Following a season in which he made his Major League Baseball debut with the Texas Rangers, Branford’s Mike Olt recently garnered another distinction as he was named the organization’s Tom Grieve Minor League Player of the Year on Jan. 7.
Olt, a first round pick in 2010, batted .282 with 17 doubles, 28 home runs, and 82 RBI for the Double-A Frisco RoughRiders and led the Texas League in slugging percentage with a mark of .579 en route to making Baseball America’s Minor League All-Star team prior to debuting with Texas on Aug. 1. Olt, 24, and other members of the Texas organization will receive their awards at the Dr. Pepper Awards Show on Friday, Jan. 11 at the Arlington Convention Center. Olt will then attend the Rangers’ Fan Fest over the weekend and plans to leave early for Spring Training in Texas later this month.
“It’s a great accomplishment with so many great players in our organization for them to think of me having the best year of everyone,” said Olt, whose summer in the big leagues was highlighted by a walk-off single against the Detroit Tigers. “It’s a huge honor and will be cool to get down there and accept the award.”
Upon his promotion to the MLB circuit last summer, Olt, singled in his first at-bat and scored a run in a Rangers’ victory against the Angels, after which he notched two RBI during a weekend series in Kansas City. Olt later laced a pinch-hit single that plated Nelson Cruz for a walk-off win against Detroit’s Phil Coke, then played a series at Fenway Park and another in Yankee Stadium, the latter in which he doubled against Ivan Nova for his first extra-base hit in the bigs.