Another day, another potential center field possibility that will more than likely never come to fruition.
Today, Yankees center fielder Curtis Granderson is the target du jour.
NYY have been open to talks about Curtis Granderson. If they move his $15m salary, it would provide more flexibility to do other things.
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) December 4, 2012
In 684 plate appearances last year, Granderson hit .232/.319/.492 for an OPS of .811, with 43 HRs and 106 RBIs.
However, the most important number regarding Granderson, at least as far as the Yankees are concerned, is the $15 million he is owed on the final year of his contract.
New York would like to use that $15 million on other needs, and appears ready to trade their star center fielder.
And of course, if there is a player who can put a glove on their hand and play at least a passable center field in Major League Baseball, chances are the Phillies are interested.
There are some negatives to Granderson, for sure. His righty-lefty splits have never been very good (.699 lifetime OPS vs. lefties/.885 lifetime OPS vs. righties), and he would join an already left-handed heavy lineup. He strikes out a lot (195 times), plays mediocre defense and hit for a low average last season.
Of course, just because he’s left-handed doesn’t mean he’s a bad fit. And the Phillies, as a team, don’t strike out all that often, so adding a high strikeout guy wouldn’t be crippling. And a low batting average is something to consider, but if he’s producing runs and getting on base a little bit, a low batting average isn’t the end of the world.
Perhaps the biggest positive to acquiring Granderson is that he is on the last year of his contract. The Phillies would not have to commit multiple years to a 32 year-old player, unlike a multi-year deal for Hamilton, Victorino or Bourn. Granderson is also one year removed from a year in which he posted an OPS of .916 and finished fourth in the AL MVP vote.
Of course, that $15 million owed to Granderson next year would push the Phillies ever-closer to the luxury tax. And there is the issue of just what prospects the Yankees would like in return for Granderson.
However, if this is mostly a salary dump (as it sounds like), the Phils might not have to give up very much. Either way, Curtis Granderson is yet another name to add to the heap of potential center field targets for the Phils.
Yet another Plan B.