Curtis Granderson has endured a tough 2017 season. Everyday has brought new challenges and those new challenges have consistently generated new columns about why the outfielder deserves to be benched by the New York Mets. For just one fleeting moment, the buzz around his playing future dimmed to white noise and the sounds of jubilant and cheering fans filled Citi Field as New York celebrated a milestone and a tie-breaking home run.

Granderson reaches a milestone

In the bottom of the eighth inning during Wednesday night's rubber game against the Chicago Cubs, Granderson came to the plate with the weight of a win on his shoulders.

He had already scored twice in the game, including a Juan Lagares triple in the sixth inning to tie the game up at 4-4, a score that held up until the longtime veteran's next at-bat. Success had been hard to come by recently, but he still had the power to pull a ball straight over the right field wall when the opportunity arose.

That's exactly what he did. Granderson took the fifth pitch he saw from Cubs reliever Carl Edwards Jr. and sent it deep into the New York night. He rounded the bases with the same speedy jog he had utilized 299 times before, letting a smile finally betray his emotions after he entered the dugout. Some Mets fans knew it was home run No. 300 while others just saw the team pull into the lead, but the desire was the same: a curtain call.

Granderson happily obliged in his role as hero for the night.

Granderson home run a winner

The home run was a milestone for Granderson, but it also opened the floodgates for the Mets.

On a night where Anthony Rizzo homered to lead off for the second straight game, New York would have the final laugh. Granderson kicked off a stretch where seven of eight Mets batters would reach base in one way or another, including a three-run shot from first baseman Lucas Duda. By the end of the inning, the Mets led 9-4, which stood as the game's final score.

Thursday kicks off another big series for the resurgent Mets as they host the NL East-leading Washington Nationals. Granderson will surely go 0-for-5 with two strikeouts and a double play in one of the series' four games, sparking questions of whether or not he deserves to play every day once again. For one night, those doubts were erased. For one night, Granderson was a hero again, reminding fans of why he was signed to a four-year pact after the 2013 season in the first place.