/Mangum What’s not to like about him

Mangum What’s not to like about him

Mangum’s play is amazing. He competes well. He wins. I can’t wait for him to play in the NCAA Super Regional at Nashville when Mississippi State plays Vanderbilt. Mangum performs at his best when it is most important, which makes him a special Vandy player. John Cohen, his former coach and now Mississippi State athletic director says that Jake Mangum is a winner when it comes to winning. He is a hardworking ballplayer who will do whatever it takes to win. He puts a lot pressure on the defense of the opposing team at the plate and on base. He shrinks the field defensively. He also makes other players around him more enjoyable because of how he approaches the game. Mangum’s hitting and base running are both great. His defense in centerfield keeps the opposing team from scoring often, on the other. He can turn doubles and triples into runs. It is why it is so remarkable – at least for me – that Mangum (a 22-year old junior) was not drafted in this year’s MLB draft. Instead, the Mets selected him in the 32nd Round. He said he will be returning to Mississippi State for the senior season. He told Mississippi Today that he is returning to Mississippi State for his senior season “absolutely, 100 percent” in a telephone conversation on Thursday morning. I had an idea of the number it would take to sign. It was okay to decline that number when it became clear that I was not going to be able to sign. “I freaking love Mississippi State” You should also know that Mangum could have been selected earlier in the draft if he had agreed to a price with any of the interested teams. In the sixth round, he began to get calls. Representatives from Tampa Bay and Philadelphia called. If he signed for a certain number, they would draft him. Mangum denied it. Other teams called in for later rounds. Mangum expressed gratitude, but not thanks. All this is just another example of the changes in the sport at the professional level. Pros value power more than anything else. Mangum hit three home runs in this season’s game, and four during his three years at State. A pro scout said, under anonymity, that Jake is a great college athlete. It’s clear that he is more concerned about himself than Major League teams. That’s fine. He can go back to school next year. However, he will be one year older. The same scout stated that the average centerfielder in the major leagues hit.275 last year with 18 home runs. There were also 25 stolen bases. This is just an average centerfielder, and no one wants to draft average players. It’s not doubtful that Jake can hit.275 and even higher, or that he can steal 25 bases. It’s the 18 homers that are missing.” But, how can you put a value to competitiveness or the “it factor” – that is that rare, almost indefinable quality that makes you the best when it matters the most? Mangum is a career.350 State hitter. He has hit.447 against Ole Miss and has made enough incredible catches to fill many episodes of ESPN’s SportsCenter. Cohen: “All that I know is that he will be to three Super Regionals, and win an SEC Championship in three seasons. He has played a huge part in all of that. My opinion, and only my opinion: If he does make it to the Big Leagues (which I believe he will), he will be a player who can score 200 runs per season and save tons of runs in centerfield. It’s rare to find a guy who can do this. Jake can.” Mangum brings an unusual intensity to the ballyard every single day. When asked where he gets this, he doesn’t hesitate. He says, “That came from my dad. There is no doubt about that.” “My dad instilled that in me before I could even remember.” Jake Mangum’s father, John Mangum played football at Alabama, and then nine years in the NFL with the Chicago Bears. He was a cornerback and holds the Bears’ record for most passes broken up. He isn’t so sure he can claim credit for his sons’ competitive spirit. He says that Jake has always been like this. He loves to win and hates losing. “I can’t recall him ever being this way,” John Mangum, a financial advisor who primarily works with pro football players, applauds the decision of his son to remain at State. The father said that his son loves the area. It’s been great. He will continue to play pro baseball. He believes he can hit his way through the minors, once given the opportunity. He believes that.” Jake Mangum says, “I don’t want to sound arrogant but I truly believe I can play at any level in this sport.” He believes that.” He will be taking the summer off from baseball, no Cape Cod League this year. He will spend all the extra time in the weight room to gain muscle and speed without sacrificing speed. He says, “I’m not going change my game, but maybe some line drives and flyballs will leave the park.” It’s clear that this would increase the interest in Major League teams. Perhaps, it will even be more than it should._x000D