Jake Johansen: Another Power Arm For The Nats
For starters, Johansen was born and raised in Allen, Texas (about 30 miles north of Dallas). After a promising high school career, the New York Mets drafted the now 6’6” 235 lb right-hander in 45th round after his senior season in 2009. He ultimately decided to forgo an MLB career stating, “how important development is”. His four years at Dallas Baptist University turned in some mixed results. While his earned run average was north of five as a starter for the Patriots, he was drafted after his junior season in 2012 (Pittsburgh Pirates 27th round pick) and again as a senior in 2013; a contract he accepted. Johansen became the 68th overall pick in the 2013 MLB June Amateur Draft; the Washington Nationals first pick in the said draft. The Nats saw a major league frame, a blazing mid-90’s fastball, and the type of kid who would do whatever it takes to help out the organization.
Johansen started his professional career in short-season Auburn baffling hitters en route to a 1.06 ERA and 44 punch outs over 42 1/3 innings. He was then promoted to Low-A Hagerstown where he struggled a little. He ended 2013 on a great note giving up 2 runs in 4 2/3 innings in his final start. When asking him about his major league experience so far, the 22 year old lit up with excitement. He is both “honored to be mentioned” among the pitching-rich Nationals organization and comfortable with their plan to “keep him in the starting rotation”.
This offseason he has continued to train hard, develop his secondary stuff(curve and change-up), and refine his cutter, which he specifies as “a bad or weak contact pitch…not a strike out pitch.”
When he is not on the diamond, he loves doing a variety of things. He listens to music“all day, every day” and his taste varies from country to dubstep. He spends a lot of time on Netflix and he is a huge fan of The Walking Dead, Dexter, and Arrested Development.
Whether he is on or off the field, Jake Johansen is a guy who exudes happiness and a positive attitude. He clearly loves life and his career very much stating that when it comes to 2014, “I just want to get out there and play.”