Nelson moves to Texas A&M
- Updated: February 18, 2019
JAKE NELSON is playing college baseball in Texas, and he took a circuitous route to get there.
Even if you’re familiar with Nelson, a right-handed pitcher, you probably lost track of him shortly after he graduated from Hopkinton High School in 2014. His story is a good one.
Nelson, 22, spent a year at Phillips Andover (Mass.) Academy, and then played college baseball at the University of Pennsylvania. He shared the Ivy League lead in saves with five as a freshman in 2016, when he went 1-1 with a 3.12 ERA. His sophomore season was cut short by shoulder inflammation, but he posted a 2.25 ERA and three saves in 16 innings.
Labrum surgery prevented him from playing at Penn as a junior, but he received a medical redshirt. He graduated from Penn early (in December) with the intent to transfer, and landed at Texas A&M in January. He pitched a scoreless inning of relief in Saturday’s victory over Fordham, which was his first appearance with the Aggies.
“They heard I was looking around and they had room to fill a spot,” Nelson said. “I went on an official visit and they offered me a spot on the team and a spot in the business school as well. After I came down here it was an easy decision. I knew this is where I wanted to go.
“My arm already feels better in the warm weather. I was up to 95 (mph) in a couple of preseason outings this spring. I was happy I was able to get my velo (velocity) back up after the surgery. It’s not like Tommy John surgery where guys come back stronger. They don’t know as much about the shoulder, I guess.”