Smoky Valley High School sophomore Kade Blanchat is expected to be the team’s ace on the bump this season. The left-handed pitcher has the opportunity to make a real difference for Smoky Valley as many of his opponents will be facing him for the first time.
“I would have to say that me and my teammates are very excited to get out on the field as we did not get to last year,” said Blanchat. “I love being the pitcher because I feel like I can be one of the leaders on the team and I can really help contribute to the game. I like having the ball in my hand during high pressure situations. Our team has many great pitchers and I believe that will be one of our strengths this year.”
The pandemic forced a cancellation last year leaving everyone wondering what could have been. For Blanchat and his teammates, the opportunity to get back on the field is everything.
“As a team I hope we finish in the top three in league. Individually I would like to continue to improve as a player and a leader and help the team win,” said Blanchat. “I would say to keep an eye on the entire team because everyone will give great effort and work as hard as they can to win and get better. We have many talented athletes that can play a variety of positions.”
Blanchat started his baseball journey in tee-ball when he was only five years old. He’s played baseball ever since and like many of his teammates, baseball is his first love. Being around his teammates and putting in the work to improve are two things Blanchat loves about the process.
“I love how much fun we have together and how close we are on and off the field. We push each other to be the best we can be and also lift each other up and encourage each other…and we all love to eat at Panchos,” said Blanchat.
Besides being one of the pitchers on the team, Blanchat can lend his talents to other positions on the field.
“Besides pitcher I play first but this past summer I was able to play some outfield a little too. At the moment I am trying to convince coach Miller to let me become the first left-handed catcher at Smoky Valley,” said Blanchat.
As a student-athlete at Smoky Valley, Blanchat is involved in the FCA and Swedish Dancers. He also plays on the football and basketball teams. Away from sports and school you can usually find Blanchat doing a number of things.
“Some things I like doing in my free time are lifting weights, hanging out with family and friends, hunting, video games, reading, watching movies, and going to youth group,” Blanchat.
Upon graduating from Smoky Valley in 2023, the lefty plans to go to college and play baseball.