Sports fans have all been there at some point, young and dreaming of playing professionally someday, Alex Kaminsky is making that dream a reality.
Kaminsky, a four-year letter winner and All-District pitcher for Fostoria High School as a senior in 2006, is making his way in the independent leagues with success that most of us have only accomplished in video games.
“It's pretty awesome I can say I get paid to throw a baseball. Not many people can say that. I'm very fortunate I've had the opportunity to do so,” Kaminsky said.
The road hasn’t always been awesome however for the Lake Erie Crushers’ starting pitcher who’s 1-1 in three starts with a 6.75 ERA so far this season.
After a stellar High School career with the Redmen that included a school-record 24 team wins in 2005, Kaminsky didn’t quite get the attention he thought he deserved.
“I was highly over looked coming out of [High School]. A lot of D-2 and D-3 schools were talking to me but really the only D1 program to offer me was Wright State. I couldn't thank them more. Being highly over looked though means I worked harder to show that I belonged at the right level of college baseball, which was division 1.”
And belong he did.
After getting in on the action immediately, Kaminsky finished with a career record of 21-9 over four years and finished among the career leaders in wins (21) and single season leaders in strikeouts (88), innings pitched (97.2).
One of Kaminsky’s best memories is from his senior year, when he took the mound against the then-#1-ranked Virginia Cavaliers. Kaminsky got the win with a stellar performance sending the Cavs home with a 2-1 loss.
Unlike High School, Kaminksy was noticed coming out of college. He was contacted by Toronto and Cleveland, and eventually signed a minor-league contract with the Indians, the team he grew up following as a kid.
Despite all the accolades and success, Kaminsky hasn’t forgotten his roots.
“My family means the world to me,” Kaminsky said in an email. “They've been there for me since I was a youngster starting T-Ball all the way up until now. If it wasn't for them, I don't know if I'd be the man I am today. They've always taught me to respect people and be polite and I use those core values each and every day of my life.”
An avid “singing show” and poker fan, Kaminsky would ideally like to put his Business Leadership degree to work in coaching or the front office when his playing career comes to an end. In the meantime though, he’s not done fanning batters, and has no regrets looking back on his career to date.
“When you play baseball in [High School] your ultimate goal is to play in college and then advance to play professionally and get paid to do it. I've accomplished both of those goals I set out to do.”
And whether it is out of envy or support, we’ll continue to keep tabs on the local prospect, chasing his dream.