With the September call-ups, Detroit Tigers fans got to see a preview of the most exciting prospect, JaCoby Jones.
Detroit Tigers fans were hopeful that the young speedster could deliver what they were expecting. And, Jones did not disappoint.
After a quick move through the Minor League ranks, Jones was called up in September and his impact was immediate. His speed and smart decisions helped the Tigers nab a win against the Chicago White Sox.
Making a Name for Himself
Jones spent 79 games down with the Toledo Mud Hens where he had an average .243 in Triple-A Toledo. He only hit 3 home runs and stole 11 bases. Jones was only caught stealing four times. He hit 14 doubles in 292 plate appearances. In those 292 plate appearances, he had 5 triples.
Jones, with the Double-A Erie SeaWolves, hit .312 with 4 home runs and 20 RBIs in 20 games. He made only one error the whole 20 games in Double-A. Jones played three of the nine positions while in Erie. He played center, third base ,and first base. The error that he made was at third base.
While Jones was up with the big club in September, he posted a .214 average in 13 games. In his first game against the Chicago White, Jones went 2-4 with 2 doubles. One was off White Sox, Chris Sale. Later in the same game, he hit a double that put him in scoring position for the sac fly from Tyler Collins. The moment was practically surreal for fans and the team. Jones received a memorable lift from Ian Kinsler – who told Jones to slide: “Cause it’s awesome when you slide to win, as opposed to running through the plate and winning.”
While Jones proved he was an all-around threat to opposing teams, those teams quickly figured him out. The young ballplayer did show a weakness: the curve ball. In a game against Danny Duffy and the Kansas City Royals, Jones went 0-4 with three strikeouts against Duffy.
Future Successes Depend on Hard Work
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Since Jones can play a lot of positions his ceiling is very high within the organization. It is his bat that will hurt him. He can’t handle the curve so teams can just use that against him to get him out. Depending on the success of his off-season work, he might become another Andrew Romine, or he could become one of the best players on the team.
Now that the season is over, the Tigers sent Jones to the Arizona Fall League hoping he can strengthen his all-around game play. Jones is hitting the ball well. He picked up two hits in the league opener. He is currently sitting at 12-35 with a home run.
We will have to see how Jones looks during spring training. With some of the moves that Al Avila wants to make we might being seeing more of Jones next season filling in a potential outfield position or an infield position. The future is bright for this versatile young player. It will be fun for the fans to watch him flourish over the next few years.