This is how he found out that today’s doubleheader had been postponed.
“I remember my first at-bat, the initial conversation with (Matt) Wieters and the home plate ump,” Granderson said. “They said, ‘What’s going on?’ I said, ‘I have no clue. Maybe we’ll find out as we go on.’ And sure enough it gets announced. I’m on the on-deck circle looking (at the information on the scoreboard) going, ‘I didn’t even know about that stuff that’s up there.’ All the rescheduling stuff I didn’t know. Now, the option of doing two on Sunday (was) a possibility just because of the way it’s all working out, and we knew there was a 98 percent chance we weren’t going to play (Saturday). But even before we took the field, it still hadn’t been confirmed that we weren’t playing.”
Basically, the best-case scenario seems to be playing four of five games this series (at least, that’s what’s in place now). The Yankees believe there are — or at least, were — alternatives.
1. Doubleheader yesterday — Granderson said it was earlier this week that the Yankees submitted the idea of preemptively playing a doubleheader on Friday. The Orioles refused. This is the point that seems to have the Yankees most upset.
2. Early game today — This was a topic discussed last night, that the Yankees and Orioles should have at least left open the option of playing one game today. Joe Girardi even mentioned the idea of pushing up the first pitch a few hours. Hard for ticket holders to change their plans last second would be the obvious argument against.
3. Doubleheader in New York — The Orioles are coming to the Bronx for a three-game series in September, so why not just play two games one of those days, and give the second-game gate to the Orioles? Granderson said it was actually the commissioner’s office that squashed this idea. “There could be concerns about having an extra home game in comparison to everybody else in the league as a home-field advantage,” Granderson said. “I’m not sure what the other reasons would be, but that definitely was one of them.”
4. Back-to-back doubleheaders Sunday and Monday — Granderson said the Yankees were actually presented with this as an alternative to playing on September 8, but four games in two days before September call-ups? The Yankees actually said no to this one. “If either team happens to deplete the pitching staff, if a starter happens to not go late, teams are going to be scrambling,” Granderson said. “Just from getting somebody up, looking at the weather, depending on where guys potential 40-man rosters happen to be, it might be difficult to get guys here in time for the next scheduled game to use them. It wouldn’t benefit either one of us to try to go ahead and do it.”
5. Consider skipping the game completely — Granderson included this option as a sort of last resort. There’s a built-in off day before the playoffs, and the Yankees and Orioles could play this game on that day only if necessary. “Seeing if it’s left and we need to actually play that at the end of the season would be the next and final option,” Granderson said.
Right now, it’s hard to say how much influence the Yankees will have on this decision. It could be that the Orioles will be able to get their way regardless.
“It’s tough because of the way the bargaining agreement is (written) and the fact that they are rescheduled rain out games and Baltimore’s home park,” Granderson said. “It’s going to be difficult. At the same time, you do need both parties. You need their team and our team, so we’re going to try to fight it as much as we can.”
Here’s Granderson after last night’s game.
Associated Press photos