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Jason Jennings

Free Agent — No. --
Relief pitcher
Born: July 17, 1978 (1978-07-17) (age 31)
Dallas, Texas
Bats: Left Throws: Right 
MLB debut
August 23, 2001 for the Colorado Rockies
Career statistics
(through August 28, 2009)
Win-Loss     62–74
Earned run average     4.95
Strikeouts     749
Teams

Jason Ryan Jennings (born July 17, 1978, in Dallas, Texas) is a free agent Major League Baseball relief pitcher.

Contents

High school/college years

Jennings attended Poteet High School in Mesquite, Texas, and was a standout in both football and baseball. In football, he won All-District honors at both, kicker and punter. In baseball, as a senior, he was named the District MVP and posted a .410 batting average, hit seven home runs, and pitched his way to a 10-3 record and a 0.92 ERA with 132 strikeouts.

After graduating from Poteet, he attended Baylor University where he played baseball from 1997-1999. Following his junior season at Baylor, Jennings was named by both Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball as the 1999 National Player of the Year. In what would be his final season at Baylor, he struck out 172 hitters in 146.2 innings and hit .382 with 17 homers and 68 RBIs. He also won his second consecutive Big 12 Player of the Year, consensus All-America honors, the Outstanding Player on the 1999 Big 12 All Tournament Team, and a spot on the 1999 All-Big 12 Academic First Team.

Professional career

As a member of the Colorado Rockies, Jason posted his most impressive numbers in the 2002 season when he won the Major League Baseball Rookie of the Year Award in the National League, beating out Brad Wilkerson and Austin Kearns. The fact that half of his games were pitched at Coors Field in Denver (a difficult park for pitchers) made the feat that much more remarkable. In his major league debut, Jennings hit a home run and tossed a complete game shutout, becoming the first major leaguer to accomplish that feat.[1]

From 2003 to 2005, Jennings had three losing seasons and posted an ERA above 5 each year. In 2006, Jennings pitched much better, ending the season with a 3.78 ERA, but had only a 9-13 record due to a lack of run support that ranked near the bottom of the league. From May 29 to the end of the season, Jennings had a 3.17 ERA, which was 4th in the Majors and 2nd in the NL behind Roy Oswalt. He also finished with over 200 innings pitched. He ended his career with the Rockies as the franchise's all-time winningest pitcher. [2] He was surpassed in wins by a Rockies pitcher on 6/23/09 by former teammate Aaron Cook.

On December 12, the Rockies traded Jennings, along with Miguel Asencio, to the Houston Astros for Willy Taveras, Taylor Buchholz, and Jason Hirsh. The deal seemed to work in the favor of the Rockies, who made it to the 2007 World Series with Taveras at the top of the order. Both Buchholz and Hirsh pitched decently in their first season with the Rockies.

2007 was a lackluster year with the Astros for Jennings. In a game against the Padres, he gave up 11 earned runs on 8 hits in two-thirds of an inning with three walks and no strikeouts. [3]

On January 17, 2008, he signed a one-year contract with the Texas Rangers. Jennings ended up going on the DL after just six starts, all in April (missing the rest of the season), in which he struggled mightily. He went 0-5 with an 8.56 ERA, allowing eight home runs in 27 1/3 innings of work, and he made it past the fifth inning only once.

On February 6, 2009, he re-signed with the Rangers to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.[4]

On August 27, 2009, Jennings was designated for assignment, then given his outright release by the Rangers.

Personal life

Jennings and his wife, Kelly, have two children, son Braden, and daughter Bailee. His father, Jim, played baseball for the University of Texas and professionally in the Texas Rangers system. His late grandfather, James Jennings, was the long-time public address announcer for the Dallas Cowboys and Mesquite Championship Rodeo.

References

External links

Awards
Preceded by
Albert Pujols
National League Rookie of the Year
2002
Succeeded by
Dontrelle Willis
Preceded by
Albert Pujols
Players Choice NL Most Outstanding Rookie
2002
Succeeded by
Scott Podsednik
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