Blog Post #1
By: Aaron Bates
Follow my daily Spring Training journey on twitter at: @A33bates
I'm very excited that Seth Stohs asked me to do a regular blog throughout spring training. It's truly one of my favorite times of year as I love getting back on the field and seeing my teammates after a long off season. I will be talking about a variety of things through my blogging, but sorry this won't be a place for any inside scoop or gossip. It's more about the game on and off the field, some fun facts and a way to bring you all a little bit closer to the ins and outs of a player's life during Minnesota Twins spring training.
To get started, here's a bit of background on my journey to the Minnesota Twins organization. I was a member of the NC State Wolfpack until the Boston Red Sox selected me in the 3rd round of the 2006 draft. I then began my journey to the big leagues and made my debut on July 6, 2009 against the Oakland A's at Fenway Park. Last year, after five years in the Red Sox organization I became a free agent and was fortunate enough to sign with the Minnesota Twins on May 8, 2011. I then spent the 2011 season at the AAA affiliate, Rochester Red Wings. I was honored when the Twins wanted to bring me back for the 2012 season, as I felt this was truly the right place for me.
Since this is my first blog, I've decided to give you 20 fun facts to get to know me better.
1. I'm a die hard New England Patriots fan (save the comments Giants fans).
2. Tom Brady & Barry Bonds went to my rival high school in Northern California.
3. I have the initials M.L.B. in every baseball hat I have worn since 2004. Most think it stands for Major League Baseball, but in fact it's in honor of my dad, mentor and best friend, the late Mark Lloyd Bates.
4. I'm a newlywed, I was married this past offseason to my college sweetheart and best friend.
5. I'm a diehard San Jose Sharks fan and hockey enthusiast.
6. My favorite vacation spot is Whistler, British Columbia, even though I have never skied or snow boarded.
7. My favorite channel is the History Channel.
8. I was a catcher my whole life, up until my last year of college.
9. I won the Home Run Derby in the 2005 Cape Cod League All-Star game.
10. My father-in-law played in the NHL for 16 seasons and won the Norris Trophy. (Hint: first captain in San Jose Sharks history.) I've learned a lot about the business side of sports from him.
11. Spent the last 4 winters playing in the Puerto Rican Winter Baseball League.
12. Sat front row (with my now wife & USC alum) at the 2005 Rose Bowl. Thanks Vince Young for ruining my night.
13. Favorite offseason activity is watching live acoustic music. Favorites include Matt Nathanson, Gavin DeGraw and Eli Young Band.
14. Favorite way to unwind during Spring Training is barbecue and go to movies.
15. In 2007, I was the first person in Cal League history to hit 4 home runs in a game.
16. I was a quarterback in high school. I always wanted to play in the NFL.
17. I was at the game when Barry Bonds set the home run record at 73.
18. My favorite TV show is Vampire Diaries and I'm not afraid to admit it.
19. My favorite Fort Myers restaurant is Blu Sushi (Volcano roll is my go-to) and my second favorite spot is Kilwin's ice cream. Having a rough time with that one since I gave up ice cream for Lent.
20. You would never guess if you saw me but I'm half Puerto Rican.
Time to wind down for another big day at the field tomorrow. Looking forward to blogging more for you later this week. Thanks again for all your support this season!