While covering the Phillie Phanatic's birthday last month -- I was actually covering the Phillies, but let's be clear what the real attraction was -- I was treated to an appearance by the Zooperstars.
While the Zooperstars and other Philadelphia-area mascots were celebrating the Phanatic's b-day, suddenly Ken Giraffey Jr. had a heart attack or something and suddenly fell on to the ground and began to deflate. They attempted to revive him with a bicycle pump, but to no avail. The Phanatic, though, gave Ken Giraffey mouth-to-mouth and saved the day1.
I bring up this story because maybe somebody could have given Ken Griffey Jr. mouth-to-mouth, or at least woke him up, when he apparently slept through a pinch-hit opportunity last week.
The News Tribiune of Tacoma, Wash., reports that Griffey sometimes retires to the clubhouse to text friends and watch the TV broadcast during games.When he was not called up to pinch-hit the other night at what seemed like an opportune time, manager Don Wakamatsu didn't have an answer. But two Mariners' players did!
"He was asleep in the clubhouse," one player said. "He'd gone back about the fifth inning to get a jacket and didn't come back. I went back in about the seventh inning - and he was in his chair, sound asleep."
The other player, who knows Griffey a little better, tried to rationalize. "He doesn't sleep well at night, he's away from his family, he's comfortable in the clubhouse," he said. "They could have awakened him.
To be fair, the Seattle weather would tire me out, too. Then again, if 47-year-old Jamie Moyer can pitch a complete-game two-hitter, I think 40-year-old Ken Griffey can get through a game without passing out.
1 If I were one to be offended by things, I would think this skit is the most offensive thing I'd ever seen. They may as well have had the Phanatic doing lines of coke.