For those who watch and play baseball, it’s the best time of the year. Jorsixt Jimenez, a freshman outfielder, standing at six feet tall and weighing one-hundred ninety pounds, is playing at an elite level for the Queens College men’s baseball team. After just coming to the United States of America a few years ago, it certainly seems like he has gotten comfortable, as he was named the East Coast Conference Rookie of the Year and was placed on the All-Conference First Team in his first season of collegiate baseball.
“I’ve been playing baseball since I was a little kid. Basically I, in [the] Dominican Republic, you are basically born with a bat on your hands. From a young age, I took it seriously. I started at the age of eight, nine, and that’s when like it became my goal to be like a professional baseball player,” Jimenez said. “I always got it on the mind, you know, every time that I play.”When asked what his support system was, Jimenez points out that, “I always think, you know like, you can be good, but you always need good people around. I got, thank God, I have a good family that’s always around me to lift me up when I’m down, and thank God I have friends, my girlfriend, my family is always there when I need it, you know.”
After moving to the United States, and before playing for the Knights, Jimenez played high school baseball at Veritas Academy in Flushing. He also played for a travel team called Astoria Storm. In Santiago, Dominican Republic, he played in a baseball academy called MB for four years since he was twelve years old.
Ever since Jimenez was a young child, he looked up to the former dynamic Dominican American MLB player Jose Reyes. Now? He looks up to Ronald Acuna Jr., a zestful Venezuelan twenty-five-year-old who currently plays for the Atlanta Braves in Major League Baseball. Acuna Jr. is one of the brightest stars in the MLB, currently second in the MLB in batting average. Another role model has been his uncle who has ‘always been an athlete and has always been around sports.’ It is because of his uncle that he started playing baseball, basketball, and other sports. His uncle used to play baseball in high school in the Dominican Republic.
When asked why he wanted to play for the Queens College Knights, Jimenez said, “Well, when I first heard about Queens College, it was like a program that I saw was competitive. I learned that the coaches were supportive and that if I came to Queens College, they would give their all to help me. That they would help me be the best version of myself on and off the field and as a student. Queens College was also close to my home. And academic wise, it was a good college. ”
On the Queens College baseball website, Jimenez is listed as an outfielder and pitcher. But, the website shows that he hasn’t made any appearances on the mound just yet. Jimenez stated that he pitched in high school for a little bit and that he hasn’t pitched this season because he was having some trouble with his arm in the beginning of the season.
“First, like, I think that it’s because I always put God first and I’m just trying to do, like, what I’ve been doing my entire life in practice,” Jimenez said. “I just try to have fun every day and enjoy the game of baseball. Baseball has made me who I am and it gave me so many amazing experiences that I want to keep enjoying, I just want to enjoy for the most part.”
One of the fun aspects of baseball is when a hitter or pitcher has someone play a song for them when they step onto the field. Jimenez has someone play a Dominican song or “Just Wanna Rock” by Lil Uzi Vert. He sometimes choses a Dominican song because he thinks it represents him as a person, as it is a part of his culture. He said he just wants to share a little bit of his culture with people so they know where he comes from. When someone hears the Dominican music, they know he is Dominican. He chose “Just Wanna Rock” because it’s fun. When he listens to it, he just wants to play and have fun on the field.
And have fun he did. As previously mentioned, he was both a First Team honoree in the conference, but he was named the Rookie of the Year; the second Knight to win it in the past two years, as Marc Cisco also won that award last season. Jimenez, however, has paved his own path as he ended the regular season leading the team in hits, RBIs, home runs, and total bases.
In the conference, he was third in batting average among players who played in 40 or more games, second in RBIs, and was top five in: on-base percentage, hits, doubles, home runs, and total bases. Needless to say, his Rookie of the Year honors was well-earned.
Jimenez and the Knights are set to face off against the St. Thomas Aquinas Spartans in the ECC playoffs on Thursday, May 11th — the day this newspaper’s layout was sent to the Printer, so the results of the game are unknown at the time of writing this. Regardless if the Knights ended up advancing in the playoffs or not, Jimenez proved himself capable of sticking with the best of them in the ECC.