• Curtis Granderson

    Posted by on November 13th, 2009 · Comments (16)

    Via Joel Sherman the other day -

    In a cost-cutting frame of mind, the Tigers have let teams now that Curtis Granderson could be had for the right package, an NL executive told The Post.

    Granderson would be attractive to many teams, with the Yankees near the top of the list. They have long searched for a premium solution in center since Bernie Williams left his prime, but now they also face the loss of the lefty power of free agents Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui. Granderson hit a career-high 30 homers last year.

    Brian Cashman met with Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski at the now-concluded GM Meetings, but it is not believed the two did any more than discuss needs and available players. However, the two have a good relationship and have done significant trades before, going back to when Dombrowski was in Florida and obtained Mike Lowell from the Yanks to the more recent Gary Sheffield deal and the swap of Kyle Farnsworth for Ivan Rodriguez.

    The Yankees have a touted center field prospect in Austin Jackson, who could be the centerpiece for a deal, though Detroit would have a market outside of just The Bronx.

    Granderson, who will play at 29 next year, is owed $25.75 million over the next three years and has an option in 2013. He is not a player that Detroit truly wants to trade and neither is the available Edwin Jackson, another player who will draw interest not just from the Yankees, but the Mets, too.

    But the Tigers are supporting a top payroll in one of the cities hit hardest by the economic downturn, and they have many long-term commitments to players who are just about untradeable, including Magglio Ordonez, Carlos Guillen, Jeremy Bonderman, Dontrelle Willis and Nate Robertson. In all, the Tigers have 10 players under control for next season at $100 million with arbitration-eligible ace Justin Verlander due a raise to about $7 million, and Jackson and Gerald Laird also in line for big raises.

    Granderson does have a downside. He is terrible against lefties (.183 last year) and strikes out a ton (141 times last year) and though he steals bases (20 last year) he is not known as a strong instinctual base stealer. However, his power has blossomed in a park not nearly as becoming to a lefty hitter as Yankee Stadium and he is known as one of the most media friendly and amicable players in the game.

    In terms of “make-up,” Granderson is off-the-charts…probably Derek Jeter like, in that regard. If the Yankees don’t bring back Johnny Damon, and could get Granderson in a favorable deal, I would not have any issues with him being their left-fielder in 2010. Of course, yes, it all depends on the cost…in terms of the players New York would have to give up..

    Comments on Curtis Granderson

    1. November 13th, 2009 | 12:04 pm

      BTW, Corey’s been MIA the last 6 days. Anyone seen him around elsewhere?

    2. #15
      November 13th, 2009 | 12:29 pm

      Too many K’s (I really hate that) and a big hole vs. lefties. Damon is out. A stronger defense to be sure. But, who becomes the number 2 hitter? I think this is chatter to keep Boras and Damon in line with contract demands. I still like the same two experienced and very capable bats in our 1 and 2 spots for next year. Now, if they’d throw in Verlander as part of a bigger package…..

    3. bfriley76
      November 13th, 2009 | 1:06 pm

      .210/.270/.344

      Those are his career numbers against Left-Handed pitching. Those are the numbers of a guy who should be platooned. I’m guessing, considering his status, the asking price would be significant, in which case, I’d pass.

    4. Scout
      November 13th, 2009 | 1:28 pm

      Steve: why would you play Granderson, an effective center fielder, in left?

      His splits are poor, but the Yankees have strong right-handed and switch hitters. Granderson could be buried at the bottom of the order against lefties. He has impressive strengths, including good power.

      But this conversation occurs in a vacuum. Until we know what the Tigers want for him and what the Yankees are willing to offer, it is impossible to assess the merits of a deal.

    5. November 13th, 2009 | 1:40 pm

      @ Scout: Check out his UZR/150 for 2009 and 2008. He really should be a LF and not a CF.

    6. clintfsu813
      November 13th, 2009 | 4:34 pm

      Didnt see anywhere else to post this..no Watercooler today. But I just heard Jody Macdonald on XMRadio refer to a player having a good postseason as an “Arod type of Postseason.” I literally almost wrecked my car laughing so hard…man how things change huh?

    7. JeremyM
      November 13th, 2009 | 8:26 pm

      Anyone read SI’s World Series wrap-up? It was kind of a letdown, but there was an interesting part about Pettitte being hooked up to an IV after his game 3 start to help his body recover. He wasn’t kidding when he said he was gassed after that one.

      By the way, they’ve run about a million articles hating on A-Rod but can barely manage a sentence about his performance this October. Even Steve shows A-Rod more love than that :)

    8. Scout
      November 13th, 2009 | 8:35 pm

      @ Steve Lombardi:

      If Granderson is not suited to center, he loses a great deal of his value-added for the Yankees. There is nothing special about a corner outfielder who strikes out a ton, bats .250, and hits about 30 homers. In fact, it sounds a lot like another Nick Swisher, with a lower OBP.

    9. November 13th, 2009 | 8:40 pm

      JeremyM wrote:

      By the way, they’ve run about a million articles hating on A-Rod but can barely manage a sentence about his performance this October. Even Steve shows A-Rod more love than that

      I’m just surprised SI didn’t run the Selena Roberts piece on him in the celebratory champions issue of SI.

    10. JeremyM
      November 13th, 2009 | 9:25 pm

      No kidding, followed by the Joe Torre book excerpt.

    11. 77yankees
      November 13th, 2009 | 9:37 pm

      Ditto on what #15 said, you’ll have too many strikeouts in this lineup. Swish, Tex, and Posada all topped 100 K. A-Rod had 98 whiffs in 125 games.

    12. EHawk
      November 14th, 2009 | 10:56 am

      @ 77yankees:
      It doesn’t matter because Carl Crawford will sign with the Yankees next offseason. You can bank on that…So I’d love to have an outfield of Granderson, Crawford and Jackson in the future. I think Crawford could play an effective CF.

    13. Evan3457
      November 14th, 2009 | 11:16 am

      77yankees wrote:

      Ditto on what #15 said, you’ll have too many strikeouts in this lineup. Swish, Tex, and Posada all topped 100 K. A-Rod had 98 whiffs in 125 games.

      Actually, that’s not quite right.
      In the 1st place, Melky and Gardner, who held CF this season, combined to K roughly 99 times. Pro-rating for 825 PA as opposed to, say, 675, that’s about 80 K’s in the CF position, without trading for Granderson. If Granderson plays about 140 games in center, I estimate that will add about 50 K’s to the Yanks total. They were next to last in the league in K’s this year, regardless what it looked like on TV. An addition 50 K’s would have moved them up 5 spots to 8th, (possibly 7th; the Tigers might drop below, depending on who they wind up putting in center) and still below the league average.

      In addition, Posada’s K’s may well stay the same or go down, if the Yanks cut his playing time further. He is starting to lose it with the bat, though, his K rate was up and his BB rate was down from past years, and that’s usually the first sign of serious decline for a hitter his age. He begins to cheat on the FB to catch up to it. It happened to Bernie his last couple of seasons, too.

      However, Berroa and Ransom were whiff-o-matics while replacing A-Rod, with 31 K’s in just 101 at bats, and Pena also K’d 20 times in 120 AB. That’s about 10 fewer K’s right there. I also think Tex’ K rate will drop slightly, because he won’t be as overanxious early in the year. If they can get him to stop chasing low changeups and curves, that’ll work wonders.

      In any event, I’d trade for Granderson, depending on the price. Then I’d try to re-sign Damon. I move Granderson to #6 vs righties, and # 9 vs. lefties, and I try to split up Swisher and Granderson, if possible.

    14. 77yankees
      November 14th, 2009 | 3:13 pm

      I’d try to re-sign Damon, and then go all in for Carl Crawford for 2011.

    15. sanair
      November 14th, 2009 | 3:31 pm

      Sad state of affairs in Detroit. It’s one thing for a ownership to sell of players in order to capture as much profit as they can; it’s another to do so because your city faces a near 30% unemployment rate. Here’s to hoping a good baseball city can land on its feet.

    16. December 8th, 2009 | 8:45 pm

      [...] brings us to Curtis Granderson. Last month, I had this to say about him: In terms of “make-up,” Granderson is off-the-charts…probably Derek Jeter like, in that [...]

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