We’ve heard a lot about Curtis Granderson the Baseball player. But when it comes to Curtis Granderson the person, we’ve only heard vague references about what a ‘good guy’ everyone says he is. Scoop Jackson of ESPN recently did an interview with Curtis that sheds some light on what makes him tick, things that Yankee fans should take note of. Here’s some highlights:
Jackson: Chance to win a ring?
Granderson: You know, people have said that to me — “At least you have a chance to win a ring.” And I always say, “Every team has a chance to win a ring.” I played in a World Series while I was in Detroit, so you never know. The Yankees hadn’t been in the World Series since 2001; now, the fact that they are defending champions I’m sure is going to make them the odds-on favorites. But it’s 0-0 as far as I’m concerned.
About his image and the New York media:
Jackson: Now that you are one of [the Yankees], are you worried about the media in New York trying to get any dirt on you?
Granderson: [He almost finishes the question as it is being asked.] They’re going to look for something? Too-good-to-be-true kind of deal? From a playing aspect, that doesn’t bother me. I’ve handled 0-20 slumps. I’ve had to answer why I’m struggling against left-handed pitchers. I probably had my worst moment on the biggest stage when I slipped and fell in the World Series, so with all that stuff, I’ll be fine. But it’s the little things … you know, whatever it is … I’m not married, I don’t have any kids, I’m friendly, I’m outgoing and, depending what’s going on, I know [my personal actions] can be taken advantage of. I’ve always felt that I’m not that big [in stature]. Yeah, I play professional baseball, but it’s a job, just like someone else has. But I get that this is New York …
Jackson: … and you are the new kid, media fresh meat, and they are going to probably look for anything and at times make things out to be what they really aren’t.
Granderson: Yeah, that’s going to be interesting. Because I don’t want to have to change the things that I do. Going out to eat, hanging with my friends, parents coming to town, etc. That’s my life, that’s what I do, and those are the most important things in my life besides baseball and taking care of my body. I’m going to be with them, I’m going to hang out with them, eat with them, shop with them, whatever it is, that’s stuff I don’t want to have to change. But at the same time, I really don’t know if anyone is ready until they go into that situation and what could happen could actually change you.
In reading his responses to each question, I come away with a consistent impression. He’s a very grounded individual. The type of person who won’t be overly impressed by the bright lights of the big city. He also comes across very much as advertised, a really good guy who should blend in seamlessly to the fabric of the team. In the WFAN Breakfast with Brian Cashman I attended with Joe P of River Ave, Brian made it clear when he signed CC Sabathia that he wanted to change the clubhouse. Moving away from the malcontents of Kevin Brown, Randy Johnson and Gary Sheffield and creating a new core, since the old guard Yankees carried so much respect in the clubhouse it made it difficult for new players to blend in. Curtis Granderson is clearly yet another step in that direction.