Just over a yr in the past, a baby-faced, 18-year-old Jackson Holliday was terrorizing highschool pitchers in his hometown of Stillwater, Oklahoma. Flash ahead to Monday and Holliday continues to be an adolescent and he’s nonetheless terrorizing opposing pitchers — solely now they’re professionals. The 19-year-old has put collectively an excellent 2023 season and has reached Triple-A, the place the typical pitcher is 27 years outdated.
For his standout season, Holliday was named Baseball America’s Minor League Player of the Year, turning into the second straight Oriole with the accolade after Gunnar Henderson, one other left-handed-hitting infielder drafted by Baltimore out of highschool, received the award in 2022. Henderson is now the favourite to win the American League Rookie of the Year.
Holliday received Baseball America’s 2022 High School Player of the Year and, with Monday’s honor, joined former Minnesota Twins Joe Mauer and Byron Buxton and Royals shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. as the one gamers to obtain each distinctions.
Holliday, picked by the Orioles with the No. 1 total choose in final yr’s draft, flew by the Orioles’ minor league system this yr. The shortstop started in Low-A Delmarva, hitting .396 in 14 video games earlier than being promoted to High-A Aberdeen the place he, once more, impressed.
There, Holliday posted an on-base-percentage of .452 and, by July was in Double-A Bowie, the place it was extra of the identical: He hit .338 and, lastly, moved as much as Triple-A for the season’s remaining month.
Holliday is the second youngest participant in Triple-A and have become solely the third highschool place participant picked first total to succeed in that degree in his first full skilled season. In his 125 video games throughout the 4 rungs of the minor league ladder, Holliday slashed .323/.442/.499 for an OPS of .941.
Holliday and the Triple-A Norfolk Tides will play within the International League championship starting Tuesday towards the Durham Bulls.
Although unlikely, it’s doable the playoff-bound Orioles might add Holliday to their postseason roster. If not, it’s doubtless he’ll make his MLB debut in 2024.