Curtis Granderson Hitting in the Bronx

The keystone of yesterday’s big trade is the Yankees’s new centerfielder. As Dave Cameron noted Curtis Granderson is an all-star level player: under 30, an above average hitter and an above average fielder at a premium defensive position.

Granderson is a legitimate power threat, a big part of his offensive game. He has a career ISO of .211, and in 2009 busted out with a career high 30 HRs. One reason for the additional HRs was his career low 29.5% GB/BIP second lowest in the game. His power, unlike Joe Mauer’s, is fairly standard pull power.
grand_hr_1209
Comerica Park is a pitcher’s park and Granderson has generally had a better ISO away than home. At Yankee Stadium, which might be the best place for lefty pull-power hitters, this should change. Here is the HR/BIA rate by angle of the ball in play for LHBs in Yankee Stadium versus Comerica Park.
hr_nyadet_1209
Right field, where Granderson hits most of his HRs, at Yankee Stadium has a much higher HR rate than right at Comerica Park. So, Granderson should see a boost to his already solid power in New York. The Yankees got not only a all-star-level player, but one well suited to their park.

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Dave Allen's other baseball work can be found at Baseball Analysts.

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dsss
Guest
dsss

Except for hitting some extra HR’s, I really don’t see why the Yankees traded so much for this guy. He is clearly not the answer, and it muddies the whole OF picture. It may require a deal with Damon that is not necessarily in the Yankees best interest.

Kevin S.
Member
Kevin S.

He is clearly not the answer,

In the sense that he is neither Allen Iverson nor a wearer of the number 42, you would certainly correct. Though 28 is 2/3 of 42, so perhaps he’s on the way there.

Kevin S.
Member
Kevin S.

Bah! Only meant to italicize the first line.

Htmlfail.

neuter_your_dogma
Guest
neuter_your_dogma

42 is retired so Granderson cannot be the Ultimate Question.

Kevin S.
Member
Kevin S.

Mariano Rivera can, though.

Apropos, since nobody can figure out how he’s the greatest reliever ever with one pitch.

SteveP
Guest
SteveP

I’m sorry, what did the Yankees give up that was so valuable? Austin Jackson who, in his dreams hopes he can be as good as Curtis Granderson? Phil Coke, who as a middle reliever is extremely replaceable and could easily be replaced internally by Mike Dunn? Ian Kennedy, a product of the Yankee prospect hype machine, coming off a serious injury, and projects at best to be a #5 pitcher? Yes, Jackson could be a serviceable player (though at this point he’s not much better than Melky or Gardner), Kennedy could find some moderate success in the NL West (it is the NL West after all), and Coke could continue to be a decent middle reliever, but all of those parts are easily replaced.

Granderson is cheap, improves the CF defense (and additionally improves the LF defense if Melky shifts over there), and is in his prime of his career. I have no problem with the Yankees trading young players/prospects if they are getting good cost controlled players in the primes of their careers. The reason they have gotten in trouble in the past is that they were trading their prospects for overpaid veterans that were past their primes. Finally, the Granderson deal doesn’t preclude the Yankees from resigning Damon or Matsui, but it does put them in a better negotiating position with them because now they have options.

Rich in NJ
Member
Rich in NJ

Actually, Kennedy was topping out at 93 in the AFL, and learning to command the cutter he recently added. He has dominated at every level of the mLs, but whatever.

Rob in CT
Guest
Rob in CT

IPK is a good pitching prospect/young pitcher, sure. His ceiling is projected to be a ~#4 starter. He pitched well in the AZFL, though I’m not sure you can draw too many conclusions from that except that he seems to be healthy. I think he can do well in the NL. Good for him, btw.

I’ll miss him, but you have to give something up if you want to get talent. Granderson is a solid upgrade in CF. He’s not old. His contract is reasonable. This is a good trade. It’s not the sort of heist than Swisher for Betemit was, but I’m happy.

Johnny Boy
Guest
Johnny Boy

“Austin Jackson who, in his dreams hopes he can be as good as Curtis Granderson?”

Do people really dream about being as good as Curtis Granderson? Jackson is a good prospect and as is the case of most prospects you won’t know how good they are until they play at the MLB level. Could the Yanks have given Jackson AB’s this year and still been a 1st place team or World Series contender?

Kevin S.
Member
Kevin S.

Dave Allen, for the win.

Johnny Boy
Guest
Johnny Boy

Based on the majority of responses and positive articles on Granderson would it be fair to say most people here think he is an elite overall player who should be a perennial all star?

neuter_your_dogma
Guest
neuter_your_dogma

My dreams involve being paid like Jason Bay.

dp
Guest
dp

Why the NL West bashing? The NL West had the best composite record of any division in the NL last year. As for being a good place for pitchers, I’ll give you Petco and the Giants, but the Rockies and Dodgers are two of the highest scoring teams in the NL and the D’Backs play in a hitters park. Keep in mind, he doesn’t get to pitch against the D’Backs. Actually, based on last year’s stats, he’d be much better off pitching in the NL Central—specifically, the Brewers.

Chip
Guest
Chip

And when we change Dave’s chart to the last 2 year or 4 years? Yeah. We all get that Granderson was off the chart great in 2007. But if we can talk BABIP in 2009, we need to mention 2007 as well. The guy is still good. Almost anyone will take an 830 OPS in CF. But his defense and baserunning has slipped from 2 years ago. He’s likely losing some athleticism, and not reverting to 2007 form anytime soon. 3-4 WAR player, but let’s not get carried away.

noseeum
Guest
noseeum

dsss i have to concur with Kevin S. If you think the following is too much:
-a middle reliever
-a 25 year old minor league control artist who has not yet had major league success who’s ceiling is maybe a number 3 starter
-a center field prospect who without a doubt will not be as good of a player as Granderson over the next two years

then you would never get a trade done in baseball. Even if Jackson becomes a star, it won’t be for a couple of years. He struggled in AAA this year. You can’t expect success in the majors next year that’s for sure.

On top of all that, Granderson is getting paid $5.5 million in 2010 and he’s not even 30. That’s insanely cheap.

The only way to say this is too much is too assume the absolute best for IPK/Jackson and the absolute worst for Granderson.

Johnny Boy
Guest
Johnny Boy

How sure are we that Jackson won’t be as good as Granderson?

Kevin S.
Member
Kevin S.

We’re not *sure*, but I think we can reasonably think that Jackson won’t be a three-win player in his first couple of seasons.

Johnny Boy
Guest
Johnny Boy

Jackson may not be a 3 win player in his first couple of years but that basis enough to say he won’t be a good to great MLB player? It would be completely possible for a player to become a 3 win player as he enters his prime years correct?

Kevin S.
Member
Kevin S.

I don’t think anybody has said he won’t be a good player – just that he’s unlikely to be as good as Granderson, who’s pretty close to being great.

Dr. Spaceman
Guest
Dr. Spaceman

Austin Jackson doesn’t have the power. Curtis Granderson minus the home runs is his ceiling.

noseeum
Guest
noseeum

We don’t need to be sure about Jackson’s ceiling. We can be pretty sure that he won’t grow to that ceiling in the next two years. That was my point. Even if he becomes the next Rickey Henderson, that won’t happen for two years at least. And even if that did happen, this would be a good deal because the Yankees have clearly made themselves better for the next two years without doing anything to hurt their major league club, all while saving money! Jackson was not going to be starting in April. He’d still be in the minors. I just don’t see him having a chance to start on the Yankees until 2011.

You can’t expect anything more from a trade.

Chip
Guest
Chip

Dr. Spacemen – at 22, Granderson hit 11 HR in A+ ball. When he was Jackson’s age. He didn’t look like he had the power either.

noseeum
Guest
noseeum

Chip is correct. Jackson still has time to develop power. But like I said this deal could be a win for the Yanks even if Jackson becomes a hall of famer.

If Granderson only does what he did last year with the park adjustments factored in, and his defense stays a little above average. If he does this for two years, this is a good deal for the Yanks.

Steve
Guest
Steve

the “answer” to what?

what was the question?

how do you improve the defending World Champs? that is an answer to that question, certainly.

not sure what your point about Damon means.