New York Yankees: Why Curtis Granderson Has Turned It Around for the Yankees

Arad MarkowitzContributor IIIJune 1, 2011

ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 16:  Curtis Granderson #14 of the New York Yankees bats against the Texas Rangers in Game Two of the ALCS during the 2010 MLB Playoffs at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on October 16, 2010 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

In the beginning of 2010, Curtis Granderson was having a terrible year.

Then he went to Yankees hitting coach Kevin Long, and after taking two games off to adjust his swing, Granderson went on a tear.

Granderson had his best month of the year in September of 2010, putting up nine home runs, his most RBI of any month and the best OBP of any month.

He also had a great .357 BA in the 2010 playoffs, with a .514 OBP and also popped a home run. 

It seemed like Granderson finally had turned it around and was in line for a huge 2011. But then he strained his oblique, and no one knew if he could play on opening day.

Sure enough, he did.

On opening day, 2011, Granderson hit a home run, quieting complaints about his oblique. And now, Granderson is having an amazing year thus far.

He has been arguably the second best player in the American League thus far, behind the non-human Jose Bautista.

Throughout his career, Granderson has always been terrible against lefty pitchers. In fact, he has a career .223 BA against lefties in his career, versus a .283 BA versus righties. But 2011 has been different for Granderson. He has the most home runs versus lefties on the year (nine), with the second most being six, by Chris Ianetta.

In comparison, Granderson had just six homers off of lefties COMBINED in 2009 and 2010. In 2011, however, Granderson has been doing better against lefties than against righties. He is hitting .323 against lefties on the year, and only .268 versus righties.

In March/April of 2011, he hit seven home runs and batted .271 with fifteen RBI and also slugged .612 which led to an OPS of .934. In May he was even better. Granderson batted .294, popped 10 home runs, stole six bases, had 26 RBI, an OBP of .378 and slugged .639, which led to an OPS of 1.016.

He is currently second in the majors with 17 blasts, third in the American League in RBI and fourth in OPS+.

Curtis has already surpassed his 2010 total WAR in 2011, and the season is just a third complete. 

Granderson is on pace to have his best season and the trade that many thought wrong for the Yankees is turning out to be terrific, as a certain center fielder struggles out in Detroit.

It's amazing how he has really turned it around this year.