Ken Griffey Jr., the greatest player in Mariners history, will rejoin the club this season as a special consultant.
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The Mariners announced Tuesday morning that Griffey will work with the team at various points throughout Spring Training and the regular season as well as visiting most of Seattle’s Minor League affiliates.
“I’m looking forward to staying very involved with the Mariners, working with the players throughout the organization, staying involved with the community and assisting in other areas of the organization,” Griffey said in a statement. “It’s an exciting time and I’m appreciative of the opportunity.”
Griffey retired last season after 22 years in the Major Leagues, including 13 with Seattle.
This is good news for Mariners fans who wondered if Junior would retain any link to Seattle after leaving the team abruptly last June 2, when he simply released a statement through the club after he’d already begun driving home to Florida.
“Ken has been steadfast in his desire to continue his relationship with the Mariners since his return to Seattle in 2009,” Mariners president Chuck Armstrong said. “We have designed a position that will allow Ken to continue to helpl the franchise succeed on and off the field by consulting with a variety of departments here at the Mariners.”
The club says Griffey will be involved in Major League Baseball Operations and player development as well as its Minor League system, marketing, broadcasting and community relations.
He’s expected to join the club for part of Spring Training in Peoria, Ariz., and then make several trips to Seattle as well as visiting the Mariners’ Minor League affiliates through the season.