Jaycob Brugman hasn’t even played his first game with the Oakland A’s organization and he is already counting down the days until the season ends.
There’s no need for A’s general manager Billy Beane to worry.
Brugman isn’t looking to take the money and run. He’s just waiting for yet another milestone to come his way.
The Desert Vista graduate was married in August of 2012 to Alexis, saw his longtime dream of becoming a professional baseball player come true after signing a contract with the A’s on Tuesday after being selected in the 17th round last weekend, and in September the couple is expecting their first child.
“It will be hard being away from her for so long,” Brugman said. “She is due right about when the season ends. We’ve been separated by distance before but this obviously will be something we have to share together.”
While Brugman most likely begins his first season of pro ball in Arizona (Rookie League) or Vermont (short-season Single-A) after three successful years at Brigham Young University (BYU), Alexis will stay with her parents in Utah.
“It’s a lot of things happening all at once,” Brugman said. “The timing is right and it’s milestones we will always remember.”
Brugman will find out soon enough where his first stop in his professional career will be, and he can only hope he’ll make an impression similar to the one he had at BYU.
He had a tremendous freshman year in 2011 when he hit .317 with nine home runs, 49 RBIs, 13 stolen bases, and an OPS of .962 to be named to several Freshman All-American teams and the Mountain West Conference Freshman of the Year.
Brugman took a down turn as a sophomore (.271, 2 HR, 29 RBIs), but bounced back nicely this past season as he finished his junior year at .317 with 11 home runs, 52 RBIs and a OPS of 1.021.
“This season was awesome,” Brugman said. “My freshman year, I did really well and got a lot of honors. Then I had kind of a sophomore slump, so it was great to turn it around and finish strong.”
It led to the 6-foot, 190-pound outfielder being selected No. 521 overall by the A’s. Brugman was at his parent’s Ahwatukee home when his named was called.
After the commotion settled down, Brugman, his brothers, and their dad headed to Desert Vista to get some work in and burn off some energy.
“We went over to DV and went to work,” his father, Jay, said. “He’s a good kid, works hard, and deserves this chance. He has the right mentality to make it happen. He understands he has to go to work, that nothing will be given to him, but he will be given the opportunity to make it.”
Brugman, who was named all-state his junior and senior year at Desert Vista, believes the A’s philosophy matches up pretty well with his own.
“It’s a great organization and they are known for getting their guys through the system quickly,” he said. “They look at the team as whole and expect contributions from everyone. There are no big-time players with huge contracts. It is very team-oriented and hopefully someday I will fill that role.”
Before he makes his way to the big-league club, Brugman will have to adjust to the professional life and level of play this summer.
“I was trying to think about what to expect,” he said. “It’s kind of a mystery until you see it for yourself. I’ve been told it is like facing the toughest pitcher you’ve seen in college, but facing him every day. I won’t really know until I get there.”
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