Gulfport Native and Yankees Pitcher Jonathan Holder Training at Alma Mater
Ever since getting called up to the Show back in September, life has escalated pretty quickly for New York Yankees pitcher Jonathan Holder. It wouldn’t appear that way on a day like today, just another afternoon spent back at his old stomping grounds of Gulfport High School.
Adam Jones meet Jonathan Holder. His first big league strikeout came against a five-time All-star. Ever since then life has been pretty awesome for the Gulfport native. “Definitely one of the more exciting times I’ve ever had in my life. They say getting married is the best day of your life. They also say getting called up is the best day in your life. So they were both great days and made for a really eventful year. (Which day was better?) Getting married, absolutely.”
But settling down wouldn’t be the right way to refer to Holder’s baseball career. Come Monday, the former Mississippi State Bulldog is heading to Tampa, Florida to start training for spring training which begins a month from Friday.
Until then, this southern boy is gonna soak up life in the slow lane. “There’s really no comparison. The way that it’s so fast-paced up there, but then you get back down here, South Mississippi, and everything kind of slows down. You can go fishing and get out off-road a little bit. But both places, to each his own. Some people love it,” said Holder.
Now that’s not to say Holder doesn’t love it. As a part of MSU’s College World Series runner-up team in 2013, the man that used to have much longer hair can’t get enough of the big stage. “One of the cooler games I’ve played in was in Fenway Park. The Boston-Yankee rivalry, it was cool. I’ve been in a few big rivalry games, that being the biggest, but Mississippi State-Ole Miss, brings me back to some great college experiences that I had.”
And before that maybe even Gulfport versus Harrison Central. At least that’s where it all started for Holder and eventually where it will end. “A little bit of hard work and good timing can really influence somebody’s career. I’ve enjoyed my time here in Gulfport and I love it and I plan on living here one day.”
Aside from vacationing and his honey moon, Holder says he’s been back home in Gulfport since October.