The Mesa Solar Sox are winless through the first five games of this AFL season but there are still some standout players. As I mentioned in my last update, Josh Vitters and Robbie Grossman are two players to watch – and this time I’m sure of it. Vitters has eight runs batted in, tying him for first with Surprise Saguaros third baseman Mike Olt, a Rangers prospect, and Salt River Rafters outfielder Tim Wheeler, a Rockies farmhand. His two home runs tie him for third place in the league with several other players, Robbie Grossman being one of them.
Through five games Grossman is hitting .318 with two home runs and five batted in. He has struck out four times and walked twice in twenty-four plate appearances so the kid has some patience. The Pirates, as it looks right now, have a pretty good outfield in Jose Tabata, Andrew McCutchen, and Garrett Jones. They also have a pretty deep bench with guys like Ryan Ludwick and Matt Diaz. Grossman is impressive so far through the Arizona Fall League but he has spent two years at high-A Bradenton in the Pirates organization. At twenty-two years old look for him to make some noise in a couple of years.
Finally, this wouldn’t be an AFL update if I didn’t mention that White Sox outfield prospect Brandon Short has three hits in seventeen at-bats, good for a .176 batting average. I won’t let myself live down this failed prediction.