Seattle Mariners

Griffey undergoes surgery

Ken Griffey Jr., whose return to the Seattle Mariners included battles with a painful left knee last season, has undergone surgery to remove a bone spur.

Griffey had the surgery performed by Dr. Timothy Kremchek in Cincinnati, and is expected to be able to begin cardio work in four to six weeks.

Griffey, 39, batted .214 with 19 home runs and 57 RBI last season, playing almost exclusively as the Mariners’ left-handed hitting designated hitter. Late in the season, Griffey missed more than a week with knee problems.

Though no negotiations have begun between Griffey and the Mariners, it’s expected that he will return next season, even if his playing time may diminish.

Larry LaRue, The News Tribune

ALCS a big hit in N.Y.

Sports fans in New York overwhelmingly chose to watch a decisive baseball playoff game over a regular-season football matchup Sunday night.

The Yankees’ chance to clinch a World Series berth went up against the Giants’ meeting with the Arizona Cardinals.

Fox said its coverage of Game 6 of the American League Championship Series between the Yankees and Los Angeles Angels was watched by 26.4 percent of the market’s homes with televisions and 40 percent of households with TVs in use at the time. The numbers for NBC’s Sunday Night Football were 9.3 and 14.

“Our ratings last night were spectacular,” commissioner Bud Selig said. “To get a 26.4 in New York while the Giants got a 9.3 on Sunday Night Football is stunning.”

Short hops

Tony La Russa agreed to return as St. Louis Cardinals manager with a one-year contract, and Mark McGwire will join his staff as hitting coach. McGwire was not at the news conference, but La Russa and general manager John Mozeliak said there will be no effort to shield McGwire from questions about steroids. … Brooke Hundley, the 22-year-old ESPN production assistant whose affair with baseball analyst Steve Phillips led to his termination, has also been fired from the sports network. Mike Soltys, a representative of ESPN, said Hundley had been fired, but he did not say when or why. … Former Washington Nationals manager Manny Acta was introduced as manager of the Cleveland Indians. … Former Boston assistant general manager Jed Hoyer was introduced as GM of the San Diego Padres. … Former Phillies outfielder Von Hayes has been named manager of the minor league Camden Riversharks, an independent team.