Former Pirates’ shortstop Frank Garriola introduced himself to the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters in style Monday after taking advantage of the opportunity to finish the summer in the Northwoods League. Garriola went 2-4 with an inside-the-park grand slam and a two-run double in his first game with his new team, propelling them to an 11-4 victory over the Green Bay Booyah.
The Northwoods League is among the most prestigious summer baseball leagues in the nation. Garriola hopes to catch the eyes of scouts and potentially sign a contract as a free agent with a MLB affiliated team. He has the full backing of Pirates’ general manager George Vranau and the entire Pirates’ organization.
The Rafters victory moved them into first place in the Great Lakes West Division.
Garriola led the Sunset Baseball Leage with 40 RBIs while playing for the Pirates this summer. He also tied with teammate Jason Ajamian for a league-leading eight home runs. He led the Pirates with an 1.271 OPS and batted exactly .400 in his 32 games with Ventura County.
The Rapids return home to face Green Bay again 7 p.m. July 23.