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Joliet West grad Cody Grosse set to chase MLB dream after being drafted by Seattle Mariners

Cody Grosse watches the flight of the ball in a game for Southeastern Louisiana earlier this season. Grosse, a 2015 graduate of Joliet West, recently was selected in the Major League Baseball draft by the Seattle Mariners.
Cody Grosse watches the flight of the ball in a game for Southeastern Louisiana earlier this season. Grosse, a 2015 graduate of Joliet West, recently was selected in the Major League Baseball draft by the Seattle Mariners.

Cody Grosse was quick to recognize his world has been a little chaotic.

Two weeks ago, the 2015 graduate of Joliet West was in the midst of wrapping up his collegiate baseball career at Southeastern Louisiana.

But then the whirlwind began.

Grosse, a shortstop, was selected in the 30th round of the MLB draft by the Seattle Mariners, and in what felt like a quick sequence of events, Grosse found himself making arrangements to begin his journey into the world of organized baseball. After signing his pro contract, Grosse was assigned to the Mariners’ rookie league franchise, which is in Peoria, Arizona.

“Two days after I was drafted, I had to pack up and head to Arizona,” Grosse said. “It’s been kind of crazy. I didn’t really know what was going on. It’s a whole process. Getting used to things, especially not knowing anyone really. It’s kind of like going back to college for the first time.”

The draft process proved to be a somewhat stressful experience for Grosse, who expected to be drafted, but because of the inexact nature of the proceedings, wasn’t sure when or even if that call would come.

“It was a little bit in between. I knew going into the year I had some pro interest,” Grosse said. “But I feel like if you’re not like a first-round type of guy, you never really know for sure what’s going on with it all.”

But now that the draft process is over, Grosse is ready to jump in with both feet, especially in respect to all of the tools modern baseball franchises have to help evaluate and improve player performance.

“It’s been fun so far, learning, looking at things from a different perspective. With all the technology they have and the numbers, it’s pretty cool how they go about things,” Grosse said. “It’s been fun being here so far.

“It’s definitely new stuff. I’ve known about some of these things, but I’ve never had the chance to experience it. We haven’t been here long enough for them to have the data that they need to break it down, but they will. I’m looking forward to diving more into it. I can easily see, just in my first few days, how they can help me become a better baseball player.”

Grosse had a sensational two-year run at Southeastern Louisiana, earning second team All-Southland Conference honors in 2018 and picking up an honorable mention nod this past spring.

His play is anchored by strong defense, an assertion backed up by his selection to Southland’s All-Conference defensive squad.

And although defense has been his calling card, he’s no slouch with the bat either. Grosse hit .314 in his junior campaign, and while that number regressed to .252 in his senior year, he still was very productive, driving in 38 runs.

His skill set also extends to the base paths. Grosse was second on the team with 50 runs scored and was a terror stealing bases, racking up 43 bags over the course of his two seasons at Southeastern.

His collegiate success stories aren’t limited to only Southeastern. After spending one season at Chicago State University, Grosse transferred to John Logan where he had a tremendous campaign.

He hit .354 at John Logan with five home runs and 36 RBIs to go along with 22 stolen bases. That season was a large part of his landing at Southeastern Louisiana, which, as an NCAA Division I school, increased his exposure in regards to his draftability.

Grosse enters Rookie League play with an open mind to whatever the Mariners would like him to do.

“I’m a good contact guy, and I consider myself to be a pretty good defender,” Grosse said. “I definitely could see a situation where maybe I could be moved to second. They were saying something about third base, but I’ve never even played third, but I guess we’ll see where that goes. Whatever they want.”