Jacoby McCabe Ellsbury was born on September 11, 1983, in Madras, Oregon (a small town on the east side of Mount Hood), and he and his three brothers grew up there. His father is a forester, working on the nearby Warm Springs Indian Reservation reservation; his mother, a full-blooded Navajo from Arizona, teaches children in special education classes there. The Warm Springs Indian Reservation is home not to Navajo but to the Warm Springs, Wasco and Paiute Tribes.
Jacoby is officially registered as a member of the Colorado River Indians Tribe, with most of its people living on the Colorado River reservation, which straddles Arizona and California.
PersonalJacoby’s family on his mother’s side is full-blooded Navajo. His grandmother, Alice, was a rug weaver. His grandfather was Franklin McCabe (the surname arbitrarily assigned by the U.G. government officials to replace his Indian name, as was the custom of the time) was a silversmith.
Franklin and Alice had 15 children. Marjorie - Margie - Jacoby’s mother, was the 10th child. At age 8, Margie began attending a Mormon school in Utah, returning home to the reservation in Arizona during the summer.
Grown to womanhood, she met and married Jim Ellsbury, a non-Native American (he’s of English and German descent) who works for the Bureau of Indian Affairs as a forester. They got married in Parker, Arizona in 1983. The Ellsburys moved to Madras, Oregon near the Warm Springs Reservation, where Jim Ellsbury was transferred.
ChildhoodWhen Jacoby was 12, his grandmother became ill, and his mother returned to her home on the Colorado River reservation in Arizona to be with her - bringing along Jacoby and his three brothers - Matt, Tyler and Spencer. They would stay on the reservation for a year.
During this year, Jacoby played Little League, and caught the attention of Packy Sevada, who along with his brother Bruiser were coaches in the league.
A year later the family returned to Madras, where Jacoby attended Madras High School and was a four-sport athlete: track, football, basketball and baseball.
During his senior year in High School the Tampa Bay Devil Rays drafted him, but he turned them down and attended Oregon State University, where he was a star on the baseball team, and majored in Business Communication.
BaseballSubsequently, Jacoby was drafted by the Boston Red Sox. He came up through the ranks of their farm teams - the Lowell Spinners in 2005, the Portland Sea Dogs in 2006, the Pawtucket Red Sox in 2007, and finally to the major leagues at the end of that year, called up when CoCo Crisp went on the disabled list.
Jacoby was a major part of the Boston Red Sox run for the Championship in 2007. Despite the fact that he came up at the end of 2007, he still qualifies as a rookie in 2008. After a slow start, and after resuming the wear of a single red sleeve on his left arm (which he had done last year, but not at the beginning of the 2008 season) he has caught fire and has already set the Rookie Steals record for the Boston Red Sox.