Brett Jackson is the Cubs 1st round 31st overall pick of the 2009 draft. Jackson is a 6 foot 2 and 210 pound left handed hitting and right handed throwing center fielder, just 21 years of age. Brett is very athletic with solid overall body strength, and projects to be a starter in the majors.
He is currently ranked 2nd overall among Cubs prospects by Baseball America and is the 74th overall prospect in all of baseball. Jackson has a plus arm in center field to go along with plus range. Prior to the draft Brett Jackson was ranked as the second best overall athlete, among all college players in the 2009 draft by Baseball America.
Brett Jackson had a solid 3 year college career at the University of California with a .303 batting average, 91 runs, 85 RBI, 65 walks, 117 strikeouts, and 27 stolen bases in 481 at bats.
Look for him to be the Cubs lead off hitter in the not to distant future. Jackson has tremendous speed that I was able to get a glimpse of this spring training on Comcast. He was on first base when Micah Hoffpauir hit a double, and before I could blink he was crossing home plate. His scouting report(The Baseball Cube) has his speed listed at 87 (for comparison Jacoby Ellsbury is listed at 95 for speed, B.J. Upton at 89, Ryan Theriot at 83, and James Adduci is listed at 75).
Brett is also a very patient hitter at the plate in college his lowest on base percentage came in 2007 his freshman year when he hit .230/.382/.279. Jackson’s next two years in college were much better in 2008 he hit .307/.404/.441(Batting Average/on base percentage/slugging percentage), and in 2009 he improved even more .321/.410/.564. He was drafted by the Cubs after that and his professional career began.
Despite only playing in 53 minor league games last year Jackson scored 50 runs.
It is safe to say that Brett has already opened some eyes. He played 3 games in rookie league, 24 at Boise and then was promoted to Peoria. In 211 total minor league at bats last year he hit .318/.418/.488 with a .906 on base plus slugging percentage. Jackson had 13 stolen bases in 15 attempts, and hit 8 home runs (7 of those came in Peoria). He showed great patience at the plate like he did in college.
Brett Jackson was in spring training with the Cubs this year, and although he only had one hit (a triple) he walked 4 times, scored 3 runs and ended with a .333/.750/1.000 ... in very limited playing time.
Depending on how he does in minor league camp, I could see him skipping High A Daytona and going right to AA Tennessee. The Cubs may not want to rush him at the beginning of the season, so chances are he will start the season in Peoria or Daytona. After 3 years playing in college, Brett is pretty polished, he might be ready for the majors as soon as 2011, but 2012 is more likely. If he picks up where he left off last season, expect him to move through the farm system pretty quickly.
What do I expect from Jackson? Based on a limited sample size, he will likely hit for average, with a good on base percentage... lots of doubles and his speed will likely help him get his share of triples, 15 to 20 home runs, 20 to 40 stolen bases.
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