Jackson, the Angels’ second round pick from the 2018 draft, was quick to showcase his tools and high upside despite struggling at the plate in the second half of the short season. After slashing .317/.374/.598 with five home runs and 11 extra base hits in 21 games with the AZL Angels, Jackson’s productivity waned in his last 22 games after being bumped to the Rookie-level Orem Owls, finishing the season by regressing to .254/.314/.491 with seven home runs and 22 extra base hits.
Jackson sports a lean, athletic build that projects to add strength and weight as he matures. He is a naturally powerful, quick-twitch athlete who creates surprising pop for his size, with plus raw power and above-average game power already present. He is able to time up his elite bat speed and polished natural swing mechanics to create a powerful, compact stroke that keeps his bat path on plane and gets his power to all fields. Jackson is still only 18-years-old, and his youth showed up in his aggressive approach, striking out 59 times in 173 at-bats. It’s not unexpected given his inexperience and raw tools, and some patience and selectivity at the plate will only grow the game power profile. Defensively, Jackson possesses a solid foundation to stick at shortstop, and while the arm strength is presently fringe-average, a quick first step, confident hands and strong body control help make up the difference, enough to see him sticking at the position long term. Jackson has shown natural instincts on the bases, stealing successfully in 10 of 12 attempts, and as he collects more reps, should add to his offensive value as a consistent threat on the bases. Jackson also brings a solid work ethic, leadership qualities, maturity, and passion for the game.
His overall athleticism, raw talent, and high baseball IQ make a strong case for him moving through the Angels’ system quickly. The added strength could get the arm to average and keep him at short in the big leagues, but even if a move to second base is needed, the plus hit tool and plus power at a premium position will be coveted. The ceiling is a high-impact middle infielder, a potential Role 60.