Griffey lets it roll in Hall of Fame speech

GriffeyEntranceGreat night at Safeco Field tonight with Ken Griffey Jr.’s induction into the Mariners Hall of Fame.

I love this picture I caught of Griffey as he strolled in from center field, past the No. 24 painted into the grass, as the crowd roared. Junior then spoke from the heart for more than 23 minutes — and, yeah, let’s just round it up to 24 to fit the night. He was allotted for a 10-minute window in the pregame ceremony, so it’s fair to say Junior let it run a little.

Most of his speech was focused on thanking people and regaling his friends and former teammates, particularly Jay Buhner, Edgar Martinez, Dan Wilson, Randy Johnson and Alvin Davis, the five players who preceded him into the Mariners Hall.

He also had kind words for Dave Niehaus, who was represented by his wife, Marilyn Niehaus.

You can read my full story on the night’s events here.

I also wrote about Griffey’s luncheon and talk with the media on Friday, which included an explanation of why he wore his cap backward that I’d never heard before. That’s all here.

And we’ll have video from the ceremony up on Mariners.com shortly as well.

Good stuff all around. I was fortunate to have had the chance to watch and cover Griffey when he was coming up in Seattle, but it still amazes me to watch his highlight video and be reminded again just how much he packed into his career here.

The man was a special player. The best I’ve ever seen. And to watch him on a daily basis was a treat that Mariners fans should never forget.

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