Hot Prospect: Justin Jackson, SS Dunedin

Nobody is happier about Justin Jackson's hot streak this season than any Jays fan who has faint memories of El numero uno, Tony Fernandez. Since then, the Jays have filled the SS positions with some willing and able people, but never with guys who have the ability to make an impact on the outcome of the game. This does exclude Marco Scutaro's run thus far since he has been instrumental to the Jays. Nobody would have predicted that would happen, but he'll be able to hold the fort until JJ gets enough experience to make the bigs.

Jackson's 2009 stats don't look very impressive when looked at altogether
.246 avg, 134 AB, 33, hits, 6 doubles, 1 triple, no homers, 10 SBs, 22 walks and a scary 51 Ks (38%)

However, if you take April out of the equation the story is entirely different
May stats:
.367 avg, 49 AB, 18 hits, 4 doubles, 1 triple, 3 SBs, 9 walks, 15 Ks (30%)

Although the reduction in Ks is not monumental, it is an improvement. The fact that a good portion of his hits started to become extra base hits after April is very encouraging even if the homerless part is worrisome.

If we break down JJ's issues, it becomes evident that he has serious problems hitting right-handed pitching. His average vs lefties is .389, while it is .224 against righties. He also seems to have issues playing in Dunedin, where he is hitting .224 in comparison to .269 while away where he has 5 of his 7 extra base hits.

Overall the increased number of hits is very nice and JJ seems likely to become a top of the order or bottom of the order player with very little power. At 6'1" 186 lbs you would think that he'd be able to put a hurt on once in a while, but I guess they can't all be Pedroia types, can they. He did have 7 HRs last year, which leads me to believe that if he squares up the ball enough he'll get his 5-10 HRs per season. I hope he keeps up the hot streak and does enough to get a trial in AA some time this season.

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