Arizona outfielder Jasmine Perezchica has baseball in her in blood, and it’s a huge reason why she ended up on the path to playing softball.
Her dad, Tony Perezchica, was drafted in the third round of the 1984 MLB Draft. He had a relatively short career in the majors, playing from 1988 to 1992. He played shortstop, second base and third base.
He also got into coaching in 1997 when he started working for a handful of different minor league teams. He got his shot in the major leagues when he joined the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2016 as the third-base coach.
Jasmine elaborated about her experience growing up around baseball, when she said, “My dad is my biggest supporter, and I thank him for really everything I know today. It was a really cool experience growing up around all these amazing people, famous people, and just learning from the best, so it was a lot of fun.”
She was a highly-sought softball recruit, with some publications ranking her as high as No. 10 coming out of Palm Desert High School in La Quinta, Calif.
She picked Arizona “because of the tradition and the coaching staff is unmatched,” she said.
In a 2018 article in the Palm Springs Desert Sun, the elder Perezchica discussed the development of his daughter which was so impressive that she committed to Mike Candrea’s program when she was in the eighth grade.
“I’m very proud of what she’s doing,” Tony told the Desert Sun. “And there is talent there. Having worked in player development in the Yankee organization before working with the Diamondbacks – you’re working with these young guys and trying to get better.
“And I think that’s a way I’ve been able to help her. When I watch her play, I sometimes shake my head and laugh. She does things that — all these young guys that I’ve worked with for many years on these things — she has some of these same attributes.”
When Jasmine signed her national letter of intent with Arizona in November 2019, Candrea mentioned, “I feel very good about Jasmine and what she’s going to bring to our program.”
“She’s your typical leadoff hitter,” he said. “Great tools, great bat control, above average speed and very competitive.”
In her freshman season, she saw action in 31 games, and was in left field for five of them.
At the plate, she had three hits and drew one walk. She also stole two total bases.
Those numbers have already started to improve this season, where she has four RBIs and seven hits through the first games.
Arizona (3-1) will host the Hillenbrand Invitational starting this Friday with a game against UC Santa Barbara at 3 p.m. and against Kentucky at 5.
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Jake Faigus, a Phoenix native, is a senior at the University of Arizona majoring in journalism and minoring in sports management. He also has written for the student newspaper, The Daily Wildcat, as well as the Arizona Fansided blog, Zona Zealots. Jake is also the stepson of former University of Arizona football player Heath Bray, a member of the famed Desert Swarm defense in the early 1990s.