The Pittsburgh Pirates have promoted shortstop Robbie Glendinning to the Altoona Curve. He leaves the Florida State League as the league leader with a .340 average, .599 slugging percentage and a .992 OPS (119 points higher than second place). He ranks second in the league in OBP. Glendinning has 25 extra-base hits, he’s 6-for-8 in stolen bases and he showed some nice athleticism while playing shortstop every day. He has also played some third base and second base this season and regularly in the past, including stints in winter ball in Australia.

Glendinning hit .268/.360/.361 last year, splitting his time between Morgantown and West Virginia, while also spending time in Extended Spring Training. That was after posting a .571 OPS in Morgantown in 2017, after the Pirates selected him in the 21st round.

The 23-year-old native of Australia put up huge numbers in winter ball this off-season in his home country (1.013 OPS). That was despite the league having some better pitchers than in the past. Glendinning talked about that in our player feature over the winter and looked back on it when I talked to him today about the improvements he has made since last year.

“Playing in the off-season and playing against men who have played a lot of pro ball really helped me, as I had to grow up as a player pretty quick,” Glendinning said about Australia. “Also just I knew the player I was but it just hadn’t come out yet. I really hadn’t had an everyday opportunity yet, coming into the year I had only around 300 at bats through two pro years maybe even less.”

This season actually started off odd for Glendinning, at least on paper. He was with Altoona to begin the season, with Stephen Alemais out of action. In limited time, he hit .300, with an .848 OPS. That was followed by a demotion to Bradenton. While Glendinning knew the move was coming, it helped motivate him even more to get back to the level.

“I knew that the plan was for me to be in Bradenton this year as they were pretty up front with me only going up for a couple weeks until Alemais was back,” Glendinning said. “There was a point that I thought I might stay, but I wasn’t too disappointed, I was just hungrier to get back there because I knew I fit in in that league.”

With Bradenton going on the All-Star break tomorrow and Oneil Cruz scheduled to return to action in the near future, now was a good time to get Glendinning back up to Altoona. He was the best hitter in the entire FSL, and now tries to take his all-around game to the next level.

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