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Collins likes Grandish leadoff look

6/16/2014

NEW YORK -- Terry Collins is not promising Curtis Granderson returns to the leadoff spot Monday in St. Louis. But the manager will be considering it after Granderson went 2-for-3 with a home run and two walks in his first game batting leadoff as a Met, during a 3-1 win Sunday against the Padres.

Eric Young Jr. is slated to return for the Cardinals series, giving Collins another option in Juan Lagares’ absence, but Granderson’s production spoke for itself.

Curtis Granderson

Curtis Granderson

#3 RF
New York Mets

2014 STATS

  • GM66
  • HR9

  • RBI31

  • R31

  • OBP.346

  • AVG.229

It was Granderson’s 560th career start in the leadoff spot, although most of that experience came with the Detroit Tigers from 2006 through ’09.

Granderson’s leadoff homer was the first by a Met since Mike Baxter against the Phillies' Kyle Kendrick on Aug. 30, 2012.

“You’ve got to understand, this isn’t just draw-them-out-of-a-hat,” Collins said. “There’s some real thought process. And that’s not just base on balls and on-base [percentage]. You look at Grandy today, up five times, four times he got on base. We tried to look back at his history when he led off, that’s what he did. He drew base on balls. And he hit doubles and triples and homers. I know he can do it.

“Tomorrow we’ll see what it’s going to look like, but right now I feel like I need to get him up there somehow, and leave him at the top of the lineup somewhere.”

Granderson had been out of the starting lineup the previous three games with a left calf injury. He nonetheless was able to patrol center field in his return.

"I actually talked to him yesterday on the bench if he had any problems leading off," Collins said. "And he said, 'No, I’ve done it a lot.' If I leave him in the fourth spot and you take a young guy and put him at the top where he’s not comfortable, they kind of get out of their game a little bit."