Curtis Granderson is no stranger to the World Series stage and the Toronto Blue Jays are hoping his resume and strong leadership abilities will boost a club hoping to return to the playoffs in 2018.
Joining a new team, Granderson doesn’t plan on imposing himself on the current make-up of the clubhouse, and will continue the feeling-out process as spring training rolls along. However, the outfielder makes it clear he won’t shy away from stepping up if and when an opportunity arises.
“You come in and you’re trying to learn people and people are also trying to learn me,” Granderson said Tuesday on Sportsnet 590 The FAN’s Starting Lineup. “They’ve only been around me for a couple days just trying to get that insight on me and I’m also trying to figure that out about them. As situations come, whether it be over the spring or during the season, that’s when the potential to insert myself is going to happen. There’s no scheduled date or time.
“If there’s something that needs to be said, obviously then I’ll try my best to step up in those moments, but I’ll also be receptive if someone needs to say something to me. I think that’s the combination of being a good leader, you have to be able to give it and take it at the same time.
Those leadership qualities are a big reason why the Blue Jays were eager to add Granderson in free agency, and the 36-year-old said Toronto was in contact almost immediately after the 2017 World Series concluded.
“Toronto was one of the first teams to reach out to me,” Granderson said. “Sure enough those conversations continued and got a little more detailed, the opportunities were presented to me and communicated to me well and everything just seemed to line up the way I wanted it to be.
“Getting a chance to come over here with some familiar faces like Russell Martin, like Steve Pearce, like J.A. Happ was a big reason why I was lured over here, plus they’ve had success, and I’ve also liked the city of Toronto.”
Granderson also touches on his experience of making the World Series so early in his career, his relationship with Alex Rodriguez and much more. Listen to the full interview in the audio player below.