#Braves shortstop Vaughn Grissom enters the Top 100 Prospects list with Oneil Cruz graduating.
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) July 31, 2022
If you’ve been keeping up with Grissom, you’ll know this is well deserved. I recently wrote about how he could have a Michael Harris-esque ascent into the majors. I also talked about how well he has been hitting in AA:
As you can see, Grissom has had a big month of July — slashing .448/.579/.759/1.338 with the Rome Braves before getting the call to Mississippi. Where he hasn’t missed a beat, posting a .380/.426/.580/1.006 slash line. He has two doubles, a triple, and two home runs over his first twelve games of AA ball.
In 2019, the main attraction at Hagerty High School in Florida was Riley Greene, who went No. 5 overall that June to the Tigers. Grissom was that school’s shortstop, and while he wasn’t as highly regarded, the Braves liked him enough to go over the $125K limit in the 11th round and sign him for $347,500. He’s rewarded their investment by hitting pretty much everywhere as a pro — from his summer debut in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League to the alternate site, where he was one of the youngest players, to a full-season debut in 2021 in which he raked in A ball and earned a late promotion to High-A.
Grissom routinely displays outstanding bat-to-ball skills with a very good approach. He has a strong feel for the barrel from the right side of the plate, manages his at-bats well, draws walks and rarely strikes out. He’s short to the ball with relatively simple hitting mechanics and has solid bat speed. The Braves hope he’ll continue to fill out his 6-foot-3 frame and grow into more power as he matures.
As solid as Grissom has been at the plate, it’s been less clear where he might belong long-term defensively. He’s still seen more time at shortstop than any other position, but he’s also played a fair amount at third as well as a little at second. He has the arm to stay on the left side of the infield, where he’s more comfortable and while he doesn’t always have silky-smooth actions, he’s a solid defender. If he can’t play short, he might need to raise his power profile a bit to be a fit at the hot corner as a regular.
Anyone who has watched Grissom play knows he won’t be this low for long. I wouldn’t be shocked to see him crack the Top 50 going into 2023.
Photographer: Larry Radloff/Icon Sportswire