19 years ago, Edwin Jackson made his MLB debut with the Dodgers. Today, he announced his retirement. The former All-Star has 107 career wins and more than 1500 strikeouts.
The Players Alliance Leaders Curtis Granderson & Edwin Jackson Promote Black Baseball In The Spirit Of Jackie Robinson
“As the stark racial minority in all aspects of our game, The Players Alliance has given a voice and platform to our Black players, unified in our stance against systemic racism,” said Curtis Granderson, former MLB player and President of The Players Alliance. “We stand together for what is right and to change our game for the better. The power of our player membership, including our non-Black teammates, coupled with the support of MLB and the Players Association, gives us the unique ability to create increased opportunities for the Black communities we care so much about” — Curtis Granderson.
Jala Norman shines a spotlight on Team USA pitcher and former MLB journeyman Edwin Jackson, who has pitched for an MLB-record 14 squads and grew up all over the map as the son of a military man. She says that experience gives him an edge in Tokyo Olympics.
When it comes to baseball, former major league pitcher Edwin Jackson loves the game too much to walk away from it.
The 37-year-old has not played in the league since 2019 but he still has something left in the tank.
Now, Jackson is playing for something much bigger as he is a member of the USA baseball team competing in the Tokyo Olympics.
Edwin Jackson is famous for playing for 14 major league teams. It turns out his nomadic existence goes way beyond that. @GaryHPhillips talked to Edwin (and a host of other people) about his latest adventure: Playing for the United States in Tokyo. https://t.co/gL2O6gQMYp
— Benjamin Hoffman (@BenHoffmanNYT) July 25, 2021
Jackson already has a World Series title, but he’ll have a shot to win an Olympic Gold Medal, something he’s never done before.
The USA team is filled with former MLB veterans and players who are in different minor league organizations.
Jackson is considered to be one of the leaders on this team and he’ll look to play a significant role.
When it comes to experience playing baseball, Jackson has a lot of it.
He played for an MLB record 14 teams between 2003 to 2019. And this MLBbro remembers every single team he played for.
The former 2009 All-Star went on to list the revolving door of teams he played for.
“I can, but it won’t be quick,” he told the New York Times as he was getting ready to list the teams. “L.A., Detroit — I mean Tampa Bay!”
Jackson went on to finish listing the teams. “Tampa Bay to Detroit. Detroit to Arizona. Arizona to the White Sox. White Sox to St. Louis. St. Louis to D.C. D.C. to Chicago. Chicago to the Braves.
The Braves to the Marlins. The Marlins to San Diego. San Diego to Baltimore, I believe. Baltimore back to the Nationals. The Nationals to Oakland. Oakland to Toronto. Toronto to Detroit.”
Jackson is a nomad in the MLB because he’s constantly been on the move throughout his career.
Now in 2021, he has a chance to represent the United States in the Olympics and bring stability to a squad with high expectations.
He also wants to make a cultural impact on the game.
“Not only do I want to represent the country, I want to represent my fellow African Americans that play this game of baseball,” Jackson told the New York Times. “I want to be able to go influence a young African American player that’s never played baseball before. They look at me and be like, ‘Damn, maybe I could be like him.’”
This is a once and a lifetime opportunity that Jackson is experiencing and the fact that he has the chance to add Olympian to his resume is not something many MLB players get a chance to do.
While he’s been out of the league for a few years, when he steps on that mound, he can still bring it.
“He looks electric,” Todd Frazier said, who’s another veteran on the USA team.
And Frazier isn’t the only person who has noticed that Jackson can still dominate out there.
“Don’t worry about what his age says. His body’s like a 26-year-old,” USA manager Mike Scioscia said.
Jackson will be one player you will want to keep your eye on during the Olympics as the USA team will play its first game on Friday, July 31st.
When he takes the mound, make sure you are tuned in, because you don’t want to miss it.
If you consider yourself a baseball fan, then you should already be counting down the days until the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
If you don’t have the dates saved yet, hurry up and mark your calendars and be prepared to call out of work.
This year’s games are going to be something special.
For the first time since 2008, baseball will be played at the Summer Olympics.
Fortunately for MLBbro Nation, this could mean something huge.
We might only be a few weeks away from watching both Matt Kemp and Edwin Jackson compete on an international level. Get ready.
Both Jackson and Kemp are a part of the 26-man roster that recently secured a berth in the upcoming Tokyo Olympics after defeating Venezuela 4-2 with Jackson on the mound.
Despite the win, and two hitless innings from Jackson, whether or not we see the duo in this year’s Olympic games has yet to be official.
Out of the 26-man roster, only 24 players make the final team. Jackson and Kemp both survived the cut when the qualifying roster went from 28 players to 26.
If you’re wondering why MLBbros like Mookie Betts and Aaron Judge are nowhere to be found on the Olympic roster, it’s because there is a major hurdle MLB players face when making an Olympic team.
That hurdle is the actual MLB season, which will be in full force come the Tokyo games. Plus, Major League Baseball does not allow its active big league players to participate.
This all leaves the United States with limited options when compiling a list of baseball players to send abroad during the month of July.
The solution? A team composed of the best minor league players and the best free agent players that the U.S. has to offer. Matt Kemp and Edwin Jackson should be easy additions to the final roster.
During his 14-year major league career, Kemp became a three-time All-Star, two-time Gold Glove, and a two-time Silver Slugger award winner.
In October 2020, he elected free agency after a short stint with the Colorado Rockies. Kemp is the most decorated player on the current Olympic roster, and his veteran leadership will be needed if the United States wants to win big in Tokyo.
A former All-Star and World Series champion, Jackson is one of nine African American pitchers to ever have a no-hitter in a Major League Baseball game. Like Kemp, Jackson is a veteran, and his leadership and experience on the mound will be key for the United States.
In a conversation with MLBbro.com’s very own Telly Hughes, Jackson admitted that representing the United States is unique in comparison to the teams he’s played for in the past.
“I’ve put on a lot of different jerseys, but this one here is a little different,” said Jackson.
Team USA is set to announce its finalized roster on or after July 1, 2021.