Seattle Mariners

24 for No. 24: Ken Griffey Jr.’s most memorable moments

WATCH: Former Mariners teammates recall the greatness of Ken Griffey Jr.

The megawatt smile. The backwards-turned baseball hat. That sweet swing and the homers it produced. Former teammates Jay Buhner, Edgar Martinez and Mariners lead broadcaster Rick Rizzs weigh in on Ken Griffey Jr., Seattle's greatest baseball playe
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The megawatt smile. The backwards-turned baseball hat. That sweet swing and the homers it produced. Former teammates Jay Buhner, Edgar Martinez and Mariners lead broadcaster Rick Rizzs weigh in on Ken Griffey Jr., Seattle's greatest baseball playe

Ken Griffey Jr. will be inducted into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame this weekend in Cooperstown, New York.

From scoring the winning run in the 1995 American League Division series, to hitting tape-measure home runs and crashing into walls, here are the top moments of his illustrious 22-year career:

No. 1: Oct. 8, 1995. In arguably the biggest moment in franchise history, Griffey scored the game-winning run from first base to cap Seattle’s 6-5 come-from-behind, 11th-inning victory over the New York Yankees to win the ALDS.

 
Home runs in eight consecutive games? Yep, Griffey did that. AP file

No. 2: July 28, 1993. On the first pitch he saw from Minnesota’s Willie Banks to lead off the seventh inning, Griffey tied a major-league record by hitting a home run in an eighth consecutive game. It was his 30th blast of that season.

No. 3: Jan. 6, 2016. Along with catcher Mike Piazza, Griffey was elected to the Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility. He set a record by being listed on 99.32 percent of the voters’ ballots — 437 of 440.

No. 4: Nov. 12, 1997. After hitting 56 home runs and driving in a career-high 147 runs, Griffey was selected just the 13th unanimous AL most valuable player in baseball history. It would be the only MVP nod of his career.

No. 5: April 3, 1989. At age 19, in his first major-league at-bat, Griffey doubled off Oakland pitcher Dave Stewart. The line drive hit off the base of the wall in left center.

No. 6: Sept. 14, 1990. First, Ken Griffey Sr. hit a home run out to left field in the first inning against the Los Angeles Angels. And Griffey Jr. followed by hitting one in almost the same spot, making them the first father-son duo to homer in the same game.

No. 7: Oct. 4, 2009. Following the Mariners’ final game of the 2009 season — a 4-3 win over Texas — Griffey was lifted on his teammates’ shoulders and carried around Safeco Field for a final victory lap.

 
"Happy Father's Day dad. I got you 500 home runs." AP file

No. 8: June 20, 2004. With his parents in attendance, Griffey hit career home run No. 500 with Cincinnati on Father’s Day in St. Louis off Cardinals pitcher Matt Morris. It also was his 2,143rd career hit, tying his father’s career total.

No. 9: April 10, 1989. In his first game in the Kingdome, Griffey hit the first pitch he saw from Chicago White Sox pitcher Eric King for his first career home run.

No. 10: July 1990. In just his second season, Griffey became the first Mariners player to be elected into the starting lineup of an All-Star Game.

No. 11: April 15, 1997. After getting permission from Major League Baseball, Griffey wore No. 42 in honor of the 50th anniversary of Jackie Robinson’s debut. It’s a tradition every player has continued since 2008.

No. 12: April 26, 1990. It was the catch that set the tone for Griffey’s career in center field, taking a home run away from Jesse Barfield by climbing the wall in left center at Yankee Stadium.

No. 13: April 6, 2009. In his first game back with Seattle after nine seasons in Cincinnati, Griffey connected on his record-tying eighth Opening Day home run at Minnesota.

 
Ouch! AP file

No. 14: May 26, 1995. This one was painful: Griffey broke his left wrist crashing into the right-center wall in the Kingdome to rob Baltimore’s Kevin Bass of extra bases. He missed 73 games.

No. 15: June 22-24, 2007. In his first at-bat at Safeco FIeld since his 2000 trade to Cincinnati, Griffey singled off Mariners pitcher Ryan Feierabend. He went 5-for-13 with two home runs in the series.

No. 16: May 25, 1991. It is known as the “Spider Man” catch — perhaps Griffey’s finest — as he robs New York’s Ruben Sierra of extra bases in the Kingdome in right center.

No. 17: June 9, 2008. After his blast deep to right field off pitcher Mark Hendrickson, Griffey became the sixth man in major league history to hit 600 home runs. He finished with 630.

No. 18: Feb. 10, 2000. Yielding to his wishes, Seattle traded Griffey to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for pitchers Brett Tomko and Jake Meyer, infielder Antonio Perez and outfielder Mike Cameron.

No. 19: July 14, 1992. “The Kid” stole the show at the 1992 All-Star Game, going 3-for-3 with a double and home run in the AL’s 13-6 win in San Diego. He was named the game’s MVP.

No. 20: Sept. 7, 1997. The 50-home run plateau had never been reached in Seattle – until Griffey homered off Minnesota’s Bob Tewksbury. He finished with 56 that season.

No. 21: June 27, 1999. Griffey closed the Kingdome in style, hitting a home run against Texas, and robbing slugger Juan Gonzalez of a home run in a 5-2 victory.

 
There's no place like home. AP file

No. 22: Feb. 21, 2009. Wanting to return to his original team, Griffey signed a one-year, $2 million free-agent deal with the Mariners. He ended up making $3.15 million that year with incentives.

No. 23: Aug. 10, 2013. Griffey became the seventh inductee into the Mariners’ Hall of Fame with an emotional ceremony at Safeco Field.

No. 24: Oct. 1999. At 29, Griffey was voted to baseball’s “All-Century” team. He was the youngest member to be honored on that squad.

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