Curtis Granderson was fine, he just needed a minute. He’d just sprinted around the bases, slid head-first for an inside-the-park home run, and now he was retreating into a sea of high fives in the dugout.
That’s when he realized he was winded.
“It was good until everyone wanted to talk,” Granderson said. ” As we’re coming in, everyone was asking about it, and I couldn’t really talk too much.”
Here’s the play-by-play of the home run, in Granderson’s words:
“I thought the way they were going after it, OK, it’s going to hit the wall, let’s go ahead and make sure we get to third. My normal read is, if they don’t have it by the time I get to second, I’m advancing to third base, and sure enough, that’s what I did.
“… The only time I realized it was when the third baseman wasn’t covering third once I had already rounded second base. I saw our third-base coach, Rob Thomson, then beginning to wave, and I could hear our dugout saying keep going. At that point I wasn’t sure I was going to make it because I could see the catcher getting himself ready to make a play, and luckily the throw was up the line and gave me the back side of the plate to slide in safely.”
As you might expect, Joe Girardi said the whole thing started with Granderson going hard out of the box.
“That’s where it starts,” Girardi said. “Curtis is a guy that hits a lot of triples, and to get that, you have to run hard. That’s the way Curtis plays. It’s an outstanding job. In a lot of ballparks, that’s a homer the normal way and you don’t have to run so hard. This is a big ballpark, it hit off the wall high and took a long bounce. Curtis was hustling the whole way.”
Associated Press photo