Grossman recovering nicely

Pirates outfield prospect Robbie Grossman, who fractured his hamate bone sliding into a base during the Arizona Fall League, has started hitting.

"I'm 100 percent," Grossman reported. "There are no problems and I'm fully healed."

Grossman had surgery to repair the injury in November. The big downside to a hamate injury is that it can sap a player of his power for about a year. Grossman made a big jump in that department this past year, hitting 13 homers and slugging .451 in 490 at-bats at High Single A Bradenton. He was named the Pirates Minor League Player of the Year.

"My grip is back almost to where it was," Grossman said. "I had a great rehab in Houston and it's really more mental coming back from an injury, but I feel fine."

Grossman accomplished a rare feat with the High-A Bradenton Marauders this year. In 134 games, Grossman drew 104 walks and scored 127 runs, becoming the first minor leaguer since Nick Swisher in 2004 to score at least 100 runs and walk 100 times in the same season. Grossman also earned Florida State League post-season All-Star honors this year while becoming the first minor leaguer since Adam Piatt in 1999 of the Oakland Athletics' organization to score at least 127 runs in a season.

"Consistency was big for me last season and I was happy with that," Grossman explained. "I was really pleased with what I did hitting left-handed."

Grossman has been in Bradenton, FL working out since Tuesday, he will likely start the season at Double A Altoona.

I'm looking forward to moving up to Double A," Grossman stated. "It's the same game it is just better at the different levels and I'm looking forward to the challenge."

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