Tim Livingston, Director of Broadcasting & Media Relations
He’s been here since the beginning of the franchise, and he’ll be back here in 2016, as well. The Sonoma Stompers, presented by Virginia Dare Winery, have announced the re-signing of veteran right-handed pitcher Mike Jackson, Jr. to join what is quickly becoming a strong pitching staff for the 2016 team.
One of the original Stompers in the team’s flagship season in 2014, Jackson has become a fan favorite in Sonoma, as well as being a good pitcher both in the rotation and out of the bullpen.
"Mike's been a staple of this organization since its inception," said Stompers general manager Theo Fightmaster, "I'm thrilled for our team, and for our fans. When Mike takes the ball he has a singular focus, and is about as good as anybody at this level.”
Jackson spent 2014 as a reliever for Sonoma, leading the team with nine saves, before moving into one of the team’s starting spots in 2015. Featuring a fastball in the upper 80’s that reached the low 90’s on occasion to go along with a slider and a splitter, he had great success as a starter.
Traditional stats like ERA (4.72) don’t begin to tell the story of Jackson’s success. He was very unlucky when balls went in play against him, as his .380 BABIP ranked second highest amongst starters in the Pacific Association. He struck out 72 batters in his 83 innings and walked only 23, good for a 3/1 K/BB ratio that was second best on the team.
In addition, the runs he did give up were mostly clustered together. Of his 43 earned runs, 23 came over 3 different starts, which meant over the other 66 1/3 innings, the 20 earned runs he allowed gave him a 2.71 ERA. Fielding Independent Pitching, which accounts for only things a pitcher can control like strikeouts, walks and home runs, liked him too, as his 3.41 mark was third best amongst league starters.
Jackson will be a tremendous asset for the Stompers in 2016, as the team has also announced the re-signings of Sean Conroy, Gregory Paulino and Santos Salidvar to head up the pitching staff for the 2016 season.
Players report to camp on Thursday, May 19 with the season beginning on Tuesday, May 31 as the Stompers travel to take on Vallejo.
The Stompers play their first home game of the 2016 season on Tuesday, June 7 while they host the Admirals in a three game series. Tickets are available online at stompersbaseball.com and can also be purchased at the Stompers Fan Shop, located at 234 W. Napa St. in downtown Sonoma.