Michael Baron, Contributor
“A lot of the people I’ve met in New York have always said, ‘True New Yorkers are Mets fans,’” Curtis Granderson said during his press conference on Tuesday. “I’m excited to get a chance to see them all out there.”
Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman responded kindly to Granderson’s remark, saying Granderson is a good man and recognized why he would say that.
“The great thing about our city is there is room for both,” Cashman said. “The Mets got a good player, they really did. We appreciate the time we had with him and he will help the Mets. Good man, too. Real good man.”
Granderson’s comment was beyond fantastic, and it got me excited. His face lit up when he said that, as if he knew exactly what he was doing when he made the statement. Granderson is a smart, thoughtful and analytical person, and it was clear to me this was a calculated — albeit harmless — move in an attempt to stir the pot and warm the hearts of our fan base with an opening jab to his former team.
In listening to Cashman’s response afterwards, it doesn’t seem like it bothered him either, which was great. To Cashman, Granderson and both clubs, it’s about wins and losses on the field, and not into a microphone.
Yankees 1B Mark Teixeira made similar remarks regarding Granderson, noting the Mets got a steal on Granderson and believed if he had a healthy 2013, Granderson would have signed a $100 million contract this winter.
Maybe. After all, this is a crazy free agent market and prices are as high as they’ve ever been, even for aging players seeking multi-year deals.
Granderson said the Mets were the only team to offer him a fourth year, but showed their intent in signing him from the beginning of the offseason.
“You want to go where you’re needed and wanted, and the Mets definitely wanted me,” Granderson said during his press conference.
Money and security talk. Sure, players do have a need to feel wanted, as do most people seeking jobs in any industry, but in the end, the almighty dollar reigns supreme.
No matter what, the Mets made a good, reasonable deal for a good player, did what they had to do to secure him, and showed the game they were back in business. Granderson has his flaws, and it’s fair to wonder what he will be in the third and fourth year of the deal, but this is the cost of doing business in baseball — the Mets took an important early step towards restoring their credibility in the game, with the fans and in the media.