In honor of being named #34 on the Latest Leaders list, why not pay tribute to the Buccos own 34, John Grabow.
John has been one of teh longest tenured current Pirates. Which is saying alot considering how fast the organization is known for shipping out their talent. At 30 years old he has been on the major league roster for the past 7 years. Over thos years he has posted winning records in 4 of them.
So far this season Grabow has been an asset out of the bullpen, just has he has throughout his career. He is number one on the depth chart and the go-to guy in tight relief situations. In the 2009 campaign he has a 3-0 record. He has had his share of miscues including giving up a hit in every inning of his 38 innings of work. His era could be better, as it is pretty much average at a mark of 3.49.
Although he has been in the organization since 1997, Grabow is as reserved as they come. He is looked to as a leader in clubhouse, even though he is relatively overlooked when it comes to being a fan favorite. He rarely speaks to the media and is not in the game long enough for the fans to get a grasp of what he is really doing. I guess that is the case with most relievers. Its hard to appreciate the work they really put in. They are only in the game for 1 maybe 2 innings, sometimes only 1 maybe 2 batters. Plus relievers are only noticed when they give up a big hit or home run. It may not be fair, but its the truth. TPeople in the stands expect the reliever to come in get a hold and set up the game for a win. They think its that simple. When the unepected comes the reliever is booed mercily. Its a hrad job and somebody has to do it. Grabow just happens to do it pretty well.
He has done it so well that he is almost always being corted by other teams. Grabow is always brought up in trade talks even though the Pirates may not have him on the block. This season more serious talks are being brought up. So far the Yankees and Twins have expressed interest in the Buc’s go to guy. All bets are on that the trigger will be pulled and Grabow will be gone by the July 31st trade deadline. He will probably be shipped in a package deal along with another Pirate player, probably a current starter. Wherever Grabow lands up whether it be the Big Apple, Land of 10,000 Lakes or even here in the Steel City he will keep his rugged, always prepared approach.
Last night Grabow was a big part in the Pirates 6-3 win over the Astros. He came in for one inning of work and did not let up a run. Things got pretty shaky as he let up 3 hits and a walk. His 20 pitch inning was good enough to set the Pirates up for victory thanks to big games from Jack Wilson, Andrew McCutchen and Garret Jones.
Grabow’s grit and hard work have landed him many accolades throughout his time in the league. The veteran left hander was on the World Baseball Classic team this past spring. He came out of the pen for USA and did a solid job. Just recently the Pirates put up one of his WBC jerseys up for auction.
Along with many other cool memorobilla pieces Grabow was front and center on PNC Park’s main concourse. The auction was held to benefit Pirates charities. As I stood there drooling over these wonderful pieces my jaw dropped as well when I looked at the prices each was going for. Grabow’s jersey had reached $800,far more than that Andy LaRoche jersey seen to the far left. It goes to show that Grabow is respected for what he has done on his time with the Pirates. I wish him the best wherever his career takes him.