I grew up in Cincinnati in the same neighborhood where Ken Griffey Jr. did. He lived with his grandmother a few blocks from where my parents lived. This was in the mid-1970s, when the Big Red Machine was at its most dominant. Anyway, Kenny and I played in the same little league (different teams), and as I recall he played firstbase.
Flash forward to January 1988. I’m a junior at the University of Cincinnati, and Griffey had just completed a very unsuccessful 1987 season at Class A which ended with a back injury. One saturday afternoon my roommate and I are at a place called “the Clubhouse” which has indoor batting cages and practice fields. Most of the people there are younger kids, filling up the slow-pitch batting cages. My friend and I are down at the end, alone in the batting cage throwing balls at 90 mph. Ken Griffey Jr. walks in and notices my friend wearing a t-shirt from Moeller high school, were Griffey attended. They strike up a conversation, and when I exit the cage, I start telling Griffey about growing up in the same neighborhhod. We talked about some of our old friends, and about the hard season he had in the minors. Griffey was wearing an Atlanta Braves sweatsuit (his dad was playing with the Braves at the time). After talking for about ten minutes, Griffey got in the batting cage and looked awful. He waved at a couple of pitches and exited before his time was up. Then he left the building. Nobody else in the place recognized him.
Three months later he was the opening day starting center fielder for the Seattle Mariners, and the rest is history.
Which means that there are a couple dozen kids in Cincinnati now who have no idea that they spent an afternoon at the batting cages with Ken Griffey, Jr.