Curtis Granderson was more than a rising star in centerfield. Granderson was one of the good guys. Major League Baseball recognized him as the Man of the Year for his work with the GrandKids Foundation. The foundation’s mission is “to enforce educational initiatives to youth and to help bring the sport of baseball back to the nation's inner cities.”
In a year where his batting average dropped 20 points, his power increased dramatically. In the process, Granderson went from being a lead off threat to a solid hitter in the 3rd spot. Granderson was not without his faults. His strikeouts increased and he flailed against left-handed pitching.
Still, he provided Detroit fans with a stunning glove and command of the spacious Comerica Park center field.
Detroit did not have much choice but to deal Granderson. Granderson was scheduled to make over $5 million this year and over $8 million the next. Attendance in a season where the Tigers were contenders until the very end was down significantly. No one blames the fans. Unemployment in the state of Michigan exceeds 15%. Household discretionary spending was at a premium so spending a couple hundred dollars on a trip to Comerica Park was not realistic for many families.
As a Tigers fan, I’m hopeful about the trade. There seems to be equal amounts of outrage on all sides of this three-way swap. Yankee fan and D-back fan are thinking they got screwed out of prospects as much as the average Tiger fan is thinking they lost the two of the best players in the franchise.
I have to give Tigers Head Honcho Dave Dombrowski some credit. He traded for Edwin Jackson who had a career year in Detroit. Dombrowski has had the magic touch most of the time. This fan will give him the benefit of the doubt while I hope these prospects pan out sooner rather than later.
In the meantime, I’ll be rooting for Curtis Granderson’s continued success on and off the field. Thanks for six great years in MoTown, Curits.