Mariners Insider Blog

Ken Griffey Jr. at 42: 'the ultimate dad'

Yes, Ken Griffey Jr. is still a 'special consultant' with the Seattle Mariners, and he'll be in spring training with them at some point, but USA Today and writer Paul White caught up with the Griffey family - and football was the focal point.

Junior, wife Melissa and sons Trey and Tevyn are all interviewed, and while the story is in large part about wide receiver Trey, it's a portrait of Griffey as a father, too.

Griffey is 'the ultimate dad now,'  Trey said, and Junior talks about parenting in a way that makes his priorities clear.

"The key is knowing your kids inside and out. I don't care what kind of job you have, your No. 1 job is to make sure you take care of your kids and that they can succeed in what their dreams are … not your dreams or anybody else's dream,"  Griffey said. 

It's a wonderful read, and as someone who covered him throughout his career, I can tell you Junior was always an involved parent - sometimes from great distance. When baseball took him far from family, he had every event - from first day of school to daughter Taryn's basketball games - video-taped. At night after games, he'd download the video and watch every moment, then call the kids the next morning.

Not quite two years into retirement from the game, Griffey doesn't talk baseball unless he's at work with the Mariners young players. Son Trey offers advice to would-be interviewers.

"That's the one way you can talk to him is by talking about us. Now, if you ask him, he really won't say anything about baseball,"  Trey said.