Last year at this time, the Grand Valley was all a-buzz about the inaugural season of the Grand Junction Rockies. While it may not necessarily be superstars, it is minor league ball, and there's a direct connection to the Colorado Rockies. It was a good season for the GJ Rockies, making it to the playoffs in their first year in Grand Junction.

Of course, now expectations are on the rise, and no doubt fans will expect another successful season and a return trip to the playoffs. But, it's a crap shoot at best as to what kind of team the GJ Rockies will have. This year's team is largely made up of recent draft picks, including the Colorado Rockies #1 pick Jonathan Gray out of the University of Oklahoma. During this past season with the Sooners, Gray was 10-3 with an ERA of 1.64 in 17 games. He finished the season with 147 strikeouts, just 24 walks, and led his team to the regional against LSU.

While the GJ Rockies will always be a young team, what we get to see is some of the best young players in the country. Some will be good enough to move up in the minors, some will make it all the way to the majors, while others-as good as they may be, may only enjoy an extended career in semi-pro ball.

Last season, the GJ Rockies' games were well attended. Of course, Suplizio Field is a great facility, it's baseball,  and taking the family to the ball park is just great fun, and so the expectation is that attendance this season will be solid again this year.

The Rockies first game is Thursday at Suplizio Field at 7:05 against Ogden. Here is the complete Grand Junction Rockies Schedule.