E.A. Sports Today

The wait is over

Cleburne County senior pitcher Jordan Brown waits out the weather to celebrate signing with Southern Union

Jordan Brown was 3-3 with a 2.63 ERA in 12 appearances last season. (File photo by Jonathan Fordham/J&E Art&Design)

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

HEFLIN – There was probably no one in Cleburne County who wanted a snow day less last week than Jordan Brown.

The Cleburne County senior pitcher-first baseman has long dreamed of playing college baseball and was all set to celebrate his signing with Southern Union on Friday when Mother Nature dumped a big pile of snow on his plans.

Now he had to wait through the whole weekend – and then an additional day Monday when school remained closed – before finally being able to declare Tuesday what he waited all his life to say.

“It was like your first time to pitch for a varsity baseball team,” Brown said. “You’ve got the anticipation building up to it and you’re excited to do it and then you have to wait. It was kind of bittersweet because, yeah, you get out of school (because of the snow), but I was ready to come in and do this.

“It was something I worked for a long, long time. I wanted to make this moment special. That’s something I dreamt of since I was a little kid – to be a college baseball player – and I finally got to live my dream out. It’s like my dreams are coming true right now.”

Brown also had interest from Snead State, LaGrange College and Covenant College, but fell for the Bison as soon as he stepped on campus for his visit and decided the JUCO route was the best way to go for his continued development.

“I feel like I need to strengthen my abilities and if I can go there I can get in the weight room really hard and focus on mainly baseball because they’re like a sports-oriented school,” he said. “That could help me to get my velocity up and experience in the college level that I could maybe go to somewhere bigger.”

Brown is the second Tigers pitcher to sign a college scholarship this winter. Trevor Houston signed with Wallace-Hanceville last month and together they are expected to give Cleburne County two solid starters this spring.

Brown was 3-3 with a 2.63 ERA and 1.425 WHIP last spring. He also led the Tigers in hitting with a .316 average, .505 slugging percentage and three homers, 25 RBIs and 11 extra base hits. One of his best games last year came against Lincoln when he homered and drove in six runs and struck out six in five innings on the mound.

He’s signing with Southern Union as a pitcher, to a staff that is expected to be deep already when he arrives, and will get an opportunity to hit in the middle of the lineup as a designated hitter.

Bison coach Jabo Jordan first saw the right-hander during a rough playoff outing against Etowah. But he followed him through the summer and watched his game pick up against several top-flight travel ball clubs.

“He’s got a good fastball, if it gets a little better he’ll be a power pitcher,” Jordan said. “He has good control, has good command and has good off-speed stuff. We’ve been knowing about him for two or three years and when we saw him this summer he added a pitch. We think he’s going to continue to get better because of his size and his strength.”

On the cover: Cleburne County pitcher Jordan Brown (R) shares a story with Tigers assistant coach Josh Perry (L) and Southern Union head coach Jabo Jordan Tuesday before formally announcing his signing with the Bison.

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