Jones is on a hot streak for the Warrior baseball team, having homered and knocked in plenty of runs via extra-base hits on a stacked West Orange offense.
When did you start playing baseball?
When I was 4 – I started really young. My whole life, my family got me into it.
What has made you keep playing?
Most of my teams over the years. I've played with all these guys since I was probably 8 years old. They're my best friends, so I've never wanted to let them down or quit, because I've always loved those guys. They're like my brothers.
Why do you think you're on such a tear lately?
I just have been trying to stay up the middle a lot. Our coaches just think up the middle; not try to do too much; hit the ball hard when you get up there. If you get out, you get out. As long as you put a barrel on the ball, you did your job.
What is it like to hit in a packed lineup with protection?
Definitely it's really good. For our four hole, (Nathan Schreckengost) leads us in home runs and stuff, but I think it's good for him that I'm backing him up. If they pitch around him, they're not going to get anything easier, and then same with me. Deandre (Shelton), he's hitting almost .400, so it's protection for me – you know they're going to come right at (me), because if they just put (me) on, that's another potential run, because the guys behind me can swing it just as well.
Do you have a favorite MLB player or team?
Player is probably Pablo Sandoval. I don't really have a favorite team. I just try to kind of model my game after him. I played third my whole life until this year, so I've always liked the way he played.
What makes third base your position?
I just grew up playing there. This year, I switched – I'm playing left because that's what the team needed – but I think I'm supposed to play third at the next level. It suits my abilities best, I think.
How did you end up picking Flagler College?
It was kind of a long process. I talked to a lot of schools, but just the coaches there, they're the nicest guys, and I have a couple of teammates from here last year that are there now – two of them went there. The facilities are really nice – they just turfed their field – and I just really liked it. It's a good area.
What do you think of jumping into college with familiar teammates?
I think that's really comforting, knowing you're not going to go there alone or anything. They're going to take you under their wing and help you. Alec (Larue) going with me, he's literally my best friend since I was 5 years old. It's going to be awesome: I'm going to room with him, and if we're ever struggling, we're always going to be there to help each other out, so you know you're not going to be lost or anything.
Have you thought about what you will study?
I think business administration, just general now, but I might actually change my major to criminal justice because my uncle's in the Secret Service. It's something I wouldn't mind doing, and he told me he could definitely help me get in it, so I might think about that.
What is a chore you mind the least?
I don't know, probably doing the dishes. I do them for my mom, so it helps her. If it helps her and makes her happy, then it's good for me.
Contact Zak Kerr at [email protected].