Sports

Stanford draft picks ready to start playing some pro baseball

 

Stanford grads Drew Jackson and Logan James, along with former Cardinal baseball player Zach Hoffpauir are getting set to begin their professional careers this week.

Marc Brakeman, who turned 21 on Monday, remains unsigned after being selected in the 16th round by the Boston Red Sox.


Drew Jackson
Jackson, drafted in the fifth round, and James, taken in the 31st round, are both assigned to the Seattle Mariners' Short-A team in Everett.

The Aqua Sox open their season Thursday at home with the first of a five-game series with Eugene. Everett plays 10 of its first 13 games at home.

Hoffpauir, drafted in the 22nd round, could make his professional debut with the Missoula Osprey on Thursday night in Helena, Mont., as the Pioneer League schedule officially gets underway.

The Osprey also visit Billings over the weekend before their home opener on Wednesday night, against Helena.

Jackson, a 6-2, 195-pound agile shortstop, is one of the fastest players on the team and can routinely make difficult plays look easy thanks to his powerful arm.

Jackson proved to scouts that he is not only an above average defender with one of the best arms in college baseball by batting .320, over .100 better than his previous career high.

He was slowed by an injured hand that made him miss 17 games, but came back to hit safely in 20 of the last 23 games.

The Jackson family is accustomed to the MLB draft spotlight, as Drew's brother Brett Jackson was selected in the first round of the 2009 draft.

Brett, who is currently in Triple-A with the San Francisco Giants, has played in 51 Major League games in his career with the Cubs and Diamondbacks.

Brakeman served much of 2015 as Stanford's No. 2 starter when he was not sidelined with an arm injury. He went 2-4 with a 2.91 ERA in 52.2 innings, despite missing 24 games.

The right-hander turned it on late in the year, finishing the year with four straight outings of at least 6.0 innings pitched, including his first career complete game May 23 at Washington State in his final appearance of the season.

Brakeman allowed more than two earned runs in just two of nine starts.

Brakeman's devastating changeup and low-90s fastball caught the eye of scouts in the summer of 2014 during a stellar campaign in the Cape Cod Baseball League.

He was rated as the No. 9 prospect on the Cape by Baseball America after going 3-1 with a 2.19 ERA in 33.0 innings.

The junior struck out 96 batters in 117.2 career innings with 41 punch outs coming in 45.0 innings as a sophomore reliever on Stanford's 2014 Super Regional team.

Hoffpauir, a two-time honorable mention All-Pac-12 player, was Stanford's biggest power threat in 2015.

Despite missing 23 games with a wrist injury, the junior led the team with four home runs and drove in 23 runs in 33 games. He hit .289 after batting .324 with seven homers and 35 RBI in 59 games during a breakout sophomore campaign.

A native of Glendale, Arizona, Hoffpauir is also a member of the Stanford football team.

He played 12 games at safety last season and ranked seventh on the team in tackles with 44, including a career best 15 against Washington State.

James, a native of Fair Oaks, California, could be a valuable piece to a professional club, as the left-hander features a low-90s fastball along with above-average off-speed stuff.

He has gone 8-11 with a 4.93 ERA during 144.1 innings in his career, while making 13 starts and appearing 45 times out of the bullpen.

An asset to Stanford's 2014 Super Regional run, James has struck out 117 batters in his career, but has battled control issues, walking 85.

Opponents bat just .240 off the lefty.

James saved a career high and Stanford best four games in 2015, all coming against NCAA tournament teams.

— Palo Alto Online Sports/Stanford Athletics

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