Forbidden Love is a Cubs DNA series where our staff waxes poetic about a player on a team other than the Cubs. Maybe even one you think they should hate. In this installment, Tina tells us of her admiration for newly retired MLB outfielder Curtis Granderson.
I remember watching the Cubs-Mets NLCS series in 2015 and how every player on that team seemed to annoy me to no end, especially Daniel F*cking Murphy. Then when Grandy stole Cogs' homer, I was beside myself... I can't hate Grandy!
Curtis Granderson, as many know, is from the Chicago area. He had a great 16 year career in baseball, playing for seven teams - Detroit Tigers, NY Yankees, NY Mets, LA Dodgers, Toronto Blue Jays, Milwaukee Brewers and Miami Marlins. I won't lie, I was hoping the Cubs would have tried to sign him in 2019 to a minor league deal, but, alas, it didn't happen.
His career stats are pretty average (.249/.337/.465/.803), his best years being with the Yankees in 2011 and 2012 when he hit 84 HRs those two seasons and led the league with 119 RBIs and 136 runs in 2011. Dude was a stud!
But I think what I love about him most is his outstanding leadership and charitable impact to his hometown and beyond. One of Grandy's largest gifts was to his alma mater, the University of Illinois at Chicago, to upgrade their baseball field. Completed in 2014, it already had a baseball field, the Les Miller Field, but they were able to add more seats, concessions and upgrades to a park with what is considered the prettiest batter's eye in college baseball.
Besides being the home of the UIC Flames, the stadium also hosts many area little league teams games, clinics and baseball camps.
His charity, the GrandKids Foundation was founded in 2007 to help kids, especially those from the inner cities, focuses on nutrition, fitness and education initiatives. And he continues to stay active with his charity during this trying time to help communities in need.
Granderson was named MLB’s 2016 Roberto Clemente Award winner and was also named the Marvin Miller Man of the Year four times by the MLB Players Association, the last time in 2019. He is truly one of baseball's best ambassadors. Can't wait to see him more in the broadcast booth too!