Lee: Let’s move away from the draft now and talk a little bit about 2018. Obviously, you moved straight from high school to pro ball. What were the biggest differences between your life in high school and your life as a professional and did you face any challenges during your transition like fatigue or adapting to better pitching?
Groshans: The biggest difference and the hardest thing I would say is it’s an everyday grind. In high school, you play twice a week and you still have practices but in pro ball, you practice everyday in the mornings and then you go and play games so just the biggest difference is you go from playing two games a week to six.
That’s something that was definitely a big jump for me, and it was hard. I got fatigued a lot at first because my body wasn’t used to obviously playing everyday, but also playing in the Florida heat. It was hard on the body. I remember when I got drafted, I came in at 205 and I left the GCL my first year at 190 pounds. I was doing good workouts, I was eating right, taking care of my body but you have to go out there and triple your intake because of all the work you’re doing. It was a big adjustment but if you want to be a big leaguer, if you want to be great, it’s something that you have to go through.
Lee: Last year, you had a really good start in Lansing and then, unfortunately, you got injured. How did the injury affect you mentally and how did you stay positive during the long rehab process?
Groshans: It was tough. I was up there with a good group of guys, great coaching staff. It obviously hurt a little bit mentally because I was in great condition. I was feeling great, and obviously that happened. It was hard. The biggest thing was coming to rehab everyday and doing my stuff and watching people I played with get moved up and go further along in their careers and I’m sitting there like, “man, I got to deal with this injury.”
But me and my dad, my mom, and my brother talked a lot and the biggest thing was getting my relationship right with God. That was something that really helped me pull through and stay strong, stay positive and to this day, I still pray that I keep my faith and have a healthy 2020. It was definitely hard at first but now with my family behind me, the staff behind me, it’s easy to go in and have a positive day so I’m grateful for that.
The biggest thing was coming to rehab everyday and doing my stuff and watching people I played with get moved up and go further along in their careers and I’m sitting there like, “man, I got to deal with this injury.”
Lee: The good news is that the rehab process is basically over, and I know you’ve posted a lot of stuff on Twitter about your excitement for this upcoming season. Have you been working on anything in particular this offseason? Any holes in your game that you’ve tried to address?
Groshans: Mostly just focusing on staying consistently healthy. I was off to a really good start offensively last year and that’s something I take pride in. It’s something I’m really trying to hammer down on now – just picking up right back where I left off. But also, defensively, that’s something that I’ve always been really good at. Once I got to pro ball, I hit a little bit of a struggle at first so I’ve really been working and grinding everyday with the coaches on staying consistent and being the best player I can be. Because at the end of the day, no matter where they put me, the goal is to be the best player I can be and the best teammate moving forward.
After talking about his time as a professional, we then moved on to discuss hitting philosophy, defensive outlook, and the Blue Jays’ efforts to improve minor league pay.