At long last, Curtis Granderson will be returning to the New York Yankees on Friday night as they begin a weekend series against the San Diego Padres.
Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News reports that the left fielder will be back in the lineup, and details how much the offensive power will be needed.
The Yankees are 5-7 since the All-Star break, scoring an average of 3.2 runs per game. Their anemic .228/.275/.306 slash line tells much of the story, as does their puny home run total (91).
The Bombers have hit only three homers since the break, getting long balls from Derek Jeter and Alfonso Soriano on Sunday and one from Lyle Overbay on Tuesday.
The Yankees have dealt with plenty of season-long distractions, obviously including the never-ending Alex Rodriguez saga, but Joe Girardi believes that Granderson could be the start of the team putting things back together.
“We’re starting to get a little bit healthier,” Joe Girardi [told the NY Daily News]. “You get Grandy back. The one thing that he needs is to take a page out of Jeet’s book, don’t try to do too much. Just be yourself. That will be good enough.”
It gets a little easier with the Padres up followed by the Chicago White Sox. Both teams are well below .500 to give the Yankees a chance to bounce back in the AL East.