Tigers' Robbie Grossman caps career year by gaining entry to 20-20 club

Chris McCosky
The Detroit News

Chicago — Robbie Grossman was well aware entering the game Saturday that he needed one more stolen base to join the 20-20 club — 20 home runs and 20 steals. He did not try to hide the fact that he wanted that on his resume badly.

“It means a lot to me,” said Grossman, who had never stolen more than nine in a season. “God-willing I will get a chance to get it.”

The first chance he got came in the fourth inning and he took it. He led off with a single and took one pitch to size up White Sox starter Lucas Giolito’s time to the plate. He bolted on the second pitch, swiping the bag without a throw.

Tigers' Robbie Grossman hits a single during the fourth inning on Saturday against the White Sox.

“I think (stealing bases) is something that’s evolved in my game the last year or two,” Grossman said. “It’s just about picking my spots and going. It’s just trusting myself as a player. I’ve watched other guys do it and they say, ‘Hey, if it’s a good time to do it, trust yourself and go.’”

It was a good time to do it for two reasons. One, Giolito was more interested in the batter (Jonathan Schoop) and Grossman got himself in scoring position. Jeimer Candelario singled him home for the game’s first run in a game the Tigers would go up 4-0 and lose 5-4.

"I love that Robbie had a great year and got to the 20-20 plateau," manager AJ Hinch said. "It's really hard to do. It's not something you see every year on every team. But he earned it by his preparation and ability to play every day. He's played the most games he's played in his career.

"Speed and power, great combination." 

Grossman is the seventh player in Tigers’ history to enter the 20-20 club. He joins Chad Curtis (1995), Damion Easley (1997), Kirk Gibson (1984-85, 1987), Curtis Granderson (2007, 2009), Gary Sheffield (2007) and Alan Trammell (1986).

chris.mccosky@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @cmccosky