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Kaylee Swanson moves to the Australian Baseball League

WSR: What was your first job with the York Revolution?

Kaylee Swanson: I started here as an intern: Group Events Assistant and was promoted to a Group Events Coordinator and now assume the role of Corporate Partnerships Associate.

WSR: When did you see your first professional baseball game?

Kaylee: I saw my first professional game back in 1990, the Cleveland Indians vs. Oakland A’s.
WSR: When did you get interested in baseball?  Who influenced you?

Kaylee: I couldn’t tell you a time I wasn’t interested in baseball. Literally, my first word was ball. My dad influenced me most because he’s the one that would take me out in the yard every day and play catch.

WSR: What do you do in the current role?  What are your responsibilities?

Kaylee: Right now I handle all types of partnerships from a child’s birthday party to outfield signage. I make contact with the people, create contracts, input payment, carry out events, and host the customer.

WSR: What do you love the most about your job? 

Kaylee:  What I love most is the relationship with the customers. Everyone knows me by name and finds me to say hello. I take walks with one man biweekly to help him keep in shape (over my lunch break.) There is nothing thing better than coming to work knowing people are looking forward to seeing you.
WSR: What is the most difficult part of your job?

Kaylee: The most difficult part of my job is dealing with rejection. Being a sales person you have  got to have a bit of thick skin because you are going to hear no, and in most cases you’re going to hear it more than you hear yes.

WSR: What was the biggest obstacle you overcame to get into baseball?

Kaylee: Before I took this position I was the Director of Game Operations for an Arena Football team. I didn’t have very much sales experience and I realized sales is the most important part of a sports organization. I decided to take an internship position which felt like a step backward to then prove myself and take two steps forward.

WSR: Where were you born and raised?

Kaylee: I was raised in Sandusky, Ohio and attended Perkins High School.
BD.Com: Did you attend college?

Kaylee: Yes, I went to college at Indiana Tech in Fort Wayne, Indiana and majored in Business Administration with a concentration in Sports Management.
WSR: What career were you considering while in college, and how, why and when did you change and go into baseball?

Kaylee: All of my internships involved sports. I dabbled with Arena Football and
a local Soccer organization before jumping into baseball. I’ve always wanted to be in sports in one way or another.

Kaylee: Did you play sports in High School?

Kaylee: In High School I started the Women’s Soccer team after playing on the boy’s team my freshman year. I also played basketball for a year, bowled for three years, ran track for two years (placed at states) and then played softball. In college I played soccer and softball and played softball in Belgium after my sophomore year.
WSR: Who was your mentor in baseball?

Kaylee: I would say John Gibson. He’s our Assistant General Manager of Operations. I’ve learned a lot from him about persistence and time management. He is actually the person that first hired me. John wears many hats and takes on lots of challenges but somehow does a great job keeping a smile on in front of clients.
WSR: What is the most outstanding memory you have working for the Revolution?

Kaylee: I would Recovery Night (one of my theme nights) we actually had a human chain all the way around the field. There were probably 700 people supporting one cause including the city Mayor and Dickie Noles. Also, we won the 2010 Atlantic League Championship winning the series 3-0 vs. Bridgeport Bluefish. The final score was 5-4 in 10 innings. I wasn't there when we won, I was trying out for a women's football team...go figure.

WSR: What advice would you give a young woman considering a career in baseball?

Kaylee: I would tell her to be patient. Baseball careers take a while to mature. The more time/effort you put in the more respect you earn and confidence you develop.
WSR: What makes you successful at your job?

Kaylee: It is my baseball knowledge and customer service.

WSR: Aside from your team, what teams do you follow? Have a favorite player?

Kaylee: I have been a Cleveland Indians fan my entire life but I have a huge heart for the Baltimore Orioles and spend most of my free time at Camden Yards. Matt Weiters is my favorite!

WSR:  hould baseball utilize instant replay?    

Kaylee: Yes and no. I don't like taking the human aspect totally away and I feel instant replay does a bit. As in everything else of course there are good things about it but don't change baseball. I like it the way it is.
WSR: What is one of the funniest things you have seen with your team?

Kaylee: Without a doubt it was the evening we had ladies night. The entire staff (men included) wore dresses!
WSR: Do you follow other sports?  Aside from your team, what teams do you follow?

Kaylee: I love Ohio State Buckeye football! Other than that I try being a sports fan and enjoying games because I have been a fan of Ohio sports teams for so long. I think I've had enough heart attacks in the last twenty-four years. I guess I like the Baltimore Ravens come to think of it.
WSR: What do you do for relaxation after work?

Kaylee: Honestly, I go to baseball games. I've been to 14 major league stadiums and probably close to thirty minor league stadiums. Other than baseball I like to work out and listen to music and travel.

WSR: How did you wind up working for the York?

Kaylee: I found a posting on teamwork online.
WSR: What kind of music do you like?  Have a favorite band?  Favorite song?

Kaylee: I do not have a genre. I like Lucero and Red Hot Chili Peppers but my favorite song is Miss Ferguson by Cory Branan
WSR: Do you have a nickname?

Kaylee: Yes, people around here call me Kay or Kayl.s
WSR: What is your biggest pet peeve?

Kaylee: When other people watch you work and don't offer to help
WSR: Do you travel? What is your favorite ballpark to watch a game? What is your American city?

Kaylee: Traveling is another hobby of mine. At this point I'd name Kauffman Stadium my favorite ball park but have to say San Diego is my favorite city.
WSR: What American woman do you admire the most?

Kaylee: I don't really have one other than my mother who worked hard as a single mom to support my brother and I
WSR: What are your long term goals?

Kaylee: I would love to become a General Manager some day and after that part of life is over I’d love to be a Head Softball Coach at the collegiate level. I coach part time with the York College Spartans currently.
WSR: What do you do during the off season?

Kaylee: I travel and spend time with my boyfriend
WSR: Do the York have a mascot?

Kaylee: Our mascot is a Blue Bird creature named DownTown.

WSR: Who are a few Major League players you like to watch? Why?

Kaylee: Matt Weiters (my boyfriend and my first game was his debut), Luke Scott because I love yelling LUUUUUUKE and my college friend Josh Judy, he just got called up to the Indians!
WSR: What is your greatest accomplishment since you have been with your team?

Kaylee: Achieving my sales goals in both of the season I have been with the Revolution.

WSR: Why have you chosen to go to Australia and what is your job?

Kaylee: It is an opportunity to reach a new baseball demographic. This is only the second season for the league and it is under the MLB umbrella. Hopefully, this will be a huge step in my baseball career.

I just answered this question from my desk on my first day here and at this point,
I have not been given responsibilities. Hope to fill you in at a later date.

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Norm Coleman is a sports writer, actor and photographer. He lives in Half Moon Bay, Calif.

[email protected]               www.tycobb367.com
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