Baker shuffles lineup; Griffey hits second Print
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Saturday, 03 May 2008 13:25
MLB Headline News

 ATLANTA (AP) -Ken Griffey Jr. continued his pursuit of 600 homers from an unusual lineup spot on Saturday night.
Cincinnati manager Dusty Baker, looking to shake up his lineup, moved Griffey to No. 2 in the lineup against the Atlanta Braves.
Griffey, hitting .248 with four homers and 15 RBIs this season, has 597 career homers and has spent most of his career in the middle of lineups.
Baker said he was looking for a change after seeing his team held to two runs in back-to-back losses.
``I'm not crazy about changing the lineup,'' Baker said. ``I'm trying to find something that will work for a long period of time.''
Brandon Phillips hit third and rookie Joey Votto was the cleanup hitter for the first time in his career.
Griffey, who has hit third in 27 games and cleanup in his other start this season, didn't mind the move up to No. 2.
``I'm trying to volunteer for the leadoff position,'' Griffey said before the game. ``I'm working on that.''
Griffey hit second for the first time since May 3, 2005, against St. Louis. Most of his 62 career starts as the No. 2 hitter came while with Seattle.
It's not as if Baker hasn't tried other lineup options. Griffey is Cincinnati's eighth No. 2 hitter. Jeff Keppinger, with 20 starts as the No. 2 hitter, has been the most popular option.
Keppinger hit seventh on Saturday night.
Baker said he made out the lineup without checking with Griffey.
``He had offered to bat second one time, in spring training or something,'' Baker said. ``I don't know if he was serious or not. But he offered it.''
Ryan Freel was Baker's leadoff hitter - the spot a smiling Griffey insisted he wants.
``I'm just trying to lead the game off with a home run,'' Griffey said. ``That's all that is.''
 

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