Brett Jackson

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Brett Elliott Jackson

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Biographical Information[edit]

Brett Jackson was a first-round pick in the 2009 amateur draft who played briefly in the majors and was on Team USA several times.

Jackson hit .385 as a high school senior. He only batted .230/~.356/.279 as a college freshman at the University of California, with 20 strikeouts in 61 AB. Jackson improved to .307/~.381/.441 as a sophomore. That summer, he batted .238/.347/.361 for the Cotuit Kettleers of the Cape Cod League with 29 runs, 4th in the league. Baseball America rated him the #8 prospect in the circuit.

Jackson hit .321/~.401/.564 as a junior, finishing second in the Pacific-10 Conference with 6 triples and 6th with 17 doubles. He made All-Conference. He was taken 31st overall in the 2009 amateur draft, chosen by the Chicago Cubs. He was signed by scout John Bartsch and made his pro debut that year with the AZL Cubs, going 5 for 11 with 3 walks, 1 triple, 6 runs and 4 RBI in 3 games, then was quickly promoted to the Boise Hawks. He hit .330/.443/.398 in 24 games there, then got another promotion, finishing up with the Peoria Chiefs, where he batted .295/.383/.545 with 7 homers, 11 steals and 30 runs in 26 games. Baseball America rated him as the #3 Northwest League prospect behind Hak-ju Lee and Edinson Rincon.

Jackson began 2010 with the Daytona Cubs and hit .316/.420/.517 with 8 triples and 56 runs in 67 games. He was then promoted to AA. He also made the US team for the 2010 Futures Game. He started in center field for the US and hit 7th. He struck out against Simon Castro in the 1st inning. He moved from CF to RF to open the 2nd when Mike Trout stayed in place of the injured Domonic Brown. Jackson opened the 4th with a walk from Julio Teheran, but was picked off by World catcher Wilin Rosario. In the 5th, he was replaced by pinch-hitter Ben Revere. He was 6 for 9 with a double, homer, four walks, four runs and six RBI for Team USA in the 2010 Pan American Games Qualifying Tournament, the best hitter on a team that included Mike Trout, Eric Hosmer, Todd Frazier and Mike Moustakas (though he did so in a backup role).

He did a fine job for two teams in 2011, hitting .256/.373/.443 in 67 games in AA and .297/.388/.551 for the AAA Iowa Cubs. He hit 20 home runs, scored 84 runs, drew 73 walks and stole 21 bases in 28 tries. He was named the Cubs' top prospect by both and Baseball America, edging out Anthony Rizzo and Javier Baez. He was second in the Cubs chain in runs (7 behind Bryan LaHair), tied Rebel Ridling and Michael Burgess for 4th in homers, tied Logan Watkins and Carlos Penalver for 8th in steals and led in walks (two ahead of Matt Cerda). He was back with Team USA in the 2011 Baseball World Cup, starting in right field and hitting .412/.462/.588. Only Joe Thurston had a better average for the US. Jackson had 13 putouts, one assist and no errors. He was 0 for 1 for the US when they won Silver in the 2011 Pan American Games, as Brett Carroll manned right for the USA.

Jackson opened 2012 back in Iowa, producing at a .256/.338/.479 rate and going 27-for-32 in steal attempts. He had 12 triples and 15 home runs. He was 7th in the Cubs organization in runs (between Jim Adduci Jr. and Alfredo Amezaga), tied Gioskar Amaya for 2nd in triples (2 behind Rubi Silva), 9th in homers (between Baez and Ridling) and 7th in steals (between Watkins and Arismendy Alcantara). He was 7th in the 2012 PCL in stolen bases and led in triples, one ahead of David Lough and Jermaine Mitchell.

Brett made his major league debut with the Cubs on August 5, 2012 starting in centerfield and batting second in a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers. He went 2 for 4 with a run and a walk, getting his first hit off Joe Blanton in the 5th inning. Another Cubs top draft pick, Josh Vitters, made his major league debut as a pinch-hitter during the same game. He played 44 games in the majors that season, but hit just .175, with 4 homers and 9 RBIs. The Cubs were starting to load up on top prospects at that time, and his lack of success at the major league level meant that he became lost in the shuffle. His hitting troubles then followed him to the minor leagues in 2013, as he hit just .223 in 61 games for the Iowa Cubs and soon found himself back in AA, where he hit .200. Thing were no better in 2014. Back at Iowa, he hit .210 in 81 games and on August 14th, he was traded to the Arizona Diamondbacks for Blake Cooper, a minor leaguer. The change of organizations did not kelp him, as he batted .188 in 11 games for the Reno Aces. Still, the D-Backs called him up in September, but he hardly played, getting just 4 hitless at-bats in 7 games. He was dropped off the 40-man roster after the season, and played one final year in the minors, with the Sacramento River Cats in the San Francisco Giants system in 2015 after having been selected in the minor league phase of the 2014 Rule V Draft. He hit .220 with 3 homers in 51 games and called it a career, having never been able to recapture his early hitting prowess.

Brett's brother, Drew Jackson, made his major league debut in 2019.


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