Originally posted on Bronx Pinstripes  |  Last updated 6/2/12

 

Curtis Granderson has become one of the league's top sluggers since joining the Yankees, proving he fits perfectly in pinstripes

Last night was a homecoming of sorts for Curtis Granderson, as he returned to Detroit to face his original team, the Tigers, and he certainly made them pay big time, making them regret ever letting him go.

Casey Cosby made his first MLB start last night for Detroit and his nerves were on display. In the second inning, Crosby walked four straight batters and with the bases loaded, Curtis Granderson approached the plate. He salivated as he entered the batters box seeing all those potential runs in front of him. Then with one pitch, he fed his hunger, as he ripped into the ball sending it soaring to deep right field for a grand-slam, home-run that gave the Yankees a healthy lead which they maintained for the win.

In 2010, the speedy center-fielder, Granderson, was traded to the Yankees in a monster three-team deal. It was a great pick up for the organization, as he could provide a wide range of coverage in the outfield, backed by a great glove, a strong base-stealing threat and an even better bat. His offensive production was there when Granderson was in Detroit, but since coming to New York, he’s really broken out at the plate due in part to Yankees batting instructor, Kevin Long. Long has been known to improve the swings of many of the current Yankees and Granderson’s story is no different, he may in fact be Long’s greatest success so far.

Granderson made his MLB debut with the Tigers in 2004 and was started out very slowly on the offensive side and contributed very little in his first two seasons. As his pro career progressed though, he started to find his swing and his offensive numbers steadily increased. Through six seasons with the Tigers, Granderson tallied 112 home runs along with 364 RBIs. However, since joining the Yankees, he’s really seemed to find his swing and a new-found success at the plate with his new club.

His first season in pinstripes, Granderson hit 24 homers, drove in 67 RBIs, and scored 71 runs. But last year, he really exploded on the offensive scene and had his best season in all of those categories. Granderson contributed a career highs, with 41 home runs blasted, an astounding 119 RBIs, and 136 runs scored.

This season, the success continues for Granderson as his off to another quick start and looks as if his on pace to have yet another career year in pinstripes. Through 51 games this season, he’s responsible for 17 big flies, 33 RBIs, and 36 runs, and his home run total is also good for second-best in the league.

Since becoming a Yankee, Granderson already has a total of 82 home runs and 219 RBIs in barely over two seasons and has established himself as one of the MLB’s top offensive threats. Not only has he drastically improved as a slugger, but he’s also become a better batter in general. He’s displayed more patience at the plate which has allowed him to work more walks and strike out less. As a lefty, Yankee Stadium was taylor made for his swing and since coming to New York he’s proven that pinstripes clearly suit him best and he was simply born to be a Bronx Bomber. With plenty of juice still left at the age of 31, Granderson and the rest of Yankee nation look forward to seeing a lot more fireworks sparked off of his powerful swing.

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