San Antonio Missions outfielder Greg Jacobs is on a path that very few athletes care to take. The…
Greg Jacobs: Happy to be in Tacoma
It happened in the middle of the Missions' home game against Midland, and Jacobs entered the dugout and got some news he wasn't expecting.
"Brundy took me out of the game in the third inning and told me that I wasn't running hard to second base," said Jacobs of Missions manager Dave Brundage. "I was like, ‘What are you talking about? I was busting my butt.'"
Jacobs, shocked and frustrated at the same time, spent the rest of the game pacing the dugout. He questioned his manager. He wondered what the deal was. Then, after the game, he got an answer.
"He called me into the office after the game and I told him it was my opinion that I was running hard," said Jacobs. "He asked me if I would run hard at every level. And I told him I would run that hard at any level, any time, any place.
"He goes, ‘Okay, can you run this hard in Triple-A?'"
"I said, ‘Yeah.'"
"He said, ‘You going to run that hard tomorrow night?"
"I said, ‘Yeah.'"
"He said, ‘Tomorrow night at Triple-A you run that hard out there.'"
"I go, ‘I don't understand.'"
"He goes, ‘Congratulations, you're going up to Triple-A tomorrow. Go bust your bust.'"
Jacobs gathered his thoughts and quickly packed his bags for the Northwest, a region of the country he hadn't been to since playing for Boise of the Northwest League with the Angels' organization in 1998.
Jacobs boarded a plane at 9:30 a.m. in San Antonio, and arrived at Sea-Tac airport at 4 p.m. before heading straight to his new stomping grounds, Cheney Stadium. In his first batting practice session as a Tacoma Rainier, Jacobs walked to the plate sporting the No. 24 on his back and went to work. The lefty tomahawked one pitch after another down the right field line, peppering the wooden wall.
He says he doesn't expect there to be much of an adjustment in terms of comfort. He already knows most of the team, and enjoys their company.
"I was with this whole team last year in Double-A throughout the season, so I know a lot of the guys," he said. "Plus in Spring Training I went to a lot of the big league games so I got to hang around Ramon (Santiago), Mickey (Lopez) and Bucky (Jacobsen).
"They make me feel really comfortable. The Mariners have a lot of great guys. I've been in three different organizations and it's never been like this."
Jacobs isn't in the starting lineup for tonight's game against the Sacramento River Cats, getting a day to adjust to his new surroundings, but says he's been told that he'll play on Friday.
Is missing the Double-A All-Star game, which he surely would have been a part of had he not been promoted, any concern to the minor league veteran?
"No, this is much better," he said, unable to hide a smile. "I'd take this every day.
"I'm excited and I can't wait to be with this team and hopefully I can be a good addition to the lineup."
In 41 games with the Missions, Jacobs was 10th in the Texas League in batting with a .312 average. He added 31 RBI and carried a .370 on base percentage.
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