Wahlberg

January 25th, 2010 at 3:08 PM ^

ugh that was painful to watch. I don't hate DD for trading Curtis, I understand that it's a business. But, what was the point of trading C Grand? b/c they supposedly needed to cut payroll? Then why did they start spending again as soon as they traded him?

My criticism of DD is that in the past he seemed to have a specific strategy (power pitching, cheap bats, good defense) and now it seems like the strategy changes 2-3 times a year.

Dark Blue

January 25th, 2010 at 12:45 PM ^

He will be missed, Curtis could of run for mayor of Detroit and won in a landslide. Hope Dombrowski knows what he's doing, because if he doesn't the fans may not be to forgiving of this move.

Dark Blue

January 25th, 2010 at 12:47 PM ^

He will be missed, Curtis could of run for mayor of Detroit and won in a landslide. Hope Dombrowski knows what he's doing, because if he doesn't the fans may not be to forgiving of this move.

EDIT: I thought what I had to say was so important I posted it twice. Deal with it

jokenjin

January 25th, 2010 at 12:59 PM ^

I was able to meet Granderson at the Detroit Auto Show a couple of years ago and he was nothing but class - answering all questions, taking all kinds of picture requests. He will always be my Tiger.

That being said, Dombrowski made a fiscally sound decision for the franchise and he knew it was incredibly unpopular but he's trying to build for the future and he knows sacrifices must be made. I'm sure this was a really hard decision to make but in the end, I think he had to do it.

LongLiveBo

January 25th, 2010 at 1:02 PM ^

It's nice to see that it's not only a business for some of these guys. Curtis was emotionally invested in the Tigers and the city and it was kind of tough to watch him break down.

lunchboxthegoat

January 25th, 2010 at 1:40 PM ^

I know this is unpossible...but It'd be nice to see him come back after his contract is up. I have such complex emotions...the Yankees are a bunch of sky cranes and then there's cGrand...being awesome. How am I supposed to feel about that team now?

bighousechris

January 25th, 2010 at 1:43 PM ^

Granderson is what baseball should be about. He didn't just play ball...the guy invested his time, money and effort in the community and there can't be enough said about that. I hate the Yanks, but I'll always be a fan of Granderson.

OysterMonkey

January 25th, 2010 at 2:13 PM ^

and I hate this. Don't get me wrong, Granderson is a huge upgrade over Melky and I'll be glad they have him next year, but as a baseball fan I hate to see players who mean so much to their teams and communities (and who love playing where they are) traded away for financial reasons. It sucks.

jerseyblue

January 25th, 2010 at 2:30 PM ^

and I'm not a fan of the system either. If we win they say we bought a title. If we don't they say we suck because we're supposed to win it. No matter what the Yanks do the rest of the country hates them. I'd prefer the NFL model of revenue sharing. Also a hard salary cap but also a minimum figure that you can't go under too. There's too many teams that pocket the money instead of putting it into payroll. Finally, welcome aboard Curtis. Glad to have you.

NHWolverine

January 25th, 2010 at 2:54 PM ^

I see your point jerseyblue that there's this sort of backlash against Yankees fans when they succeed or fail, but I think there's a little more to it, for me at least:

- The Yankees seem to be "in the running" whether they are or not, with every major free agent when trade rumors begin circulating. Fans of smaller market clubs see them as the team with the checkbook poised to pick up their favorite franchise player whose jersey they just paid big money to sport around.

- The media makes it seem like money is never an option for the Yankees while discussing it frequently regarding FAs going to other teams (jealousy?).

- The built a dynasty and most sports fans have trouble rooting for dynasty teams and look for the underdog upset. The fans that root for the dynasty teams when they have no real connection to the club (from the city, family from the city or otherwise) tend to enrage fans of other clubs.

- Steinbrenner. I mean he's as polarizing a figure as they get.

There are plenty others. I personally like Jeter, he's a class act, and I think with his clubhouse influence Granderson should continue his work in the NYC community as he has in Metro Detroit. I'll pick him up and root for him on my fantasy team, but as for the rest of the pinstripers I say ... Go Sox baby!

TheLastHarbaugh

January 25th, 2010 at 3:20 PM ^

The reason that I don't like the Yankees is because they "buy players".

It's one thing to sign a veteran free agent to help your team, or to make a trade, but they just seem to swoop in, wildly inflate the values of all of the others players in the market by offering the biggest name available a ridiculous contract. They essentially steal players from their original teams because most teams lack the financial ability to keep said players. I realize there's a lot more to it than that, and yadda yadda yadda, but that's just how I feel.

I tend to be more invested in the homegrown kids, like Grandy, or Verlander. I know that they aren't from Detroit, but they came up through the farm system and were inherently Tigers, or at the very least more so than a free agent or a player we traded for. Granted, some guys you sign as free agents or trade for can become "Tigers" but there's just something cool about having a kid come through your farm system, join the big league club, and then become a really good ball player.

So, in that sense, the Yankees feel like an abomination to baseball because they're not organic like most of the other teams, instead, they're a machine.

Seth

January 26th, 2010 at 10:10 AM ^

I see your point jerseyblue that there's this sort of backlash against Yankees fans when they succeed or fail, but I think there's a little more to it, for me at least:

"Backlash" is a good word for it. Another word would be "payback." I've seen baseball games in every stadium east of the Mississippi and most of those West of it. I don't think you can categorize "worst" or "best" fans. There are, however, differences in fanbases, and the Yankee fanbase's "differences" are quite irking. This is a gross generality, and doesn't apply to all Yankee fans, but they're generally oblivious to non-Yankee baseball. They are incredibly knowledgeable about Mickey Mantle, but then struggle to remember what position Willie Mays played in that same era. The arrogance is palpable in anything Yankee, from the way Billy Crystal remembers all of baseball history occurring in Yankee Stadium to the A-Rod obsession that has dominated baseball media since the best player in baseball arrived in New York to become more fodder for the hardest-to-please fans in the league.

The Yankees seem to be "in the running" whether they are or not, with every major free agent when trade rumors begin circulating. Fans of smaller market clubs see them as the team with the checkbook poised to pick up their favorite franchise player whose jersey they just paid big money to sport around.

Numbers, sir. The organization, with the YES Network and the sales of merchandise, and regular season games that each bring in more sales than most teams make in the playoffs -- they are flush when compared to almost every other team. They are on a different financial plane; percentage-wise, they commit less of their total income to payroll.

This alone isn't what bothers other fans. It's how those players get treated when they get to New York. What happens when Granderson goes on one of his strikeout streaks in New York? What kid in the Bronx is going to pick a .280 line-drive hitter for their favorite player when the roster is already chock full of Hall of Famers. My kid could have been a Granderson fan, like I was a Trammell fan and my dad was a Kaline fan and his dad was a Greenberg fan and his dad was a fan of Wahoo Sam.

The media makes it seem like money is never an option for the Yankees while discussing it frequently regarding FAs going to other teams (jealousy?).

New rule: any argument that starts with "The media" gets an automatic /facepalm. "The Media" is gigantic, and couldn't get together to agree on the color of pinstripes. "The Media" includes bloggers and magazine writers and writers for local rags and the L.A. Times and supermarket tabloids. Jeff Passan makes it seem like money is never an option for the Yankees while discussing it frequently with other teams. I'm sure there are plenty of others. The problem you're referring to is oversimplification by national sports columnists of the "different financial plane" thing described above.

They built a dynasty and most sports fans have trouble rooting for dynasty teams and look for the underdog upset. The fans that root for the dynasty teams when they have no real connection to the club (from the city, family from the city or otherwise) tend to enrage fans of other clubs.

This isn't true. Fans love dynasties. They go nuts for dynasties. They are intrigued by dynasties. This is one of those juvenile "I hate them because I really love them" things. Sports fans have an affinity to great teams. Look how Joe Montana and his 49ers, or the Yankees of the 1920s and 30s, etc., are used to promote their sports today. Do you think Tiger fans in '45 were rooting for Joe DiMaggio's streak? At the time, they hated on it like mad bastards. Today, an entire nursing home in Detroit perks up at mention of the Streak.

Another example: how much Michigan hatred is out there? Yet we still find Wolverine fans all across the country. Guys who grew up in the middle of Ohio come to Michigan and become the next great Michigan men. How much did people really hate USC these last few years? We called them the evil empire, but search your soul and then tell me if you weren't secretly happy to have watched Reggie Bush in your lifetime?

That's not to say we're all secretly Yankee fans. But underdog rooting is not something you see in serious sports fans; it's more common in women than men, actually.

We were discussing this effect at the Wings' game last week against the Kings. I was sitting next to two people from Toronto -- big Leafs fans -- and they remembered every guy from the '90s teams. Now, a Leafs fan is supposed to hate the Red Wings, right? That shit doesn't last; today they remember Sergei Fedorov in his prime, Steve Yzerman, Brendan Shanahan, et al. I mentioned to them that my feelings had changed on Joe Sakic -- I used to hate him, I mean HATE him, but now I can't wait to gush about his stickhandling skills when he enters the Hall of Fame. And both me and the Torontoan also realized that we could name every Avalanche of the late-'90s, but only a few Avs of today.

The fans who really hate the Yankees are those who have teams that can compete on their level. That's where great rivalries come from. Michigan and Ohio State is like that -- Iowa fans care because you're watching two titans. Yankees-Red Sox is like that too -- baseball fans will tell you they're as sick of "Red Sox Nation" as they are of Yankee fans, but almost every baseball fan can name either teams' starting lineups.

In sports fandom, attention is the key, not buying a jersey.

Steinbrenner. I mean he's as polarizing a figure as they get.

And a Buckeye. Nuff said.

There are plenty others. I personally like Jeter, he's a class act, and I think with his clubhouse influence Granderson should continue his work in the NYC community as he has in Metro Detroit. I'll pick him up and root for him on my fantasy team, but as for the rest of the pinstripers I say ... Go Sox baby!

What's classy about Jeter? He's a party boy. He's also a great baseball player.

And what clubhouse influence can Granderson have? Is A-Rod going to change anything about how he approaches the game because of Curtis? Will Jeter? Or Posada? Or Teixeira? Granderson is there to be windowdressing and to play centerfield. He won't affect the clubhouse one iota. It's not his team. It will never be his team. He was a White Sox fan growing up and a Tiger coming up, and -- here's what Yankee fans never understand -- Curtis's heart will always be in the Midwest.

You go to New York for the paycheck. You put your soul aside. And that's why guys never play as well for the Yankees as they did. That's why Yankee fans are always scratching their heads, wondering why A-Rod isn't the absolute best player who ever lived, or why Teixeira seems to play so much tighter, or why Giambi isn't hitting the ball like he used to, or why Godzilla doesn't jump up and down when he hits a homer. When among a collection of stars, when living under the heat lamps, when your fans expect hot streaks to last forever and Championships or disappointment, you lose some of that attenuation to the game that fans really identify with.

Think of how you felt about Mike Hart. Remember that rush when he just wouldn't go down, even if 3 Big Ten linebackers and a safety were already on him? That only happens when the player and the fans are both enchanted by the game. Hart can't be that guy to the Colts. He could only be that guy in college, and be appreciated for it by his fans in college.

Likewise, the chord that Granderson struck could have only been struck in Detroit. He could be a great player in New York -- that pinball machine they play in will help those pulled fly balls turn into homers -- but he won't move a city again like he did when he robbed that home run in Cleveland.

This, in the end, is what fans really hate about the Yankees -- not only do we lose those guys we rooted for, but they lose their luster. It's a waste. Ask Oakland what they felt like when Giambi became a benchwarmer, disappointment, and roider in the New York lights. What did he really lose? The mustache? The chemicals? What Giambi lost when he switched coasts was that swing -- the way he would turn on a baseball like a kid being thrown his first pitch. Giambi was a thing to behold in Oakland. He played the game differently -- the way Granderson played it in Detroit, the way Hart played football in Ann Arbor. A-Rod in Seattle was the same way. He was still young enough that he thought he had to justify his hype, and though his hitting wasn't nearly as precise then, his fielding was out of this world -- he would get to balls and turn them and it was beautiful. He couldn't take that to Texas, or to New York.

When a player is feeling the game, fans identify with that. That thing is lost when a player goes to New York.

I was talking to Juan Berenguer during the extra innings of last year's play-in game between the Twins and Tigers. I asked him which team he most identifies with -- since he won the World Series with both. He didn't think about it -- it was as a Tiger. He said he loved his Twin teammates, has more friends from those years left, and the Twins, at the time, were a better organization to play for. But there's nothing like playing in '84, let alone being the rookie sensation of that team, and the way the fans were in it with him. That's not exactly what he said -- his English still isn't great -- but that was the gist.

The gist of that story: players feed off of fan love. Twins fans -- who are EXCELLENT fans btw -- didn't feel Juan B like Detroit did.

Ben Wallace was a great defender when he went to Chicago. He wasn't the player he had been in Detroit.

Allen Iverson outside of Philadelphia is what? A selfish player whose teams lose.

Jack Johnson out of Ann Arbor is a defenseman out of position.

When you look at it that way, the Yankees are an abomination. They grab a guy that made all of Oakland or Seattle or Detroit happy, and who in turn fed off of that love to play the game better, and plug him in. They take the talent, but they lose the soul, which simply dies.

Maybe Granderson will re-sign in Detroit when three years in New York end with no championships and a season hitting .250 with too many strikeouts brings out the boo birds and screws up his confidence. But the thing that made him a Tiger, that thing is gone. The great is gone. Fans only have room in their hearts for one guy like that per sport at a time, and Jeter is that guy in New York, even if A-Rod is better at playing baseball, and ultimately Granderson is the better man.

Seth

January 25th, 2010 at 2:33 PM ^

Unless I'm crazy, that is Seaholm High School's gymnasium?

I once swore I would never root for a Yankee. But I would root for Granderson.

MaizeAndBlueWahoo

January 25th, 2010 at 3:42 PM ^

Still hate this trade more than any other trade I've ever seen. It's going to be rough on Scherzer and Austin Jackson and the rest; I'm probably going to be unreasonably demanding on them, along with every other Tigers fan.

Looking forward to May when he gets back in town with the Yankees. I know he'll get the standing O he deserves.

BiSB

January 25th, 2010 at 3:51 PM ^

I understand why Dombrowski made the trade, but damn I'm gonna miss watching Curtis Granderson in center field.

He's one of those guys who will contribute positively to his community for the next 50 years. Here's hoping some of those contributions stay in the Detroit area, regardless of the (evil, soul-less, god-foresaken) uniform.

Sven_Da_M

January 25th, 2010 at 5:26 PM ^

That's not something you see from many athletes today.

You can't compare Jeter and Granderson as to stats. But it's almost like Steinbrenner trading Jeter to us.

NFW, it would never happen.

Curtis is top 5 in all professional sports as to class, articulate speech, and representing a city/team.

When you look at the dead money on the Tigers roster (earth to Dontrelle...) it's sad. I understand why it happened, but it's still sad...

GVBlue86

January 25th, 2010 at 5:27 PM ^

What an awesome interview. Makes me sad watching that. We knew how the fans and all of us felt about Curtis, but to see him get emotional like that really validates why we loved him soo much. He is so down to earth and genuine. I am never trading him in my franchise on MLB 09 the Show, lol!

goblueUM2012

January 25th, 2010 at 5:38 PM ^

Granderson was definitely my Tiger his whole career, but after his hand injury he seemed to always strike out in a big situation. He will be missed and will probably do great things for the Yankees, especially with the short porch. From what I've read though, Jackson should be the real deal. You never know with prospects though. I just hope that if the Tigers are going to be bad this year that they start bad from the start and do not break my heart like they did last year.

Drake

January 25th, 2010 at 5:42 PM ^

..but now that they have Curtis Granderson, they are my 2nd favorite team. DD better know what hes doing because if this doesn't work out for the Tigers, the fans will never forget.