Granderson homers in second rehab game at Triple-A
Injured Yankee goes 1-for-5 at plate, but is not tested in outfield
Special to MLB.com
MOOSIC, Pa. -- Curtis Granderson took a big step toward the Bronx on Friday as he homered in the eighth inning of his second rehab game with Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Granderson went 1-for-5, but fans at PNC Field will remember his final swing of the night.
Granderson started the game in left field and batted second for the RailRiders.
"I was able to get a good swing on it and finally hit the ball out of the infield for the first time," Granderson said of his homer, which broke a tied game and lifted the RailRiders to a 5-3 win. "I knew it was hit decent, but I didn't think it was going out."
He began his second rehab game with a hard grounder to second, but it resulted in a double play. He followed that up with a routine grounder to second in his second at-bat. He struck out in the fourth, and while Granderson hit a ball hard up the middle in the sixth, pitcher Luis Ayala knocked it down and threw him out at first.
Asked if he was frustrated by his at-bats prior to his home run, Granderson was at ease.
"Today I just hit the 30-at-bat mark for 2013, so I'm definitely not frustrated," Granderson said. "You've got to understand that you're going to run through some timing issues. Even right now, I'm still not at 100 percent in terms of my at-bats. I'm just trying to get timing down, stay aggressive, and get ready to hit."
Granderson had a quiet day in left field.
"I didn't have too much, I had a ball go off the wall, and then just two fly balls -- nothing too crazy," Granderson said. "I haven't had to make a throw from either side, so I'm waiting for that to come."
Rain in northeast Pennsylvania moved batting practice indoors for Granderson and the RailRiders.
"I just want to hit outside. When you hit in the cage, you don't get a chance to see what the ball is doing, so it kind of messes with you a little bit," Granderson said.
Granderson's rehab assignment is essentially an abbreviated Spring Training for him -- a tough adjustment for a player that's used to the slow pace of preparation throughout February and March.
"To go a full nine innings and play the same amount of innings in just over a week that you would in Spring Training is different," Granderson said. "The good thing is I felt good today physically. Regardless of what the at-bats were, I felt good, and that's a good sign. I feel, right now, ready to go for nine tomorrow."