Jake Smolinski graduated from Boylan Central Catholic in 2007, and was drafted in the 2nd round of the MLB Draft. He spent time in the Nationals, Marlins, and Rangers organizations before landing on his feet with the Oakland A's this season on a waiver claim.
He hit two home runs in his fourth game with the Athletics, and hit two more this week against the White Sox in Chicago. He's eager to make the most of his Major League opportunity while representing his Northern Illinois hometown.
"Rockford is where I call home. It's fun to be here, close by, this is the closest I've ever been to play since I've been in pro ball. It's cool to represent Illinois and Rockford, and I'm excited. It's definitely some of my best memories. The teams and the guys we had at Boylan were pretty special. Looking back at it, I didn't realize at the time how fun it really was. It's a great school, it's a great program, a lot of good times there. Nice to see some of those people here supporting me throughout this, it's been good."
Smolinski will continue to see playing time in Oakland's outfield with 15 games left in the 2015 regular season.