Baseball coach inspiring future big leaguers at Sasquatch Built in West Linn
WEST LINN, Ore. (KPTV) – Mark Nelsen said we could “stick a fork” in winter, so it’s time to rattle the bats and oil up the gloves for the upcoming baseball season.
Spring training is underway at Sasquatch Built in West Linn, the place big leaguers have been groomed to make it all the way to the big show.
While the walls start to cave in on winter, coach Scott Ackerman brings the heat and the hype.
“Some people think I am a little bit crazy, but I am, so it is what it is,” he said.
It’s easy to be a ball of positivity doing a job you love.
“You’ve got to have a mindset. You have got to be able to compete, so you’ve got to have that mental confidence that helps you compete, right? Then, you have to have the work ethic because nothing in this life supports a lazy person,” Ackerman said.
Get up, get out – encourage, inspire, and motivate.
“The secret sauce here, we really promote, make your buddy better. Make your teammate better. Get somebody better out there,” Ackerman said.
Ackerman was the state player of the year from Oregon City High in 1997 when he was drafted in the sixth round by the Montreal Expos.
“What an awesome community, man. I had amazing coaches, and that’s why I do it. I can get emotional about coaches that I had,” Ackerman said.
The OCHS Pioneer Hall of Famer made it to up to Triple-A before the catcher returned home where he was a prep head coach in Colton and Canby before the call of the Sasquatch.
“Meeting Scott, it was so much more than just training. He teaches me life lessons and how to give back to my game,” Wilsonville High School sophomore Maddie Erickson.
The big league Sasquatch disciple is Carson Kelly. The Westview High grad is coming off a career-year behind the plate with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Kelly’s younger brother, former Oregon Ducks pitcher Parker Kelly, is off to spring training No. 2 with the St. Louis Cardinals organization.
“We leave for six months, go play, come back and there is always something new and we get to come in and use it all and be here around the kids as they hopefully get to follow along in the path that we are going on and then hopefully do better things than us,” he said.
One of those kids looking to be better is Jesuit senior and Oregon State commit, Mick Abel, who is a likely upper first round draft pick in June’s amateur draft.
“He just instills this whole mindset of, ‘Sasquatch nation,’” Abel said. “It’s like, kill or be killed. You’re going to die trying. You’re going to go kick some butt and just try as hard as you can while doing it.”
Safe at home by taking care of the mentals before the chicken.
“Scott has been a great influencer for baseball here in Oregon and hopefully we can keep spreading that to the kids here and around the country,” said Kelly.
Hope springs eternal, all year round at Sasquatch Built.
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