Junior Kody Gardner has played on the varsity baseball team since he was a freshman. Kody has been recognized as one of the best shortstops in the league the past two years as he has received All-League honors.
Along with being one of the smoothest fielders. Kody has a consistent bat and brings a presence to the lineup. Kody struggled at the beginning of his freshman year, but picked it up during league where he batted an incredible .485 average.
Overall his bat has remained quite consistent, hitting .340 his freshman year and .353 his sophomore year.
He recently verbally committed to Sacramento State for a 60% scholarship and looks forward to playing under Coach Christiansen.
Along with receiving All-League honors, Kody was also invited to play on the Red Sox Scout Team under current Major League scouts Scott Richardson and Desmond Smith. Both praised Kody for his elite level of play and great understanding of the game.
“I know Kody will play for a D-1 level college somewhere, but he also has the potential to play at the next level after that.” said Scott Richardson. Over the next two seasons, multiple college and pro scouts will come to watch him play.
One only needs to reach back into his past a few years to realize his commitment to the sport but anyone could look further to view a consistent dedication over the course of his entire life.
New varsity baseball coach here at Rio, Alec Smith, has known and coached Kody for over four years now and no one is more acquainted with his great work ethic and competitive attitude.
“Kody plays the game right each and everyday.” said Varsity Coach Alec Smith.
In addition, Kody stands out as a character on this years varsity team boasting some of the funniest quotes and jokes. One particularly popular one among not just teammates but friends as well is his loud, “I like it a lot!” Which could have to do with anything from celebrating a great play or making a wise crack at an opposing error.
Ultimately, it is the combination of Kody’s great charisma and modesty partnered with his clear athletic merit which warrants the acknowledgement of his peers. This balance is what makes Kody Gardner a shining example of the ideal Rio Raider.