around 90% of us that we just thought he was a giant dick, and we don't like to see giant dicks win stuff. I think had it been Griffey Jr. (and believe me, without some of the injuries or bad luck of the strike happening when it did, it could have been), the nation would have celebrated and there would have been no controversy.
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