Grant Green may not be well known yet to fans around Major League Baseball, but to A’s fans he is all too familiar. Drafted in the 2009 draft out of USC Green was the shortstop of the future. He could hit, play defense, and had some pop. It has been four years since then and the excitement has given way to patience. Stopgaps and injuries have blocked Green’s emergence at the Major League level, but this may finally be his year to shine.
February 18, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Oakland Athletics center fielder Grant Green (35) poses for a picture during photo day at Phoenix Municipal Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Green started out in the A’s organization at shortstop but eventually his lack of defense led him to being moved to center field in 2011 while still splitting time at short. In 2012 he played both center and left field as his primary spots at the beginning until the organization made the decision to move him over to third base where the minor leagues lacked depth. This lack of depth was caused by the blooming of Josh Donaldson into the full time third basemen with the A’s. After a few games there the organization again decided to move Green this time to second base. He would alternate between third and second for the rest of the season.
This spring Green will be primarily considered a second baseman. He will finally get a shot at a roster spot with the big club. With Jemile Weeks struggles last season coupled with Scott Sizemore coming back from injury, this may be Green’s best shot to grab a roster spot. His offense has been proven at all levels of the minors never sputtering to this point. It will be a hard battle with the two other players eager to prove they are back and ready to produce again.
Green’s offense could actually be a nice welcome to the A’s if he is to win the second base job though. He constantly hits for a high average and has some power to go with it. None of the A’s second baseman last season including; Weeks, Adam Rosales, Eric Sogard, Brandon Inge, and Cliff Pennington (among others) can produce the way that Green can. You either get a decent average or decent pop from these players but only Green can produce both at a high level. His defense though average at shortstop due to a lack of range will only improve at second base.
One other thing Green brings to the table is a grasp of multiple positions. He is a younger Jed Lowrie in that aspect. Other than first base, right field, catcher, and pitcher Green has played every position at some point or another in his minor league career. This can only help his chances of finally gaining a spot on the A’s roster.
A’s fans want Grant Green to produce. The organization wants Grant Green to produce. This spring in Arizona we may finally see the player everyone has been hoping to see. And maybe, just maybe, we’ll see some extra Green on the roster come April 1 at the Coliseum.