This week’s Wellness Wednesday is one of my favorites.
It really focuses on how the will to win is always there, regardless of the endless onslaught of naysayers that said/say it couldn’t have been done.
Every once in a while there’s those people who defy the odds and do something in a game that has never ever been done before.
I’ve been writing about the journey of Kazmir for almost 13 years. I can look back and say that all these ups and downs over his career have proven more than anyone could have ever imagined.
His career began in 2002 as a first-round pick (New York Mets; 15th overall) and eventually led the Tampa Bay Rays to their first postseason appearance in 2008. This was exactly what you expected from a guy who threw gas and was the ace of the squad.
At some point in everyone’s career, things can go off the rails and many hang it up. Kazmir did the opposite. He went to Indy Ball, and while the numbers didn’t exactly show the extent of what he was doing on the mound, he continued to perfect his craft and make people take notice.
The Sugar Land Skeeters, an Indy league team in the American Association when Kazmir took the mound for them in 2012, was the launching point. From there he once again became an All-Star (2014), appeared in the postseason (2015), and represented the United States in the 2020 Summer Olympics.
Even after four-ish years from his last professional win (2017), he suited up for the Eastern Reyes del Tigre of the independent Constellation Energy League earning the W (2020). Shortly thereafter, Kazmir took the mound for the San Francisco Giants, appearing in a MLB game for the first time in five years.
To athletes or anyone trying to prove something, this is not necessarily the blueprint, but one of the most inspiring sports stories in a long long time!