Posted by Ernest Dove at 9:30 AM
Amongst all the hysteria in Mets land regarding Matt Harvey's return, the status of hot prospects Noah Syndergaard and Steven Matz, the recent string of TJS pitchers and...........Oh Wilmer.......... there's another quiet storyline going on here. Today, for me, it's all about Grandy.
So we know about the hiring of Kevin Long as the new hitting coach. We know about some of the recent reports on his great work, coupled with some internet grumblings of his apparent loving of attention in the spotlight. There is also the familiarity he has with Granderson when they were together with the Yankees.
Low and behold, here we are, a couple weeks into the spring season, and has anyone noticed what's going on with Grandyman? I'm not trying to overreact to spring training results, but the fact is that Granderson is currently hitting .368, with a homer, 5 RBIs and a rediculous 1.059 OPS in 9 spring games for the Mets. Maybe we shouldnt judge him based on spring stats. However, maybe we also shouldnt judge the man based off of what amounted to a pretty much almost unrealistically bad April 2014, of which his average and overall production seemed to never truly recover from last year.
Curtis Granderson enters 2015 (I believe) as the second highest paid player on the team. He also enters as of the most scrutinized players within the organization, based on his salary. Yet Terry Collins and Company (speaking of highly scrutinized) have immediately discussed, determined and followed through on strategy to get Granderson looks at the top of the order, either first or second during most of the spring games this year. And he has delivered up to this point.
Sure, I'm not saying that he will be competing for a batting title this year. And I'm assuming he hasn't forgotten how to strikeout often, but to me all signs point to an improved overall season for Granderson, and most likely coiniciding with an improved Mets offense.
Perhaps the other forgottens storyline is the shortening of the fenses at Citi Field in right, which still remain coming into the season. Even though nobody is predicing another 40 homer season for Granderson, like he had in the Bronx, he still has the potential to produce at a 25+ homer level, combined possibly with more timely hitting, and an improved average. So we now come closer to the start of the season. And, all of a sudden, we are looking at a hot Granderson, possibly hitting right behind a hot hitting Lagares, and hitting right in front of a healthy David Wright. I have to say, I'm liking the look of this Mets offense this year. And Granderson, known for his leadership and overall respect for the game, can definitely help lead the charge for the coming season ahead.