Former Marlington High School and Kent State University standout pitcher Jim Farrell was one good break away from landing on the mound at Fenway Park after posting a 14-win season at the Red Sox’s Class AAA team in Pawtucket in 1998. Instead, it was a bad break that short-circuited the right-handed pitcher’s professional career, limiting Farrell to 73 innings over the next 3 seasons and ultimately leading to his retirement from professional baseball after 6 seasons.
He began his outstanding career by helping Marlboro teams win Hot Stove Baseball state championships in I League, H League and G League. He was a mainstay on the Manchester A’s state championship teams in 14u, 15u, 16u and 17u. After earning All-Ohio honors as a shortstop and pitcher for Marlington High School from 1989-1992, Farrell received a scholarship to play at Kent State University.
After a stellar 3-year career with the Golden Flashes in which he helped to lead KSU to 2 Mid-American Conference championships, Farrell was drafted in the 40th round of the 1995 amateur draft by the Boston Red Sox. Farrell consistently climbed the ladder in the Red Sox chain, advancing to Pawtucket at the end of the 1997 season as a reward for posting a 12-7 record with Trenton in the AA Eastern League.
Farrell reached what would be the apex of his professional career in 1998 when he recorded a 14-8 record and 5.51 ERA. He struck out 142 and walked 52 in 163.1 innings. He was named the Red Sox’s Class AAA Pitcher of the Year for his performance. He spent parts of the 1999 and 2000 seasons in Fort Myers on injury rehab and had limited time with Trenton and Pawtucket before leaving the game in 2001. Farrell has been head baseball coach at Cuyahoga Falls High School since 2006.