JACOBS HONORED BY CLARK GRIFFITH LEAGUE
July 26, 2007 —Coach Harry Marshall “Jake” Jacobs was as much a part of Washington area baseball as a bat or glove. His leadership and passion for the game was as an essential part of Clark C. Griffith Collegiate League play.
One of his key abilities as a coach was recognizing fundamentals and helping athletes learn them. One of his favorite teaching tools was telling anecdotes of past players. His passion for the game made him very competitive and willing to fight for the win in every game. Players remember him for his hustle out to the coach's box on the field and for encouraging them to play with fire.
His connection to the game was so strong that at his funeral in 2003, several former baseball players served as pallbearers and the organist played “Take Me Out To The Ballgame.”
Even though he has passed away several years ago, his memory, and legacy will be a strong part of Clark Griffith League and Washington, D.C. baseball lore.
The Clark Griffith League is proud to honor legendary Washington area coach, Marshall “Jake” Jacobs by naming the annual post-season tournament after him. This season the Clark Griffith League will host the first annual Jacobs Cup Post-Season Tournament at Waters Field on July 27.
Jacobs was born on May 2, 1919—the year the Black Sox scandal rocked the National Pastime to its core. He grew up a couple blocks away from RFK Stadium, where the current Washington Nationals play. As a young man, he worked in the visitors' clubhouse and as a number-changer on the manual scoreboard at Griffin Stadium for the Washington Senators from 1933 to 1935, seeing such baseball greats as Babe Ruth and Connie Mack.
Jacobs, after a successful high school career in baseball and football in Washington D.C., had a brief stint in D-league baseball before joining the Navy to fight in the Pacific in World War II.
Before coming to Denis O'Connell High School, Jacobs coached at St. John's College High School in the 1960s. Jacobs first started managing the baseball team at Denis O'Connell High School in 1978. Because of his tremendous work as a coach at the school, the baseball field at O'Connell High was named after him. The field was dedicated on May 11, 1991.
He began working with the Clark Griffith League in the 1970s. Jacobs managed the Rangers in the late 1970s and early 1980s. He led the Rangers to a league title in 1982. He also went with the Reston Raiders, who were Clark Griffith League champions in 1983, 1984 and 1985, to the AAABA national tournament in Johnstown , PA as an assistant coach to Raiders manager Chuck Faris. Jacobs became a full time coach with the Raiders in 1986 and worked with the team until 1994, and he went to Johnstown, Pa. with Chuck Faris during that time as well.
He began work with the Arlington Senators in the 1990s. From 1995 to 2000, he was the first base coach for the Senators and later became the club's bench coach. He was a part of the team when they went on a stretch of winning four All-American Amateur Baseball Association National Baseball Championships from 1997 to 2002. As a tribute to his contributions to the Senators, the club retired his number in 2002. No other Senators player will bear No. 1 on his back.
Jacob's longstanding work with baseball at every level of play from sandlot ball to national summer collegiate baseball tournaments has allowed him to touch the lives and careers of countless baseball players.
Before he passed away in 2003, Jacobs was inducted into the All-American Amateur Baseball Association Hall of Fame for his work with baseball. He was also inducted into the Washington Home Plate Club Hall of Fame and was a recipient of the Home Plate Club Lifetime Achievement Award.
In his eulogy for Jacobs, Vienna Senators president Bill McGillicuddy said that, “Jake coaching baseball was Jake playing baseball. No one would argue that Jake was as much a part of any game he coached as was any player—maybe more so, because, in a sense, Jake was playing all nine positions at once.”
McGillicuddy explained that a part of Jacobs lived in each player on his team. With so many former players still in the area and in the Clark Griffith League, that passion still thrives.
The Clark Griffith League is proud to name the Jacobs Cup Post Season Tournament after Coach Jacobs and hope that his spirit, passion, fire and memory continues to be a part of Clark Griffith League traditions.
For more information, please go to www.ClarkGriffithBaseball.com or contact the public relations intern, Kristin Pratt, at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (703) 401-6416