DUNEDIN, FL – It hasn’t been since Randy Johnson’s “sea of feathers” incident that birds and baseball went hand in hand.
Ian Kadish is carving it up in both the Twitter world, home of the little blue bird, and on the mound at the Bobby Mattick Training Center, where he’s a Toronto Blue Jays prospect.
After going undrafted out of Marshall University, the right-handed reliever has only the goals of the organization that gave him a chance at heart.
“I had a good year last year, there’re always things to improve upon as far as goals for this upcoming year,” he said, in the cool of the shade, following a series of 300-yard shuttle runs.
“I always put the team first so whatever team I’m on I like to win for the team first, and then personal goals come after. I’m working on repeating pitches and trying to better myself while keeping the relationships good with the pitchers, coaches, and staff as well.”
He may also, as he suggests, have a slightly unhealthy Twitter obsession, but he puts it to good use by combining his humour and positivity to promote his “sellout” philosophy.
“I think 75 per cent of my tweets are about selling out to the process or buying in to the lifestyle,” he says. “The typical meaning of it is not the way I use it.”
In order to get what he wants, Kadish is going to put everything he has on the table.
“In baseball it is a process to get to the ultimate goal, so by selling out you are buying in, and to me, those two sayings are related. Work at it and put everything you have into it to achieve your ultimate goal.”
His Twitter bio boasts his work ethic reading, “Chasing a childhood dream and Selling out to get there! Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard! #sellout”.
The Cincinnati, Ohio native is looking to build off his promotion last year to the Lansing Lugnuts, and he thinks the Blue Jays organization is a great place to nurture the positive mentality that is so important to a pitcher’s success.
“Something that is a great aspect of the organization,” said Kadish, on what he likes best about the staff.
“Is that they let everybody be their own individual. There’s a lot of positive reinforcement, and I’ve always been under the impression that positive reinforcement helps brings positive results, so their positivity is a real advantage I think they have.
“They treat everybody the same and give everyone the same opportunity, that’s all I ask for.”
Personable athletes have since created a niche for themselves in the sports world since the dawn of twitter.
From avid tweeters from Paul Bissonnette to Travis Snider, it’s clear that in this day and age a reputation can precede an athlete, sometimes even make a great athlete more noticeable.
“Even people around the complex call me by my twitter name. I don’t mind, it’s funny. If you’ve seen the movie, my twitter name kind of describes me and my personality. I love twitter it’s the first thing I check in the morning, it’s probably almost sick how much I like twitter.”