"It was always his swing that you wanted to admire or wanted to use," Harper said. "As somebody that changed the game for the better, always smiling, always laughing, hat backwards. Just enjoyed himself everyday."
Harper has not been shy about sharing his feelings that baseball players should be more free to express their personalities on the field, and Griffey's way of doing so -- with something so small as a backwards hat -- brought its share of criticism.
But the biggest moment that Harper remembers about Griffey's career is when he and his father, Ken Griffey Sr., hit back-to-back homers in 1990.
"I don't think that'll ever happen again," Harper said. "One of the coolest things that's ever happened in baseball."
Nationals manager Dusty Baker recently had a conversation with Jim Lefebvre, Griffey's first Major League manager in Seattle, about when the Mariners decided to take a 19-year-old Griffey with the team out of Spring Training. Baker spent years coaching against Griffey and remembers him as a player who could do it all.
"You remember that Nike commercial? Any time you can catch a fly ball in New York and throw somebody out in Seattle you've got to be a bad dude," Baker said, with a laugh. "I loved Griffey."