Ken Griffey Sr. began his 19-year baseball career with the Cincinnati Reds in 1973 and became a valuable member of the “Big Red Machine”. Griffey's most successful season came in 1976, when he batted a career high .336, finished eighth in the Most Valuable Player voting and was named to The Sporting News National League All-Star team. That same year, the Reds won their second consecutive World Series title.
After the 1981 season, Griffey was traded to the New York Yankees, where he played from 1982 to 1986. Injuries plagued Griffey, who hit .306 with 11 homers and 46 RBIs in his best season with the Yankees. In 1986, Griffey was traded mid-season to the Atlanta Braves, where he played for only one full season. Griffey was traded back to Cincinnati in the middle of the 1988 season, where he played until 1990 when he was traded to the Seattle Mariners. He retired after the 1991 season.
In 2,097 games, Griffey compiled a lifetime batting average of .296, with 152 home runs and 859 RBI. Griffey was a three-time All-Star and the Most Valuable Player of the 1980 All-Star Game.
When his son, Ken Jr., joined the Mariners in 1989, the Griffeys made history as the first father-and-son tandem to play Major League Baseball simultaneously. When Griffey Sr. joined his son with Seattle in 1990, they became the first father-and-son teammates in baseball history. He also hit back-to-back home runs with his son on September 14, 1990.
Griffey was inducted into the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame in 2004.