Derek Jeter said he wasn’t surprised. He wasn’t surprised to see Curtis Granderson finally get a good read on the ball in the first inning, wasn’t surprised to see him start to go back on it, and wasn’t surprised to see Granderson make a leaping catch that might very well have been the turning point of the entire game.
“I think he’s made that catch against me here when he played for Detroit,” Jeter said. “He’s very familiar with this ballpark, but that was a very, very important part of the game. If that gets over his head, three runs score. It was definitely a very, very important part of the game.”
Before last night’s game became a blowout, two Granderson catches changed everything. The leaping catch in the first inning might have saved an inside-the-park grand slam. The diving catch in the sixth took away what might have been an RBI double that would have brought the tying run to the plate with a runner in scoring position.
Low line drive to center field by Don Kelly
“Right away I thought he hit it right to me,” Granderson said. “I took a step in and froze. It started to get some air. At least for my perspective, it kind of went up. I was like, ‘Oh man.’ I was able to go ahead and not be committed one way or the other. I ended up having to leave my feet, which I didn’t want to. I ended up reeling it in finally at the end. Don Kelly came up to me later in the game and he goes, ‘How did you do it?’ I said, ‘You hit it that hard. If you didn’t hit it that hard, it would have fell in and been a base hit.’”
Hard-hit ball to the left-center gap by Jhonny Peralta
“The (catch) with Peralta started just because of positioning,” Granderson said. “I flet he was a guy that was going to hit the ball to the right-center gap, so that’s where I was shading him. Sure enough, he ended up hitting the ball to the left-center cap, so I ended up having to go a lot further for it. Looked a Brett Gardner, he wasn’t there yet, so I decided to a lay out for it, ended up holding onto the ball. The reason I was slow getting up, I ended up knocking the wind out of myself, and I think I hit my head a little bit because I had a little headache afterwards.”
Here’s Granderson talking about his big night with the glove.
Associated Press photo