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Pirates Prospect Profile: Mitch Jebb Hopes to be Known for More Than Stance



Mitch Jebb, Pittsburgh Pirates, Pirates prospects

One of the more fun accounts on X is Batting Stance Guy.

A fan named Gary Ryness posts videos of him imitating the batting stances of hundreds of current and former players. Not only are the imitations dead on but Ryness adds a comedic touch to many.

It will be fun to see what Ryness’ take might be if he ever imitates Pittsburgh Pirates prospect Mitch Jebb. Currently a middle infielder with High-A Greensboro, Jebb has quite a unique batting stance.

The left-handed-hitting Jebb gets into a deeply crouched position with his bat facing the pitcher. It resembles the stance of Hall of Famer Rod Carew but with an exaggerated crouch.

The stance is so different that it would seem Jebb must have tinkered a lot to reach that point. Instead, it is quite the opposite. Jebb’s stance just happened.

“It’s definitely a little unorthodox,” Jebb said with a smile. “I’m not a big thinker when I get into the box. I’m more so trying to hit under feelings, and I go what feels good and (the stance) just feels right. It just feels natural to me.”

Jebb, 21, is off to a slow start at Greensboro, hitting .238/.319/.238 through 10 games with Greensboro this season. Selected in the second round of last year’s amateur draft from Michigan State, Jebb debuted by posting a .297/.382/.398 slash line in 34 games with Low-A Bradenton.

Jebb had a .327 career batting average and .413 on-base percentage in 147 games at Michigan State with 82 walks and 68 strikeouts. His ability to get on base and play both middle infield positions made him attractive to the Pirates.

What sets Jebb apart, though, is his ability to make consistent contact. He is the antithesis of the modern-day three true outcomes player who seemingly walks, strikes out or hits a home run.

Jebb has struck out 27 times in 200 professional plate appearances while drawing 22 walks and hitting only one homer.

Jebb credited former major-league outfielder Adam Eaton for helping him hone his plate approach. Eaton joined the Michigan State coaching staff last year after spending 10 seasons as a major-league outfielder from 2012-21,

“No one really taught me,” Jebb said of his contact-heavy approach to hitting. “Just to have that reinforcement (from Eaton) that it’s the right thing to do was good feedback coming from a guy who did it for a very long time. He said he did the same thing. I think I’m on the right track. Nobody ever told me to do this, but I think I’m in a good spot.”

Jebb has played 24 games as a shortstop and 22 at second base in his fledgling career. Some scouts feel he has the speed and athletic ability to play center field if the middle infield doesn’t work out.

Last season was certainly a learning experience for Jebb as he adjusted to pro ball. He is looking to take what he learned in 2023 and use it to his advantage this season, primarily how to prepare for the grind of playing every day as there are much fewer off days in the minor leagues than on the college schedule.

“The big thing is just locking into a good routine, just so that you’re healthy and ready to go every single day,” Jebb said. “You have to be able to recover for the next day and then the next day after that. If you kind of let it snowball on you, it affects you at the end, That’s kind of the biggest thing I learned that recovering for the next day is a big aspect to it.”

John Perrotto is a columnist for Pittsburgh Baseball Now and has covered the Pittsburgh Pirates and MLB since 1988.

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