Jul 24, 2009
For a lot of Major League Baseball players, their fourth year in the league proves to be their breakout year. It's hard to say whether that statement holds true for ballhawks, but it certainly is the case for Pittsburgh ballhawk Erik Jabs. Starting his career with just 5 balls in 2006, he snagged a few more (33) in 2007, broke triple-digits in 2008 (128), and now in his fourth year has snagged a staggering 238 balls. In what can easily be described as a breakout year, he is averaging 4.86 Balls Per Game, more than double his average in 2008.
Jabs has surpassed double-digits 3 times this season - June 13 at PNC Park (13 Balls), May 5 at PNC Park (10 Balls), and April 21 at PNC Park (11 Balls). Overall, he has snagged just about everything that has found its way into the left field bleachers at PNC Park, totaling 113 balls in that location alone. Perhaps his most impressive statistic of the season is his 124 batted balls, which blows away most of the competition.
In addition to his personal accolades, Jabs has organized a Ballhawk League that includes over 20 ballhawks from all over the country. Standings and statistics are published to his blog weekly. Currently he is in 2nd place in the season standings, trailing Zack Hample by 72 balls. He has a comfortable lead in the batted balls category, leading the nearest competitor by over 20 balls.