A lot of people have been giving initial reactions lately to the Granderson trade, labeling Detroit the winner thus far. Granderson, after all, is hurt and was not hitting particularly well. Ajax leads the league in batting average, or at least he did the other day, I haven't bothered to check. As a result, the Yankees got shafted right? Wrong.
Granderson didn't replace Ajax in our outfield, he replaced Damon. Had the Yankees not made the move for Granderson, they probably would have resigned Damon and Ajax would currently have the best batting average in AAA. The Yanks, as of last winter, did not consider Ajax major league ready. They may have been wrong (still too early to tell), but either way, Ajax was not going to be patrolling any part of the outfield at Yankee Stadium.
Now you may say that Damon is hitting better than Granderson, which is true. In fact Damon's grandmother is probably hitting better than Granderson, but that's not the issue in this trade.
We've seen this season that the Yankee offense is formidable even when guys like A-Rod and Teix don't hit, or when guys like A-Rod and Posada have to miss time because their apple sauce was too hard. So the fact that Granderson isn't hitting that well doesn't matter (as long as he continues to hit home runs off Papelbon). What matters is that in the last week we've lost A-Rod, Posada, Mo, and Pettitte to minor injuries. Why? Because they're old. Hell, I think Mo qualifies for discounts at IHOP he's so old, but he's a robot so it doesn't matter. That's why the Granderson deal was, and still is, a win for the Yankees. Damon can hit, we know that. But can Damon stay any healthier than the rest of our oldies? We can hardly guarantee that.
Sure, Granderson is currently hurt. But he pulled a muscle in the first month of the season. How many early season hamstring injuries have we seen in the last few years? A lot. This is the best time to get those injuries out of the way. If he pulls it in September, we have a problem. In April, who cares? He's hardly the linchpin of our offense anyway. What's important is we have a player who won't need a day off every week to rest his eyes. We needed Granderson because, despite how they play, many of our players are nonetheless old. We didn't need another old man at the club(house).