Jeffrey Coakley commits to Mansfield

Marco Squitieri

Senior shortstop Jeffrey Coakley has committed to Mansfield University to continue his baseball journey throughout college. Coakley generated interest from numerous schools before his commitment in late February. 

The connection between Coakley and Mansfield was quick and strong, with Coakley receiving his offer during his first official visit. Coakley received a positive impression from both coaches and players at Mansfield, remarking that “They showed me a lot of love.” While the strong interest he received from Mansfield played a large factor into Jefferey’s decision, a large push also came from someone very close to him.

One of the people Coakley credits most with assisting him through his recruitment process is his brother, Jerry Chavarria. Chavarria also played collegiate baseball at Mansfield, providing an even closer link between Jefferey and his future school. Coakley also gives credit to his entire family for the resources and belief they poured into his baseball career. 

Coakley began playing baseball early on when he was only six years old. He began with DC Dynasty, an organization dedicated to providing quality baseball instruction to youth throughout the district. Coakley has maintained his allegiance to DC Dynasty, playing for them to this day. Additionally, he also plays for Gatorball Academy along with Wilson. The hours dedicated to each of his teams sharpened Coakley’s skills tremendously and exemplify the dedication he brings to baseball.  

When the pandemic hit, it presented a major roadblock for all high school athletes. Coakley was no different, experiencing what he considers the toughest period during his recruitment process. With programs unable to travel, Coakley was halted from playing in front of college coaches and being scouted in a proper way. Despite facing extreme adversity, Coakley wasn’t deterred, stating “It hurts, but I had a plan b.” This meant constantly emailing coaches and schools, even sending them tape every day. “I just kept pushing,” Coakley explained, “I never stopped.” 

Since his commitment, work has not stopped for Coakley in the slightest. He continues to work on every facet of his game, from behind the plate to the field. Coakley has also been frequenting the weight room, looking to bulk up before jumping to the next level. A goal of his is to achieve a 400-pound squat before he reaches college, something he inches closer to every day after recently reaching the  375 pound mark.

Many different elements of baseball make it so special for Coakley. The overall thrill of competing against a pitcher, making plays in the field, and stealing a base are all important parts of the game for him. An equally important reason for Coakley’s love of the game stems from the connection he feels with his teammates, and the special moments and memories he has formed with them. While many components may go into his love of the game, Coakley sums it up by saying “It’s just fun to play baseball man, that’s all I gotta say.”