It looked bad, but you had to forgive Curtis Granderson missing Andrew Knapp’s fly ball in the fifth inning of the Mets 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Phillies.
“I didn’t see it,” he said. “You can’t catch what you can’t see.”
It led to the Phillies only run, but Granderson also drove in a run and drew a walk during Jacob deGrom’s masterpiece.
And now, he’s carrying the Mets offense, but that wasn’t the case two months ago.
Granderson is a notorious slow starter. So, when he entered May still on the Interstate with a .125 average, questions arose if age has caught up to the 36 year-old outfielder.
But like every other year, his average arose as the season progressed.
“Just as much you guys don’t believe a guy is going to hit .450 all season, continue to have faith a guy isn’t going to hit .100 all season,” he said. “In 600 at-bats, a lot of things can happen over the course of the season.”
In June, Granderson came on batting .315 with eight homers and 15 RBI and had a 1.153 OPS. With Michael Conforto out, the veteran came on and with the Mets winning six of the last seven.
“If he’s not hitting a homer, he’s getting on base,” Mets manager Terry Collins said. “This guy has done a tremendous job this month. He’s really come on. With Michael being out, he’s been a tremendous asset to us, which he has been in the last three years he’s been here. We’re lucky he’s hot right now.”
You can argue Granderson may have been one of the best free agent signings in Mets history. The club has gotten good value over its lie as the outfielder brought veteran leadership to the club.
And unlike Asdrubal Cabrera, who complained about moving to second base, Granderson said nothing when Collins moved him to center field last season.
He just went out and played.
That’s been noticed.
Oh yeah, one other thing that’s big for the Mets. He never gets hurt. The last time Granderson missed significant time was 2013 when he was hit on the wrist twice that season with the Yankees.
Now in his final season of his contract, Granderson continues to produce and play a position designed for younger players, day in and day out.
With that type of play, the unthinkable a few months ago may have to be at least discussed. Should the Mets re-sign Granderson this off-season?
On paper, it you have to say no, since the Mets have two corner outfielders in Yoenis Cespedes and Michael Conforto, but if Granderson continues with the bat, you have to wonder. At 37, he won’t command big money either.
But that’s a discussion for another day, as Collins and the Mets are looking at Granderson leading the way for this resurgence as the Mets try to get back in the race.
And we will look the other way on that missed fly ball in the fifth inning.