Brock and Salk
Former teammates weigh in on Ken Griffey Jr.’s HOF induction
On the day of Ken Griffey Jr.’s record-setting vote into the Baseball Hall of Fame, some of his old teammates and acquaintances with the Seattle Mariners joined 710 ESPN Seattle to talk about the career of “The Kid.” Highlights and links to each interview are included below.
• Former Mariners outfielder Jay Buhner on “Brock and Salk”: “At the end of the day, I think it’s just the fact that he’s going in and is arguably the best player to ever play during his era and definitely the best Mariner to wear a uniform, for sure.”
• Former Mariners catcher Dan Wilson on “Justin and Gee”: “Just the stuff he did on a daily basis, it was awe-inspiring, and for me being a young player trying to prove myself every day, he was the type of guy who because you saw greatness every day, you got better as well. That’s what I think is really the mark of a great, great player and a Hall of Fame player, is the guy on the team that makes everybody around him better, and Junior certainly did that for the Mariners.”
• Mariners play-by-play announcer Rick Rizzs on “Danny, Dave and Moore”: “I’ve got goosebumps just sitting here. We were all waiting to find out the announcement. There was no question obviously he was going in. The only question was whether or not he was going to be a unanimous pick and it became the closest ever in the history of the voting. And if I’m three guys that didn’t vote for him, which there were, I’m a little worried right now because those guys are getting phone calls… But this is a great day for not only Junior, his entire family, but for the Mariners family, the Pacific Northwest where he played and became a Hall of Famer right here starting back in 1989. I don’t know if there’s anybody who deserves it more than that guy. He reminded us of Willie Mays with the great catches and the home runs but he also reminded us why we play the game of baseball: to have fun. The guy had a great time every time he went out there and really entertained us. There was no question he was a Hall of Famer from the day he put on that uniform.”
Another Mariners great who was up for Hall of Fame voting also weighed in on Junior and missing the cut himself in a statement.
• Edgar Martinez, who received 43.4 percent of the vote, short of the required 75 percent for Hall of Fame induction: “First, I want to congratulate Ken on his election today. Both as a teammate and as a player, it was obvious that he was a Hall of Famer. The news today isn’t a surprise, but it is well deserved. For me, I am really encouraged, and thankful, in the increase of votes. I certainly didn’t expect to be elected today, but it is always a little disappointing when it becomes official. Although, I’m so happy for Ken that makes it a little easier.”