"The people of Seattle have no idea how hard this process is," Griffey told the Seattle-P-I before finalizing things in his own mind. "If it is Seattle, then I won't see my family more than two or three times in seven months. They have their schedules, and they're not going to change them." (Hickey)
I guess that sends a message to little Trey, Taryn, and Tevin. "You may be my own flesh and blood, but you don't mean as much to me as the crazies in the Northwest who won't let me go."
What an asshole.
Anyway, at last, it's over, with the only real casualty from the saga being the full Griffey-to-Atlanta post I wrote up last night, hid, and deleted an hour ago. That sucked. But while erasing finished content is super annoying, this is good news, or at least it's good news when viewed in the context of a reality in which we end up with either Griffey or Garret Anderson. It's good news for fans and it's good news for fanboys, because the Mariners get both the more useful player and the bigger draw. I mean, how many players get attendance incentives built into their contracts?
He has accepted the Mariners' one-year contract offer that includes a $2 million base salary and up to $4 million in incentives based on at-bats and attendance. His return to Safeco Field is expected to lure an additional 200,000 fans this season. (Pravda)
It's perfect, really. Instead of guaranteeing Griffey a chunk of money under the assumption that he'll bring out the crowds, this way he only gets that chunk of money if the crowds actually come, under which circumstances I imagine the team would be earning enough revenue to throw their budget concerns to the wind. All things considered, Griffey's contract couldn't be better.
So, he's back. Officially. Griffey has signed with the Mariners, and in so doing saved us from interring dead Angels and saved Atlanta from certain doom. And while the whole thing may not have gone as smoothly as many would've liked, in the end, Griffey chose "family" over family, which - come on, that's just an incredible gesture. I don't have the kind of unconditional Junior loyalty that many of you possess, but even I can't help but feel touched by his decision. This is a guy who wants to make up for his messy departure nearly a decade ago, and I'm perfectly willing to give him that chance. Make us happy, Junior. Make us all happy, the way you used to do.
His first home run in Safeco is going to be God diddly damn insane.