Jackson close, but not ready for Majors yet

Jackson close, but not ready for Majors yet

Jackson close, but not ready for Majors yet
CHICAGO -- Brett Jackson is close to being Major League ready, but he still needs time to develop in the Minor Leagues, manager Dale Sveum said.

With the Cubs trading Marlon Byrd to the Red Sox, there naturally is speculation that Jackson, Chicago's No. 1 pick in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, would get called up. Not yet, Sveum said.

"It's just the plan we want to stick with and develop him," Sveum said Sunday. "He still needs to develop. He's still striking out a little too much. He needs to be more conscious and a little bit better in that situation. If you're striking out that much in Triple-A, it'll be that much more against big league pitching.

"Until you get those 500 at-bats at Triple-A, it's something the organization and Theo [Epstein] want to impress on our young guys, is [that] 'You'll stay and play and develop.'"

Epstein, the Cubs' president of baseball operations, has made it clear he wants young players to get their work in the Minor Leagues. Jackson began this season with 1,133 total Minor League at-bats, including 185 at Triple-A Iowa.

"I think sometimes we rush kids too quick and it's not for anybody's benefit," Sveum said. "We've all been part of when kids have been rushed and they've done really well, but it doesn't happen very often."

In 16 games this year with Iowa, Jackson, 23, was batting .254 with a team-leading 21 strikeouts.