Most Seattle Mariners fans will remember the team’s interleague game against the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday, June 24 as a part of the return of Ken Griffey, Jr. For one Islander Mariners fan, that day will be remembered as the game 6-year-old Connor Hanson stole second.
Hanson was randomly chosen to run out on the field during the middle of the sixth inning and literally steal second base and run back. While on the field, Griffey patted the Island youngster on the back, had his name announced on the loud speaker and put his name up on the scoreboard for all 46,000 in attendance to see. Hanson took the base and many memories home.
“The base is almost as big as he is and he needed some assistance pulling it out of the ground before running back with it, but once it was in his hands he didn’t let go and instantly rose to ‘celebrity’ status the whole rest of the game,” said Debbie Hanson, Connor’s mother. “People made the connection when they saw Connor and the base together and were giving him high fives, thumbs up and telling him what a great job he’d done.”
Debbie also noted that the Mariners marketing department is sending the Hanson family DVD footage of Connor Hanson’s “theft.”
Currently, the base is located in a spot of honor in the families living room where it’s on exhibition. Kid friends, and their dads, are excited to see [and touch] the base that Griffey ran across three times, including two home runs.
Connor Hanson attends Island Park Elementary and will be in first grade next year. He played MI Little League T-ball this year for the Hooks and he proudly told a Mariner’s official that he’s moving on to Machine Pitch next year.