TeamMates of the Month: Jayden & Ken
A winning pair – a bond beyond baseball
There may not be a TeamMates match that loves baseball as much as Lux eighth-grader Jayden and his mentor Ken.
Jayden proudly wears his competitive team’s gear to school. Every week, he fills Ken in on the weekend’s games. Ken recalls traveling 40 miles from his hometown to play on the closest team growing up and watching the New York Yankees on his family’s black and white TV.
Although Ken loves baseball, he found his mentor in another sport – football. His football coach mentored him and modeled values that he now shares with Jayden.
“I learned so much about sportsmanship, being fair and working hard,” Ken said. “He was definitely an influence on my life and my buddies’ lives.”
Ken is proud to see Jayden living out those values. He appreciates Jayden’s humble attitude with baseball and in life.
“He never brags about himself or any of his talents,” Ken said. “You’ve got to drag it out of him [when he excels].”
Sports are not the only competition this mentoring pair enjoys. Jayden and Ken also like playing board games.
“I’ve taught him some card games and he taught me some card games,” Jayden said. “Playing games is entertaining, but we also talk about baseball and what’s going on in life.”
“Jayden has a very good perspective of life and family, what’s important,” said Ken. “I am totally in awe regarding the love he has for his family.”
Along with playing games and chatting about baseball, the pair have also centered their conversations on balancing athletics and academics.
Jayden said his meetings with Ken help with that.
“I can just come here and play games and calm myself instead of stressing about school the whole time,” Jayden said.
“We make up our own rules for the games and just laugh,” Ken said. “He encourages me to win. He’s happy when I win, but you can tell in his eyes he’s still proud that he wins most of the time.”
“I usually win, and no one else likes me to win all the time, but he deals with it,” Jayden said.
“And I was just talking about how humble you are,” Ken laughed.
TeamMates helped create this winning pair – a bond beyond baseball.
Published: November 8, 2022, Updated: November 8, 2022