Griffey Jr. on new MLB role: ‘I’m trying to get kids to play baseball’

Eleven years after his retirement, Hall of Fame outfielder will advise Rob Manfred

Former Cincinnati Reds outfielder Ken Griffey Jr. will serve as a senior advisor to Commissioner Rob Manfred, Major League Baseball announced Friday.

“I am humbled to be asked to work with Major League Baseball in this role,” Griffey Jr. said in a press release. “It will be an honor to represent the best sport in the world and to promote our game among today’s youth.”

Griffey Jr., 51, played nine (2000-08) of his 22 seasons with the Reds. He ranks seventh in career home runs (630). He retired in 2010 and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2016.

In the role, Griffey Jr. will:

• Provide consultation on baseball operations and youth baseball development.

• Work on improving diversity at amateur levels of the game.

• Serve as an ambassador at youth baseball initiatives and at special events such as the All-Star Game and postseason games.

“We are thrilled that Ken will represent Major League Baseball on some of our sport’s most important stages, alongside our current and future stars,” Manfred said. “We welcome the perspective and insights that Ken gained as an historic player, as a parent, and as someone who has spent his life in and around our great game.”

In an interview with the MLB Network on Friday, Griffey Jr. said, “I’m trying to get kids to play baseball. I think it’s the greatest sport in the world and I want more kids to play.”

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