The 2022 MLB draft’s first overall pick Jackson Holliday comes from a family whose members made a career in baseball. As such, his parents, mainly his dad, directly impacted him as a kid, and he considers them his inspiration.
Jackson watched his dad play and achieve incredible Major League Baseball (MLB) feats.
As a frequent league match attendee, Jackson saw his four-time Silver Slugger Award winner dad lift the World Series championship trophy with the St. Louis Cardinals in 2011.
Besides that, Jackson grew up playing and discussing games with his grandfather, Tom, and uncle Josh, who are coaches and baseball experts.
So, as a kid growing up in an athletic environment, he had nothing but baseball in mind.
As they are originally from Oklahoma, Jackson Holliday spent his childhood there and attended Stillwater High, as everyone from his family did.
His athletic prowess from an early age had made it obvious that he was destined to make it big like his dad.
After his first season, the young talent committed to play for Oklahoma State University. However, the Baltimore Orioles picked him in the draft soon after school, so he skipped college.
The 19-year-old is already the recipient of numerous awards and accolades, including Central Oklahoma Defensive Player of the Year.
In 2021, he won the Gatorade Player of the Year, becoming the third member to achieve it, aside from his dad and uncle.
Jackson Holliday Parents: How Did They Meet?
Holliday’s dad, Matt Holliday, married his girlfriend Leslee on December 30, 2000.
At that time, Matt was a minor-league player and had already left his education to pursue his baseball career.
Leslee Ann Smith was born to her parents, Janice and Steve, on December 26, 1989.
Matt and Leslee first met on a blind date in Stillwater, Oklahoma, in 1999. One of Matt’s friends was dating a friend of Leslee’s, and he asked Matt to go on a double date for fun.
Matt had just returned to his hometown after spending a season with the Colorado Rockies following his draft selection, and Leslee was an undergraduate student at Oklahoma State University.
The future MLB star eventually decided to go, and he fell in love with her then and there.
After a year of dating, the couple married in a Christian ceremony in Oklahoma in the presence of their close friends and family members.
Matt And Leslee Have Four Kids Together
The Holliday couple has four children. Leslee gave birth to their oldest son, Jackson, on December 4, 2003.
Similarly, they welcomed their second son, Ethan, on February 23, 2007. Following his family tradition, Ethan wants to be a baseball player and is currently the top player in the class of 2025.
Their third child, a daughter named Gracyn, was born in 2009 in Oklahoma. And lastly, their youngest child and their third son, Reed Holliday, was born in 2013.
Jackson’s Dad, Matt, Is A Seven-Time MLB All-Star
Matthew Thomas Holliday, better known as Matt Holliday, played for four different teams in the MLB in his career spanning about fifteen years.
Of the fifteen seasons he appeared in the league, Holliday made it to the seven All-Star games.
Born as a younger son to his parents, Tom and Kathy, in Stillwater, he showed talent in baseball, football, and basketball as a kid.
As a result, he was a member of both football and baseball teams in high school.
His dad, Tom, a baseball coach at Oklahoma State, never told him to follow his line of work then.
However, his sons, Josh and Matt, often accompanied him to college during their free time, where they practised baseball.
Matt was named the Gatorade Player of the Year in football and baseball in his senior season.
He later chose baseball to move ahead and eventually became the MLB star after being selected in the seven round of the 1998 MLB draft.