Story By Drew Amman:
Former Hog Zach Jackson, a key part of Arkansas’ 2015 run to the College World Series joined us on the phone as MLB Activities are suspended in the midst of the Coronavirus Pandemic. He is pitching in the Toronto Blue Jays Organization (a third round selection in 2016).
“We got the word a little over a week ago, that they were calling to say all has been shut down. They sent all of us home, obviously this is unprecedented for all of us. As far as the organization, the staff, training staff is doing its best to connect and keep us on some kind of program,” Jackson said.
One of Zach’s good friends is former teammate Bobby Wernes who is managing Gulf Coast League (West) in the Philadelphia Phillies organization.
“We’ve been in contact quite a bit and were close down there in Florida for spring training. We’re both in the same boat trying to figure out what to do next,” Jackson adds.
The hard-throwing righthander has reached the Triple-A Level playing for the Buffalo Bisons and he’s scheduled to head back to that level whenever play resumes.
“Haven’t received any definite word, but I don’t assume there would be any change,” Jackson said.
Zach’s spent a good portion of his time in the minors with three famous sons.
“My claim to fame, I have logged the most minor league time with Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Cavan Biggio and Bo Bichette. We got to play together at every level,” Jackson said.
As for Jackson’s pitch arsenal, the 6’4, 230-pound Oklahoma Native is sticking with a three pitch mix.
Fastball, changeup, slider. “It moves more like a slider, but it’s actually a knuckle curve and that’s a pitch they mainly wanted me to work on. There’s really no need coming out of the bullpen in my situation to have a fourth pitch,” Jackson notes.
In 2015, Jackson was named First-Team All-SEC.