“It’s my senior year and I’m giving it my all every at bat and every game. I’m really excited for what this season has to offer me and my team.”
Those words show the optimism surrounding Rougher catcher/pitcher Jarrett Crawford and his feelings when the 2023 Muskogee High baseball season started in March.
He started playing baseball when he was just a kid and although he’s played other sports along the way, he gave them all up when he got to high school to concentrate on baseball. A four-year starter, he’s the ideal kind of player to have on your team according to coach John Singler.
“Jarrett has been a coach’s dream the last four years,” said Singler. “He’s a hard worker, a great teammate and team leader. He’s our starting catcher and has also played a major role in our pitching rotation. I wish I had nine more like him.”
Last season Jarrett made the all-conference academic team and had a .975 fielding percentage. This year as a senior leader he realized the responsibility he had.
“I think the qualities that make a good leader include being someone who always lifts you up no matter what and brings you confidence. I think my strength as a leader and a player is always giving 110 percent and striving to be the best at my position for myself and my team.”
Growing up, Crawford had the perfect role model for his catching position in Yadier Molina. The veteran St. Louis Cardinals catcher spent 19 years with the Redbirds while winning nine Gold Gloves along the way before retiring at the end of last season.
Although catching is his main position, it’s on the mound where Jarrett says he has his best memory.
“Last season I was the starting pitcher against Stillwater at regionals and I struck out the leadoff hitter as a starter. Later, Jackson Holiday, who was the first overall major league draft pick last year, doubled off me but I picked him off second with an inside move.”
This year on the mound Crawford had a 2-1 record in seven appearances with a 2.60.
Crawford’s optimistic, hardworking approach this year helped the Roughers to the most wins they’ve had (13) in his four years in the program.