Curtis Granderson started his day at Yankee Stadium Wednesday by taping a congratulatory message to former Tigers teammate Miguel Cabrera for his Triple Crown feat.
Little did Granderson know that he nearly ended the night by adding an asterisk Cabrera's place in baseball history, if not for the fact that the Yankees center fielder is a nice guy.
Granderson had launched a pair of homers to raise his career-high total to 43, and without knowing he had pulled to within a single dinger of Cabrera's league-high total, he relinquished his final at-bat in the seventh inning.
Meanwhile, Cabrera was completing his season for the ages, with 44 homers, 139 RBI and a .330 batting average.
"I wanted to get Melky (Mesa) in there to hit again," Granderson explained, referring to the rookie who had had just one at-bat.
"I didn't think about it until CC (Sabathia) saw me sitting down. He said, 'Man, you could have had one more up there.' I was looking at the innings and where we were, and I could have had another at-bat."
It was his idea, Granderson repeated. Manager Joe Girardi merely asked him whether he wanted to take one last swing. And he said he replied, "No, can Melky get it?"
Perhaps he didn't want to ruin his video message, someone suggested.
"I was just asking all those questions if I knew," Granderson replied. "What would have happened, how would it have been perceived, whether it would have been tied. … It would have been a confusing moment for me. But again, congrats to him. An amazing hitter. An amazing teammate. And a lot of fun to watch."
Curtis Granderson could have tied former teammate Miguel Cabrera in home run race
Newark Star-Ledger | Oct 4