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Originally published February 15, 2009 at 8:42 PM | Page modified February 15, 2009 at 9:37 PM

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Griffey to decide between M's and Braves by Tuesday

Multiple sources have indicated that free-agent slugger Ken Griffey Jr. will decide between the Mariners and Atlanta Braves either by today...

Seattle Times staff reporter

Multiple sources have indicated that free-agent slugger Ken Griffey Jr. will decide between the Mariners and Atlanta Braves either by today or early Tuesday at the latest.

The Braves are said to have no more than $2.5 million in total compensation to offer the 39-year-old, with base salary likely to be less than $2 million. But the Braves do offer Griffey the possibility of seeing his daughter play basketball in Atlanta while his son will be starting high-school football just an hour's flight away in Orlando, Fla., where Griffey has a home.

What Seattle can offer — besides the nostalgia of returning to his first pro team — is likely the opportunity of more playing time as a designated hitter against primarily right-handed pitching. The Braves are said to be doubtful Griffey could make it through a full season playing as a left field platoon partner and likely would have to rest him frequently.

"We've just got to be patient," Mariners CEO Howard Lincoln said Sunday.

The Mariners have roughly $1.5 million of budget room left but could stretch that to accommodate a Griffey deal, given the added revenue he could generate in ticket and merchandising sales.

Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company

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