Quietly, Curtis Granderson Is Matching His Career Numbers

curtis-grandersonSometimes, we Met fans react too quickly.

Curtis Granderson was the big-ticket signing of Sandy Alderson’ 2014 off-season – the puzzling contract of Chris Young notwithstanding. Given the Wilpons’ recent track record and Alderson’s stated preference to avoid giving out contracts longer than three years, Granderson’s four-year, $60 million contract came as more than a mild surprise. He then roiled the waters further during his introductory press conference, when he said “real New Yorkers are Mets fans.” The fact that his last contract was with the Yankees made this statement…interesting. We expected immediate fireworks.

It didn’t happen that way, of course. Granderson got off to a miserable start, finishing April batting .136, with an OPS of .468. Cue the “Jason Bay, Part II” wails from the fans, whose patience by this point had been stretched thinner than Jabba the Hut’s BVDs. Just as he was being written off as another in a long line of organizational busts, he turned the proverbial corner. Starting with a 1-for-5 – the one was an RBI double — performance during a heartbreaking loss to the Phillies on May 9, Granderson has lifted his slash lines to a respectable .242/.361/.418, good for an OPS of .779 and an OPS+ of 123. His real coming out party, of course came in his old stomping grounds, Yankee Stadium a couple of days later. In two games there, he produced a familiar cannonading of the right field fence – his career year of 2011 was built on that very foundation – going 4-for-8 with two homers and five RBI during the Mets’ unlikely mini-sweep. A couple of days after that, he began his still-running streak of reaching base – either via base hit or walk — in 34 straight starts.

If you look, the Curtis Granderson from May 9 on certainly appears to be the “real” Curtis Granderson. Baseball-Reference.com’s invaluable 162 game average line tells us that his 2014 slash line will probably end up nearly a dead-on match for his career: .260/.341/.484. This looks to be a far cry from the Bay/Carlos Baerga/Roberto Alomar model of superstar inefficiency so beloved of the pessimistic wing of Met fandom and the eager-to-pounce media, doesn’t it?

The Granderson signing has always struck your intrepid columnist as analogous to the signing of Cliff Floyd prior to the 2003 season. Was he the guy to lead them to the promised land immediately? Of course not, but he was the guy who would still be a key piece when they arrived. Same with Granderson: he should still be roaming right field at Citi when the team delivers on its promise in 2015, 2016, or whenever those pesky goal posts stop moving.

For all the moaning at the beginning, we fans are damned lucky to have him here.

Follow me on Twitter @CharlieHangley.

9 comments for “Quietly, Curtis Granderson Is Matching His Career Numbers

  1. Name
    June 26, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    Can you blame Met fans for panicking? Granderson started off his tenure so bad, it was probably historic. I’d wager his .468 OPS in his first month is probably in the bottom 5 for any player who was signed and guanrateed a starting job, and probably the worst for a guy who signed a multi year deal worth at least 25 million.

  2. Jerry Grote
    June 26, 2014 at 1:47 pm

    If we had a half-way decent coaching staff, they’d plug him in at lead off and stop jerking this team around.

    He’s got the best history for it of any player on the team, he’s been the best at it on the team this year, he’s got the best OBP of the team.

    It’s not like we’re consistently using the best current hitter in like … oh, let’s say the 3 spot or the 4 spot.

    No. That would make too much farking sense. Let’s have him hit 5th. Because Eric farking Campbell should be given cleanup.

    WTFWTFWTF? Terry – don’t let those 200+ Major league home runs or his current 900+ OPS fool you. Campbell’s your guy to bat clean up, and the guy with a .320 OBP should bat leadoff.


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  3. Chris F
    June 26, 2014 at 5:14 pm

    I think we all failed to appreciate the totality of expectation, changing leagues and the different styles of play, different stadiums, different pitchers, and of course the astonishingly poor coaching that we get. I think its remarkable all things considered how far he has come.

    Granny — we love ya!!!

  4. Chris F
    June 26, 2014 at 5:22 pm

    Mostly off topic, but it came up in chatter and was kinda shocked, so I thought Id share.

    We got to asking the longest Mets consecutive game winning streak this year. Its 3 games. And it turns out the last 4 consecutive game streak happened nearly a year ago. In the mean time, across MLB, there have been more than 120 4+ consecutive game winning streaks.

    Ugly. Ugly. Ugly.

    • steevy
      June 26, 2014 at 6:10 pm

      I’m sure it has something to do with TC. 🙂

    • Jerry Grote
      June 27, 2014 at 7:46 am

      Yeah, but they haven’t had any 20 game losing streaks.


    • Jerry Grote
      June 27, 2014 at 7:55 am

      Because it doesn’t have any other place to go:

      Reynolds is playing SS at LV, even with Wilmer Flores around – and he’s hitting a *ton*. And even with Tovar around at AA, Herrera is getting reps at SS.

      I would not be surprised if Reynolds gets a call up – perhaps a lot sooner than anyone thinks.

  5. Steve S.
    June 27, 2014 at 9:47 am

    Mets’ fans are too quick to boo. We should be supportive of our players and boo the Wilpons.

  6. Patrick Albanesius
    June 27, 2014 at 9:16 pm

    We are not real Mets fans you see, because we don’t go to games or support the team enough. I think there was a memo sent out about it. Did you get the memo, Steve? It should have been attached to the one about the TPS reports.

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