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Your take: Griffey's going home

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Ken Griffey Jr. has decided to head back to Seattle this season, agreeing Wednesday night to a one-year contract to play where he became a star.

Now, obviously, “The Kid” is all grown up — and he’s got 611 home runs this time around, good for fifth-place on the career list — but there’s bound to be a resurgence of interest in Griffey’s key cards and memorabilia as the nostalgia kick of him in a Mariners uniform once again draws upon memories from a lifetime ago (or so it seems) in the hobby.

After all, the 1989 Upper Deck Griffey really is the ’52 Mantle of this generation — a card that’s iconic, symbolizes a shift in the industry, and, ironically, was so overproduced that it’s not too tough for many collectors to own one.

Just a thought … it also doesn’t hurt the hobby that Upper Deck has autographed buyback cards in its 2009 packs, noting “20 years” for the company’s anniversary — but something that also now notes his return to Seattle — does it? (By the way, two of those cards have hit eBay — but neither auction actually closed. One ended early when bidding had already topped $1,000.)

We want to know … do you think this career-capping season in Seattle will spark interest in the hobby as a whole — or just spark interest in Junior?

Chris Olds has collected sports cards and memorabilia since 1987. Before coming to Beckett Media, he wrote about the hobby for the Orlando Sentinel on his blog, SportsStuff, and for the San Antonio Express-News and The Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News. Do you have a comment, question or idea? Send e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com.

4 Comments

President Obama

griffey the dh? and whoever wrote 20 years on the bottom of that card deserves to be fired.

Posted February 19, 2009 at 4:00 am | Permalink

Wait, I thought Cincinnati was home? Oh, I see… that was just to get a huge contract. Nevermind. Welcome home again Griff.

Posted February 19, 2009 at 7:04 am | Permalink
chrisolds

Actually, Griffey wrote it …

Posted February 19, 2009 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

As a denizen of the Pacific Northwest, I can tell you that Mariners fans have almost unilaterally received the news with jubilation. Griffey breathed life into a lethargic baseball community that’s previous crowning achievement was to play one year host to a spit-balling, junior AARP member hanging on to get his 300th victory.

Junior’s return to Seattle is going to revitalize the Mariner faithful…but M’ fans are indeed a fickle bunch.

Perform and we are infatuated with you, hit a prolonged slump and we will whine you out of town.

The adulation of all things Griffey will last as long as his 39 year old body and trademark worthy swing holds up. I just hope that is long enough to receive a standing ovation at September’s end.

Posted February 20, 2009 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

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