When the Yankees pulled the trigger on three-team trade that brought Curtis Granderson to patrol centerfield, the big question was whether Granderson could hit lefties. The concerns were legitimate as in 2009, in his last season with the Tigers, despite being a 30-homer hitter, against lefties he hit just .183 with two homers and nine RBI.
Granderson's struggles continued through the first half of 2010 with the Yanks:
You can see that there were very few hot spots as Granderson struggled against lefties hitting .207 and slugging .287.
But to his credit, in August, as he was benched, he started working with Kevin Long, the increasingly respected hitting coach for the Yanks.
Take a look at the difference in the first half of this season:
By taking that step closer to the plate, closing his stance and keeping both hands on the bat through his swing, Granderson is having an All-Star season. Just against lefties he is hitting .273, and slugging .648, with nine homers. Granderson still takes constant batting practice against and if he is looking for a thank you present for Long, perhaps a framed picture of this heat map would be perfect.