If you are a baseball fan, you might have heard of Marquis Grissom, the former center fielder who played for six teams in his 17-year MLB career. He was a two-time All-Star, a World Series champion, and a four-time Gold Glove winner. He also led the National League in stolen bases twice.
But have you heard of Vaughn Grissom, the young infielder who made his MLB debut for the Atlanta Braves in 2022? He is one of the most promising prospects in the Braves’ organization, and he has already shown his potential with his bat and glove.
But are they related? The answer is no. Despite sharing the same last name and playing for the same team, Vaughn Grissom and Marquis Grissom are not related by blood or marriage. They are just two talented players who happen to have a common surname.
Vaughn Grissom’s Rise to the Majors
Vaughn Grissom was born on January 5, 2001, in Orlando, Florida. He attended Paul J. Hagerty High School, where he played baseball alongside Riley Greene, who is now a top prospect for the Detroit Tigers. As a senior in 2019, he batted .389 and pitched to a 0.82 ERA.
He was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the 11th round of the 2019 MLB draft, and he signed for $250,000, forgoing his commitment to play college baseball at Florida International University. He made his professional debut with the Gulf Coast League Braves, batting .288 with three home runs and 23 RBIs in 44 games.
He did not play in 2020 due to the cancellation of the minor league season, but he impressed the Braves’ staff with his performance at their alternate training site. He began the 2021 season with the Augusta GreenJackets of the Low-A East, where he hit .319/.418/.464 with seven home runs, 43 RBIs, and 16 stolen bases in 65 games. He was promoted to the Rome Braves of the High-A East in September, where he continued to rake with a .318/.424/.455 slash line in 22 games.
He started the 2022 season with Rome again, but he quickly moved up to the Mississippi Braves of the Double-A Southern League in July. He hit .363/.408/.516 with three home runs and 14 RBIs in 22 games at that level before getting called up to the majors on August 10.
He made his MLB debut that night as the Braves’ starting second baseman at Fenway Park against the Boston Red Sox. He went 2-for-4 with a two-run home run over the Green Monster and a stolen base. He became the youngest player in either league history to homer and steal a base in his major league debut.
He finished his rookie season with a .286/.328/.429 slash line with five home runs and 25 RBIs in 49 games. He also played shortstop and third base for the Braves, showing his versatility and defensive skills.
He entered the 2023 season as one of the candidates to be the Braves’ starting shortstop after Dansby Swanson left in free agency. However, he lost the job to Orlando Arcia and was optioned to Triple-A Gwinnett Stripers on March 20. He is expected to be back in the majors soon, as he is one of the Braves’ top prospects and future stars.
Marquis Grissom’s Legacy
Marquis Grissom was born on April 17, 1967, in Atlanta, Georgia. He was one of sixteen children of Marion and Julia Grissom. He grew up in Red Oak, Georgia, where he played baseball and other sports. He was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds out of high school but chose to attend Florida A&M University instead.
He played baseball as a pitcher and outfielder for two seasons at Florida A&M, where he posted a .408 batting average and led Division I in runs per game and triples per game in 1988. He was drafted by the Montreal Expos in the third round of that year’s draft and signed for $50,000.
He made his professional debut with Jamestown Expos of New York-Penn League that fall and advanced quickly through their system. He made his MLB debut on August 22, 1989, for Montreal against San Francisco Giants.
He became a regular starter for Montreal in 1990 and established himself as one of the best defensive center fielders and base stealers in baseball. He made his first All-Star team in 1993 when he hit .298 with 19 home runs, 95 RBIs, and 53 stolen bases. He also won his first Gold Glove that year. He repeated both feats in 1994, when he led the NL with 36 stolen bases in the strike-shortened season.
He was traded to the Atlanta Braves before the 1995 season, where he joined his hometown team and helped them win their first World Series title since moving to Atlanta. He hit .305 with 12 home runs, 42 RBIs, and 29 stolen bases in the regular season and .444 with three home runs and eight RBIs in the World Series against the Cleveland Indians.
He played one more season with Atlanta before being traded to Cleveland in 1997. He had another stellar season with the Indians, hitting .262 with 17 home runs, 74 RBIs, and 22 stolen bases. He also won the ALCS MVP award after hitting .474 with four home runs and seven RBIs against the Baltimore Orioles. He played in his second consecutive World Series but lost to the Florida Marlins in seven games.
He spent one more season with Cleveland before signing as a free agent with the Milwaukee Brewers in 1998. He played three seasons with Milwaukee, hitting .267 with 66 home runs, 211 RBIs, and 63 stolen bases in 432 games.
He was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers before the 2001 season, where he played two seasons and hit .249 with 35 home runs, 115 RBIs, and 34 stolen bases in 266 games.
He signed as a free agent with the San Francisco Giants before the 2003 season, where he played his final three seasons and hit .272 with 35 home runs, 149 RBIs, and 37 stolen bases in 358 games. He also played in his third World Series in 2003 but lost to the Anaheim Angels in seven games.
He retired after the 2005 season at age 38. He finished his career with a .272 batting average, 2,251 hits, 227 home runs, 967 RBIs, and 429 stolen bases in 2,165 games. He ranks among the top ten all-time leaders for Montreal/Washington franchise in several categories, including hits, runs, doubles, triples, home runs, RBIs, stolen bases, and games played.
He also ranks among the top ten all-time leaders for Atlanta franchise in postseason batting average (.317), hits (52), runs (31), doubles (11), triples (2), home runs (7), RBIs (25), and stolen bases (11).
He is currently a coach for the Washington Nationals, where he works as their first base coach and outfield instructor.
Vaughn Grissom and Marquis Grissom are two baseball players who share a last name but not a family connection. They both play or played for the Atlanta Braves but at different times and positions. They both have impressive skills and achievements on the field but different styles and personalities off it.
Vaughn Grissom is a rising star who has a bright future ahead of him. Marquis Grissom is a retired legend who has a lasting legacy behind him. They are both part of the baseball history and culture of Atlanta and beyond.