By Sam Blum
July 18, 2014
Drew Jackson (Stanford) hadn’t started a game in four days, and had seen his batting average slip to .157. His two dropped pop-up’s this season had all but taken away two Cotuit (14-16-1) wins. Things had not been going well for the second-year Kettleers infielder.
But on Friday, a season of frustrations took a back seat to one of Jackson’s best performances of the season.
“I’m just coming out every day and hoping I’m starting,” Jackson said. You’ve got to approach every pregame the same way. He put me back out there and I just tried to find my pitch.”
Jackson went 1-for-2 at the plate in Friday’s 4-3 loss at Yarmouth-Dennis (17-14) on Friday. He reached base two more times on two hit by pitches, and made run-saving defensive plays at third base.
With runners at second and third and no outs, Cotuit was trying all it could to nurse it’s 1-0 lead. Andrew Stevenson (LSU) lined a shot that Jackson lunged to his right to make a play on. He stepped on third base for a crucial double play.
“I was running that play through my head,” Jackson said. “I was like, ‘If a line drive gets to me, I’ll tag third.’ And it happened. It’s funny.”
In the sixth, he made a spectacular catch diving into the stands in left field. The catch was called back because he ran out of play to make it. In the eighth, he saved a run on an in between bouncer between short and third.
At the plate, Jackson got a hit and scored a run in the fifth inning. After getting hit by a pitch in the seventh, he got hit again in the ninth to extend the game.
He appeared to stare down closer Dimitri Kourtis (Mercer) as he walked to first base.
“It wasn’t because I thought he did it on purpose,” Jackson said. “It was because I was in so much pain. It was almost the shock. I was like, ‘All right, I gotta run to first.”
The two hit by pitches aren’t the only boo-boos that Jackson has had this season, but the past two games he’s begun to turn a corner, both defensively and at the plate.
In a lineup stacked with powerful hitters, Jackson is beginning to have a presence.