Griffey's decision likely Wednesday
Veteran denies report he's already chosen Braves over Mariners
PEORIA, Ariz. -- Free-agent outfielder Ken Griffey Jr., who is being hotly pursued by the Mariners and Braves, told MLB.com on Tuesday that he has not reached a decision on which team he will play for next season.
"We are still kicking things around with my family and have not made a decision," Griffey said from his Orlando, Fla., home. "This is the first time in my career that I have been a free agent, and it's nerve-wracking."The 39-year-old said he hopes to make a decision "later today or early tomorrow morning."
It most likely will come Wednesday. High-ranking officials from both organizations said later Tuesday that no announcement was expected Tuesday night.
Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik came into the press room at the Peoria Sports Complex at about 5:45 p.m. MT and said, "We haven't heard anything. We haven't talked to Ken and we haven't talked to [agent] Brian Goldberg. We don't know anything."
The Mariners continued to monitor the situation Wednesday, but a club spokesperson said there would be no comment until Griffey is signed by them or the Braves.Club president Chuck Armstrong returned to Seattle as scheduled on Wednesday afternoon, and it's unlikely any announcement would be made by Griffey before he first has talked to the club executive.
During a telephone interview from his Orlando home, Griffey said it was a difficult decision because "I love Seattle." But the Braves offer him a chance to stay closer to home.
"You know how close I am to my wife and kids," he said.
As of Tuesday afternoon, Griffey was huddled with his wife, Melissa, and Goldberg.
Earlier Tuesday, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that Griffey told a close friend that he had chosen the Braves over the Mariners.
Griffey said he heard about the story and sent a text message to Zduriencik and Mariners CEO Howard Lincoln. Armstrong also received a call while at Sea-Tac Airport from Griffey and was informed that a decision had not yet been made.
Jim Street is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.