Former South Medford participant Jacob Melton was chosen national participant of the week. Photo courtesy of Oregon State University.

Few individuals are considered the very best within the nation — at something or for any size of time.

Jacob Melton now is aware of what it looks like.

The former South Medford baseball standout, a primary baseman and outfielder for Oregon State, was named the national participant of the week by each Collegiate Baseball and Perfect Game after scorching opposing pitchers final week.

Melton highlighted an 11-for-18 week with a three-home run recreation — together with a grand slam — towards Utah on Friday. It was the primary three-homer recreation for the Beavers in 20 years.

The honors have been introduced this week, as was recognition because the Pac-12 Conference participant of the week.

“That’s definitely really special,” stated Melton of the national acclaim. “It’s something I’ve been working hard for. That wasn’t really a goal of mine, per se, but I’m definitely doing the best I can to put myself in a good spot to be able to perform on the field, both mentally and physically.”

In the large recreation towards Utah, Melton was 4-for-5 and drove in seven runs in a 17-3 victory.

He had a pair two-homer video games in highschool, however had by no means gone deep thrice in a single contest.

“I was probably more surprised than most of the other people there,” he laughed.

The barrage was a part of a outstanding streak over 5 video games towards the Utes and Washington.

Melton, a 6-foot-3 sophomore, went 14-for-19 throughout that stretch. He cooled off on Saturday, going 0-for-3, then went 3-for-3 on Monday in a nonconference recreation towards Gonzaga.

Melton made a slight adjustment on the plate 1½ weeks in the past that allowed him to see the ball higher.

“I kind of just put all the pieces together that Friday night, and it was a pretty special day for me,” he stated.

Managing expectations after such a efficiency was the subsequent chore, and one thing he and a coach mentioned on Wednesday.

“My big thing that I’ve been using this year to handle success and failure has just been falling back on my work that I put in in the offseason,” stated Melton. “I put in a crazy amount of hours in the (batting) cage, so that really helps me humble myself through the success and through the failures. I know that whatever comes out of every game was meant to be because I put myself in the best position that I could for every game.”

Melton leads the Pac-12 Conference in hitting heading into the Beavers’ three-game weekend collection at Oregon. The first recreation is at 5:45 p.m. in the present day.

OSU tops the Pac-12 with a 7-2 report and is 21-7 general. They dropped two of three in a collection towards the Ducks (16-7, 3-3 Pac-12) in mid-March.

The Beavers are ranked thirteenth by Collegiate Baseball, and Oregon is twentieth.

Melton is batting .469 for the season, with 30 hits in 64 at-bats. Despite beginning solely 16 of the 23 video games he’s performed in, he’s tied for third among the many Beavers with 4 residence runs and has pushed in 17 runs.

“Honestly, all the numbers and stuff, it’s pretty hard not to see them,” stated Melton, “but for me, it’s kind of just not putting too much emphasis on them and going out and playing the next game the same way you played the last game.”

He famous, for example, the 0-for recreation a day after his monster efficiency.

“It’s kind of what you expect with baseball,” stated Melton. “It’s a game of ups and downs. The people that handle the roller coaster the best often end the season with the best numbers.”

Melton, a 2018 South Medford graduate, was a two-time first-team all-state participant for the Panthers earlier than heading to Linn-Benton Community College in Albany.

As a freshman for the Roadrunners, he was first-team all-Northwest Conference and a Gold Glove winner.

He batted .365 with 14 doubles, seven triples, three residence runs, 39 RBIs and 16 stolen bases for LBCC.

That season earned him a spot at Oregon State, and though he solely began three video games and performed in seven of the Beavers’ 14 video games final spring earlier than the season was halted due to COVID-19, it was a priceless indoctrination because it ready him for this yr.

“I had an idea of what to expect,” stated Melton. “I figured I’d be stepping into the same role I had last year, but I’ve made the most of my opportunities so far and I’ve found myself in the lineup more often than I did last year. I think that experience last year was really big for me. It kind of got my foot in the door.”

The transfer to first base was sudden. A month earlier than this season, the coaches requested if he had performed the place, and he advised them he had at South Medford.

“I’ve been over there quite a bit this year,” stated Melton, “so hopefully that’s where I’m going to stick. I kind of like it over there.”

With Oregon on deck, the Beaver gamers have had a bit extra power, a bit extra pep of their step, stated Melton.

“As much as you don’t want to make any one game or one series mean more than any other, it’s definitely a different feeling,” he stated.

In the earlier collection, Oregon captured the primary two video games, 7-0 and 3-0, earlier than OSU received the third, 3-1. Melton was 1-for-3 in every of the primary two and didn’t play within the third.

In the final seven full seasons, the Beavers have completed third or higher within the Pac-12 annually, with three championships.

In 2018, they made their seventh look within the College World Series and received their third national title. The different two crowns have been in 2006 and ‘07.

Melton believes OSU is able to making one other cost within the postseason.

“I don’t think we’ve seen the full potential for this team yet,” he stated. “I think we’re still trying to figure a lot of stuff out as a team. We’re still trying to get everyone to come together and work together the way we know we can. I think if all those pieces fall together, we could end up making a pretty good run this year.”

Reach sports activities editor Tim Trower at 541-776-4479 or [email protected]

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