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'It’s an honor': No. 1 pick Jackson Holliday signs deal with Orioles, ready to embrace pressure

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Posted at 5:54 PM, Jul 27, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-27 18:45:03-04

BALTIMORE — Getting picked No. 1 overall, new Baltimore Oriole Jackson Holliday knows he is going to face pressure.

But he embraces it.

Holliday has been dealt with pressure his whole life, playing a sport and living in the shadow of his father – who was a World Series champion and seven-time Major League Baseball All-Star.

Holliday, who just finished high school, is a product out of Stillwater, Oklahoma. His father is Matt Holliday, a former pro standout with the Colorado Rockies and St. Louis Cardinals, among other teams.

MORE: Sons of All-Stars Holliday, Jones go 1-2 in MLB draft

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Had Jackson Holliday not immediately chosen the path of playing professionally, he said he would have played college baseball at home, at Oklahoma State.

Instead, Holliday, a shortstop, will chosen as the top overall selection in 2022, and the future of the Baltimore Orioles.

Holliday officially signed his MLB contract Wednesday afternoon at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. The deal is worth $8.19 million.

“It comes with some pressure but luckily enough, I have a good foundation in my family and I am going to handle it like I handle everything, play hard and workout and try to be the best player I can be,” Holliday said during his introductory press conference Wednesday.

No. 1 pick Jackson Holliday introduced by Orioles

Holliday will report to the Florida Complex League on Thursday.

The Orioles’ prospect will look to make an impact at shortstop, just like one beloved Cal Ripken Jr. did in Baltimore before Jackson Holliday was even born.

“It’s an honor to be in this organization and play a premiere position that he played for so long,” Jackson said.

Holliday met some of his future Orioles teammates on Wednesday, including catcher Adley Rutschman, who was the Orioles No. 1 draft pick in 2019.

Orioles prospect Jackson Holliday takes BP

He then took batting practice on the field for the first time.

“I’m very excited to start playing. It’s been a little bit since I have gotten to compete on the baseball field,” Holliday said. “I’m very excited to get going and I am looking forward to start competing.”

Holliday told members of the media that his goal is to be in the major leagues in no more than two years.

“I want to be up here as fast as possible, so I would love to come out hot and continue to play well so hopefully, two years or less, would be my goal,” Holliday said. “I know that is a big goal but I can do it.”

Holliday, a left-handed hitter, is 6-foot-1 and 175 pounds — quite a bit smaller than his 6-foot-4, 240-pound father. He hit .685 and with 89 hits in 41 games and broke a national record for hits in a high school season that had been held by J.T. Realmuto.