Woodchucks Sign Merrill’s Grunenwald

Alex Grunenwald, a sophomore infielder at Chandler-Gilbert Community College, has signed with the Wisconsin Woodchucks for the 2011 season. 

A native of Merrill, Wisconsin, the 6-foot-3-inch 225 pound first-baseman will return to central Wisconsin this summer, after signing a letter of intent to play at Division I Illinois-Chicago (UIC) next fall.  Grunenwald is the second Wisconsin Valley Conference alumni to sign with the ‘Chucks this season, joining former D.C. Everest Evergreen Cameron Amsrud.

Grunenwald is currently in his second season with the Chandler-Gilbert Coyotes, after spending a redshirt season at Louisiana Tech in 2009. 

“This fall they [UIC] came down, offered me, got me up there for a visit,” said Grunenwald.  “I really liked it and I decided to take it- it’s going to be real nice to be closer to home.”

Currently, Grunenwald is hitting .256 with 6 RBI and a .377 on-base percentage on the spring at Chandler-Gilbert, while the team holds a 9-12 record.  Grunenwald hit .326 with a team high 32 RBI in 2010.

“We’ve struggled early on this year as a team, but we’ve really started to pick it up recently here in conference play.  Personally- this season is going okay, it also started off a little slow, but I’m starting to pick things up now.”

A multi-sport star in high school, Grunenwald chose Louisiana Tech over interest from dozens of Division I schools to play football. 

“I definitely have watched them ever since I was a kid,” said Grunenwald of the Woodchucks.  ” My family actually hosted Woodchucks players in the past when I was a little kid, so I’ve always looked up to them- and I still stay in touch with a few of them. 

“When I was about seven or eight, I was actually a batboy for the Woodchucks, so it’s kind of funny now where I’ll be actually playing for them.  I’m really just looking forward to the season and playing at home, it’s gonna be pretty exciting to actually play [for the Woodchucks].”