The Top 20 Cubs Prospects - #5 Jay Jackson
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Prospect #5 Jay Jackson
Jackson is another example of a continuing trend which ultimately exemplifies how entirely crappy the Cubs farm system is. Like Flaherty before him, Jackson was a product of the 2008 draft, albiet the 9th round. On one hand it's great that the Cubs have so many fresh prospects in their system with tremendous potential, on the other hand it's probably not a good thing that the system depth is in fact very shallow, especially at the upper levels.
Anyway, Jackson came to Chicago from Furman University, where apparently a major is Awesome Pitching. He shot through the Cubs system like a rocket in 2008, advancing up 3 levels in just a few months. Overall, he pitched in 13 games, 5 started, and he went 4-2 with a 2.88 ERA. In 50 innings of work, he struck out 72, walked 13, and he apparently battled 3 Kryptonian villains to a standstill before tricking them into sacrificing their powers. Then he threw them down a pit. I'm just saying - this guy is awesome.
Jackson, incidentally, not only tosses the baseball with intensity and efficiency; he also carries a mighty club. He hasn't hit for the Cubs since being drafted, but in 513 career college at bats, he's batting .304 with 23 homeruns, 115 RBI, and he's even got 39 BB and 26 steals. But tools-wise, he brings to the table the following:
- As a batter: plus power and speed, but minus contact and patience. Jackson is right where he belongs on the pitcher's mound, but if he reaches Chicago as we have to think he will, then he may challenge Carlos for most dangerous pitcher with a baseball bat
- Push control. He doesn't throw too many walks at this point, but he will probably see his totals worsen with promotion.
- Plus K-Rating. A lot of talented pitchers strike out a lot of batters in the lower levels, but Jackson projects to have good k-ratings into the Majors.
- Plus efficiency. He gits 'er done.
Jackson is very likely to at least taste the Majors in the next 2 years. He's a good pitcher with great stuff, oh and he was a Philosophy Major in college. Chances are, he'll be starting the year in High A ball, and he's got a decent chance of finishing it in Iowa. He's an exciting prospect in the system.
Odds of reaching the Majors = Terry Pratchett publishes another book before he is no longer capable of doing so.
Odds of becoming a successful player at the Major League Level = Andre Dawson becomes a Hall of Famer in 2009
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