People like to get on Granderson for his low batting average and high strikeout rate, but he’s a 40 home run guy who is going to post at least a .800 OPS each year. He was also expected to be a big part of a Yankees lineup that lost a lot of power this offseason. He’s going to miss 10 weeks which puts him at a May 4 return, but with rehab it will be more like May 15 or later.
That’s about 40 games without Granderson. And the Yankees don’t exactly have a lot of options to replace him with either. Matt Diaz and Juan Rivera, who both hit righties much better than lefties, are the two main options. Thomas Neal is an option as well. Ronnier Mustelier, Zoilo Almonte, and Melky Mesa could certainly be considered in the mix as well.
Brian Cashman is not the type to panic so don’t expect a reactionary trade. He will, no doubt, check the market and will probably visit the idea of trading for Alfonso Soriano, but don’t think this will lead to a big move. Granderson will be back, Brett Gardner isn’t going anywhere, and neither is Ichiro Suzuki (who signed a two-year deal by the way).
One thing this does is it might kill any possibility of having Granderson switch to left field. Gardner will likely fill in for him in center when he’s gone, but Joe Girardi is not going to throw Granderson in left field with no practice out there. Perhaps, they could give him some reps in left while he rehabs, but he’ll likely DH early on during rehab to limit the chances of a setback. It probably depends on how quickly they need him back.