Mike Kennedy ‘22 has high expectations for the Flying Horses varsity baseball team heading into the spring season. Kennedy expects himself and his teammates to all be a step ahead once they are on the field.
Kennedy and his teammates have been preparing themselves at All-Stars Academy’s facilities in Latham. “I fully expect all of us to be ahead of the game once JV and Varsity start because we’re preaching that,” said Kennedy.
Although Kennedy along with his teammates didn’t get to play last year due to COVID, the team is young and he leads a roster that was successful in the 2019 season.
Kennedy was named First Team All-Suburban Council and led the Suburban Council in strikeouts at the age of 14. Kennedy is now 16 heading into his junior season. Consistency has been a key tribute to his success at a young age.
”There’s a certain routine and consistency in my days that have allowed me to do what I do,” said Kennedy. “When I wake up until when I go to bed I’m doing things that I need to do to get better.”
Last year a key focus for improving his routine was a focus on nutrition. Kennedy now also added an emphasis on sleep this year.
Kennedy joined CSMN podcast ‘The Section 2 Show’ on episode two and discussed his routine, recruiting process, and expectations heading into a season where all over the Capital Region there seem to be more questions than answers.
Kennedy committed to Louisiana State University (LSU) at age 14. When asked more about the timing of his decision he stated he has no regrets about his decision. “I talked to my family, I talked to everyone at All-Stars, and I made sure that LSU was my home,” said Kennedy.
Kennedy’s recruitment began to hit strides when he was 13 years old and attended an Amsterdam NY showcase and flashed somewhere around an 82 MPH fastball. The rest of the recruitment process is history.
Kennedy’s passion not only regarding his specific craft on the mound but towards the game, in general, is something that sticks out to a lot of people in the Capital Region and beyond.
A very clear mission was motivated by a letter from his uncle before passing away that encouraged Kennedy to stay on track to becoming his favorite professional pitcher. Kennedy brought this up in the interview when asked about his purpose and what he called his “why”.
Kennedy talked about what a successful legacy would look like for him. “Whatever God has planned for me, I’m going to fulfill that potential the best I can, that’s what a successful legacy is to me,” said Kennedy. “When you’re 30, 40, 50, 60 what are you going to be known for?”
Seeing so much success at a young age can get to the heads of many athletes at any level. Baseball has been deemed a sport full of failure and adversity is promised no matter what the skill level of a player may be.
“I would always try to be perfect, and you have to realize we’re human beings and perfection isn’t possible,” said Kennedy. Staying within himself will be a key for the young ace heading into the 2021 season.
At the same time, he wants to push his capabilities more than the average human. Kennedy talked about the 40% rule which states that humans tend to only fulfill 40% of their capabilities, Kennedy plans to break that, and I sure wouldn’t bet against him.
Having incredible talent is one thing, mixing that with maturity and not being complacent with your abilities is on another level. These characteristics along with Kennedy’s clear appreciation of the game are a scary sight for opponents in the box.
Kennedy also opened up about some of his techniques and spoke about his pitch arsenal. “I take concepts from old school baseball and try to mix it with all the new school stuff,” said Kennedy.
“I try to make the hitter as uncomfortable as possible.”. Having a consistent arm slot is another key focus. “If you can make everything look the same, you have a legitimate advantage against the hitter,” said Kennedy.
Kennedy’s changeup has been a crucial pitch for him up until this point, and it seems to be keeping that status. Playing for All-Stars Academy Elite has allowed him to face top-notch talent all over the country. Pitch sequencing and getting outs with all sorts of pitches become key when players are timing up his incredible fastball.
Kennedy dropped a very mysterious quote during the podcast stating, “It’s one game and we all try to accomplish the same thing.” Now, I can’t promise you this is what that means because for his age he has a lot more thoughts regarding the game of baseball than most.
But here’s my best guest; Troy High School baseball is looking to be the last team standing in 2021.