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Jackson Hornung Loves Being a Catcher

Jackson Hornung Loves Being a Catcher

July 20, 2023

Photo credit: Skidmore College Athletics

Catcher Jackson Hornung was the only backstop selected by the Toronto Blue Jays’ in the 2023 draft. Hornung, who spent the last four years at Skidmore College in New York had a great experience playing college baseball.

“Playing at Skidmore taught me so much,” said Hornung. “The coaching staff and my teammates were better than I could’ve asked for. I learned not just how to improve at baseball but how to improve and grow as a person. I had a great time my four years there and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”

Hornung really loves being a catcher, “There are so many things about being a catcher that I love,” stated Hornung. “I think it’s the best position on the field. I’ve played many others throughout my life and always knew I wanted to continue to catch. Being able to catch and learn from so many different pitchers – it can really help you learn how opponents will pitch to you. I love how catching is constantly evolving. From new ways to steal strikes to positioning, there isn’t one specific way to do it. I’ve learned so much from the catching world and I hope I can learn even more in the coming future.”

One of his takeaways from Skidmore was getting comfortable calling games, as Hornung did just that for four seasons.

“I feel very comfortable calling games,” explained Hornung. “I’ve done it almost every game in college the last four years along with the majority of games I caught in summer ball. Knowing my pitcher and being on the same page as them makes it that much easier. Ultimately the pitcher and I are calling the game together. We work together to figure out the best way to approach hitters and the game.”

He also enjoys working with different pitchers, “Yes, I like working with pitchers,” Hornung added. “I like to have a good relationship with the guys I catch to understand how they think and I want them to be confident in their stuff. Working with pitchers is a lot of give and take. We work together to be the best. I want the guy throwing to want to throw to me and for them to know I have their back at all times.”

And that extra time working with the pitchers has transitioned nicely at the plate; as Hornung slashed .424/.560/.803 in 132 at-bats for Skidmore in 2023.

Hornung likes to hunt for his pitch early in an at-bat, “Recently my approach at the plate is to do damage,” explained Hornung. “I try and look for my pitch in the zone early and attack. I want to get on base as much as possible to help my team win.”

Be sure to follow Jackson Hornung’s progress as a catcher in the Blue Jays’ system.