It’s the success story aspiring pitchers dreams of when they step into the speed pitch box at a baseball game.
Nathan Patterson dazzled the internet two weeks ago when his brother posted a video of him whipping out a fastball that hit 96 miles per hour (almost 155 kilometres per hour) in a speed pitch challenge at Coors Field while at a Colarado Rockies game. Now, he’s been signed by the Oakland Athletics.
“Guys, we were just chillin at a @rockies baseball game, and my brother decided to step into a speed pitch challenge…he hit 96 mph,” reads the tweet by Patterson’s brother, Christian, posted on July 15.
In the attached video, Patterson throws a pitch at 90 miles per hour. Then, 94. Another 94. Voices offscreen egg him on to hit a 96—and in the next pitch, he does. He lands a 95 and another 96 before the video ends.
Christian tagged the official Major League Baseball Twitter account, along with the words, “Let’s get him signed!”
Those words came true for Patterson this month: he posted on Instagram on Thursday that he had been picked up by the Oakland Athletics.
“Words cannot describe this feeling and I cannot thank everyone enough who has been part of this journey so far!” Patterson wrote. In the post, he shared pictures of him signing his contract and of his new gear in an Oakland A’s locker.
Patterson had been a free agent pitcher trying to find a deal for months. His own Twitter has several other videos of him throwing pitches, most tagging @FlatgroundApp. It’s an account started by Rob Friedman, a pitching analyst, which shares aspiring and amateur pitchers’ videos, as well providing a space for pitchers to give and receive advice on their technique.
Patterson tweeted thanks to Friedman and @FlatgroundApp for their help with exposure. One of Patterson’s earlier videos shared on that account shows him pitching up to 95 mph – with one arm in a cast.
“It’s been a roller coaster to get here with many challenges and overcoming adversity,” Patterson said in his Instagram post.
He thanked his family for their “love and support,” and said he’d been dreaming of this since he was a child.
“And for those who tell you that you can’t achieve your dreams, use that as fuel to work even harder,” he said. “Because those people are the ones that settle. Go after your dreams and make them a reality!”
Patterson’s story is an example that hard work and dedication does pay off — sometimes, all it takes to find success is to put yourself out there. Or, failing that, have your brother put you out there, and tag your dream employer.July 15, 2019 View this post on Instagram
“How can you not be romantic about baseball” -Billy Beane Words cannot describe this feeling and I cannot thank everyone enough who has been part of this journey so far! My family has given me nothing but constant love and support throughout the last 9 months as I pursue a dream of mine that I’ve had since I was a little kid. It’s been a roller coaster to get here with many challenges and overcoming adversity. I’m grateful for all the trainers, coaches, friends, @rsrbaseball and everyone else who has supported me thus far! And for those who tell you that you can’t achieve your dreams, use that as fuel to work even harder. Because those people are the ones that settle. I’m grateful for the @athletics organization for giving me this opportunity! This story is not over. It is not the beginning. I am writing the next chapters and excited for this journey! Time to focus even more, work even harder, and it all starts with your mindset. Go after your dreams and make them a reality!
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