When Kelsey Klevenberg saw a man wrenching on the bronze bat attached to the Ken Griffey Jr. statue, he didn’t anticipate it would actually snap off. But seconds later that’s exactly what happened.
“The fact that it was ‘The Kid’ and an artist’s piece of work really kicked something off in me,” he told Tom and Curley. “I said, this isn’t happening today.”
So Klevenberg took off running. He caught up with the man around First Avenue S. and Royal Brougham Way, where, to his surprise, the man was laying down, apparently out of breath.
“It was a little bit more anti-climactic than I expected it might be,” he said.
Klevenberg found the bat in a nearby garbage can.
The bat is part of the 7-foot-tall Griffey statue located outside the home plate entrance to Safeco Field. The statue, unveiled in April, was sculpted by Lou Cella — the same artist who sculpted the Dave Niehaus statue inside the stadium.
The bat, part of Griffey’s iconic swing, was recovered, a Mariners spokesperson confirmed with KIRO 7.
Though he wasn’t expecting a reward, he said he wouldn’t mind a signed bat that he could use to raffle off for good, such as helping a young baseball fan rebuild a memorabilia collection destroyed in the California wildfires.
He also wouldn’t mind throwing the first pitch before a Mariners game.
At the same time, Klevenberg says the man who took the bat may have “some issues,” and the situation should not be taken lightly.
Listen to the entire interview here.