Tuesday, November 12, 2013

O Curtis, you were a little short of Grandish

So ends another mini-era in what looks like a bad millennium. Yesterday, Curtis Granderson turned down the Yankees' one-year qualifying offer, and the team's response has been to say, "Pass the meat loaf. What's for desert?"

I don't blame the Grandy Man for leaving. These are tough times. Still, I thought he just might be that rare player who says, "I didn't give you much last year because of the injuries, so I'll play this year for whatever you offer." I know local contractors who, if they mess up a plumbing repair, will come back and fix the thing for free, because that's their reputation, and that's how they were raised. Professional athletes never do that... I guess, because that's the way they were raised.

Still, the Grandy Man is gone, and I think I speak for the Yankiverse in saying, "Pass the meat loaf. What's for desert?"

Here's what we got over four years.

No World Series ring.
No American League championship. 
Fifty five stolen bases.
115 home runs. 
549 strikeouts.
A batting average that plummeted into the .220s. 
Acid reflux whenever we see Austin Jackson and Ian Kennedy. 
Some great catches in CF.
A final ALCS in which he went  0 for 11 with Ks.

Baseball Reference publishes a statistical twin for every MLB player. It's a way to put a hitter into a broader context. Here are the Grandy Man's top 10 mirror players.
Well, it's not the worst list ever compiled. Basically, it's a list of also-rans and almost-weres - players who had a good year or two, and then coasted for five or six. Nobody on that list makes the Hall of Fame. Nobody gets a plaque on the wall.

When the Yankees traded for Curtis Granderson, they hoped for future superstar. They wanted more than Wally Post.

Well, he's gone. Curtis Granderson: Hell of a guy! Class act! Charity work! Well spoken! Stood the scrutiny of NYC with dignity. Excited to see him come. Excited to see him go.


JM said...

I had a discussion with a young sports fan here at the office yesterday. He says you need a guy who hits 40 HRs even if his BA is .230 and he strikes out a lot. HRs are game changers...you have to put guys who get on base in front of him...the days of high average and big power are gone, except for a couple of freaks like Cabrera.

He may be right about that last part. I don't know. But whenever Grandy struck out with guys on base, or hit into a DP or some other completely unproductive out, I cringed and curled up into a fetal position. I have this weird, old-fashioned notion that a guy who can hit maybe .290, doesn't strike out an inordinate number of times, and only has 25 HRs or even 20 is going to be more valuable in more situations and more games.

We used to have a field full of such guys in the late 90s. Seemed to work.

But what do I know...

Alphonso said...

The harsh truth is that Grandy, and the others who walked away from qualifying offers, know that the Yankees are a last-placed club for the next several years.

They are aging ( duh), and want a shot at the big time. Watch and see how many sign with, say, the Cardinals.

They are disheartened by the absence of change, and the absence of any discussion of shaking things up, by the Yankees.

Firing the towel guy in the weight room doesn't smell of excitement and a renewed commitment to winning.

It smells old, stale and ugly.

JM said...

What Alphonso said.

KD said...

Maybe I'm wrong but didn't Paul O'Neill take less to stay with the Yanks?