NORFOLK (WAVY) — Life in the minor league’s can be a grind. There are few days off, there’s a lot of traveling by bus and there is time away from family.
So when the Scranton-Wilkes Barre Rail Riders were at Harbor Park last month for a series against the Tides, it was a welcome trip for Scranton’s Jake Cave who is from Hampton, and he had a big cheering section.
“I think the Tides are getting mad at me,” Cave joked. “I left about 30 tickets so there’s a section with a bunch of people, they’re probably the only ones cheering for me.”
Jake Cave is 24-years-old, he was a standout at Kecoughtan High School and had a scholarship offer at LSU. After after being drafted in the 6th round by the New York Yankees, Cave decided to forgo college and turn pro.
Now playing for the Yankees Triple A team in Scranton, Cave is a phone call away from the major leagues.
“Hopefully I’m close, I’m in Triple A, I’m playing well, but that is just one of those things that you can’t control,” Cave said. You can only worry about what you can control and what I can control is, I can go out there and play hard every single day.”
Cave is having a breakout season. He was July’s International League Player of the Month and he’s batting .351. The Yankees have a crowded outfield, but Cave is hoping his numbers support a call-up to play in New York.
“I want to get up there and play in the Bronx. I want to play under the lights in front of a packed house. I want to go on the road and have people boo me, that’s the kind of thing that helps you compete.”
And getting the big league call would not only fulfill a lifetime dream, that big league money would come in handy now that Cave and his girlfriend are the parents of a two month old daughter.
“I go out there everyday and I know that I have someone else to play for, I’ve got to provide, I want to go out there and be able to tell her friends when she’s growing up that her daddy is a big league baseball player, I want her to look up to me as somebody that does things the right way.”