BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – After matching Tech’s
single-season home run record in 2009, A.J. Kirby-Jones has begun
to etch his name at the top of Tech’s career record book.
Kirby-Jones, a junior from Knoxville, hit five homers on the week,
passing Mark Maberry, Bobby Morgan, Steve Hawkins, Matt Ballard and
Jeremy Bonczynski to become Tech’s all-time career home runs
leader with 33.
Kirby-Jones hit .526 (10-for-19) for the week, and in addition to his five home runs he hit two doubles for a 1.421 slugging percentage. He also drew seven walks over the course of the week as the Golden Eagles went 4-2. Kirby-Jones was recognized by the Ohio Valley Conference as the Player of the Week for his efforts. The honor is A.J.’s first career OVC Player of the Week award.
In addition to owning Tech’s home run record, Kirby-Jones is on pace to set many other Tech career batting records. He currently ranks fourth in school history in RBIs and slugging percentage. His 140 RBIs are only 13 shy of Mark Maberry’s all-time school record of 153, and his .638 career slugging percentage is 48 points below Bonczynski’s all-time mark of .686. Kirby-Jones ranks sixth in school history with 92 career walks, 42 behind Donley Canary’s record of 134. A.J.’s 210 career total bases rank 10th all-time, and with three more doubles he will rank 10th in school history.
So far this season Kirby-Jones has eight home runs, four doubles, and 21 RBIs. He is slugging .980 and his .408 batting average is third on the team. With 22 walks, his .585 on-base percentage is a team best.
The Golden Eagles will be back in action Tuesday evening when East Tennessee State visits Cookeville. Game time is set for 6 p.m. Tech will then visit Memphis for a three-game series March 19-21. Admission to all Tech home baseball games is free.