Freshman Jake Rizzo follows in his cousin’s footsteps and dominates on the baseball field


Gabriel Jardine

Outfielder Jake Rizzo (22) tosses a baseball in front of the Anthony Rizzo Field. MSD’s baseball field is named after J. Rizzo’s cousin and MSD alumni, Anthony Rizzo, who is a current first baseman for the New York Yankees.

Freshman Jake Rizzo steps up to the plate and steps into high expectations on the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School junior varsity baseball team. The catcher and outfielder has a big legacy to live up to, being the cousin of MSD alumni and New York Yankees star Anthony Rizzo.

Rizzo stepped into the spotlight during the junior varsity team’s double-header on Saturday, March 4, against rival J.P. Taravella High School Trojans. Over the course of the two games, Rizzo went 5-6 with four home runs and a double. He drove in 11 RBI’s, heavily contributing to the teams 7-1 and 14-2 victories over the Trojans.

“It felt amazing to contribute to the team in such a big way,” Rizzo said.

Rizzo’s consistency and accomplishments are the result of the hard work that Rizzo puts in to be the player that he is.

“I train every day and push myself to keep getting better,” Rizzo said.

His performance on March 4 that launched Rizzo into the spring season. His batting ability is seen as a major contribution to the MSD baseball program, especially with the progra, coming off two consecutive national championships and looking for continuing their successes.

Rizzo’s contribution was highly anticipated, especially as a highly scouted player. Rizzo has earned a grade of nine out of ten from Perfect Game. According to PG, a grade of nine is defined as a “potential top 10 round pick and/or highest level college prospect.” Rizzo is among multiple additions from the class of 2026 that will see a lot of playing time in order to assimilate within the program and build upon pre-established skills.

“I think it definitely puts eyes on me and has coaches notice me more.” Rizzo said.

Anthony Rizzo, who was drafted by the Boston Red Sox in 2014 after attending MSD, has succeeded in the MLB. A. Rizzo has been with three MLB franchises, including the Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs and New York Yankees, and earned a World Series title in 2016. Living up to the name is quite a challenge, but many teammates, coaches and fans believe Jake has stepped up.

“I’m hoping that I can be a varsity player by the end of the season and help fight for another championship,” Rizzo said.

Only being a freshman, he has a lot of room to grow over the next few seasons. Rizzo hopes to develop into yet another elite player to come out of MSD’s succeeding baseball program.