Jake Marshall is waiting and hoping, but he’s not overly optimistic about continuing his professional minor-league baseball career.
The Yorktown High School graduate played the majority of last summer for the Napa Silveradoes in Napa, Calif., an independent team in the Pacific Association. He belted two home runs, drove in 14 runs and had a .978 fielding percentage.
The catcher has a roster spot on that team again for the 2020 campaign, which is on hold and may never begin because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The league is in a holding pattern right now,” Marshall said. “It would be awesome to go back to Napa. But if that doesn’t happen this year, it probably will be time for me to move on from playing baseball.”
Marshall, 25, has played in independent leagues for a couple of years. The switch-hitting catcher with strong defensive skills was a member of the High Desert Yard Birds of the developmental Pecos League in 2018, batting .262 with a couple of homers and 15 RBI for the California team. In 2017, Marshall briefly played for a professional team in Australia.
His goal after high school and college was to play professional baseball, so he achieved what he wanted.
“Playing independent baseball is hard, because there is not a lot of money in that,” Marshall said. “Only a select crowd can do that.”
Marshall played at Potomac State College in Keyser, W.Va., then was a bullpen catcher at the University of West Virginia, where he graduated in 2017.
“I didn’t think my last game would be last summer, but if it’s over, this will be a good way to go out,” Marshall said. “I did not get hurt or released. I have no regrets and feel pleased about playing baseball. It’s time to move on and do something else.”
With his baseball career up in the air, Marshall has started his own construction company in Northern Virginia.