Superstition or Habit: The Stories Behind Big Train players’ Pre-game Rituals

by Lily Stewart

Growing up, many kids tried their hand at sports, whether it was just at the rec league level or if we were lucky enough, the collegiate level. And it’s safe to say that we all learned important life skills and important traits about ourselves as individuals.They probably developed a “superstition”. 

Each superstition is unique to an athlete. Baseball players tend to be the most superstitious of them all. Some of them have a favorite clothing item they wear or a song they listen to. For Bethesda Big Train player Brandon Cassedy, it’s a specific meal. For his teammate Andrew Williamson, it’s a symbol he makes with his bat when at the plate. 

Cassedy, a pitcher for the Big Train, has to order a Jetty Punch and a chicken and cheese quesadilla from Tropical Smoothie Café before every start. 

“Most of us would go to Tropical Smoothie since it was like five minutes away from school. We started doing that and then I started succeeding a lot so I stuck with it and have been doing it ever since,” said Cassedy. 

The superstition started in highschool when his coach gave the team time after school before a game to hangout in air conditioning and get food to help them relax. 

For Williamson, his “superstition” started just out of habit when he was younger. 

“I do draw a cross over the plate…Whenever I was younger, I used to draw it in the dirt with my bat knob but I was getting them too dirty so I decided to cross it over the plate instead,” said Williamson. 

Many athletes believe if they miss their superstition before a game then consequences will follow. Williamson says that he’s undecided on if his superstition helps or not, but he does it more out of habit. 

On the other hand, Cassedy believes that his pregame meal does impact his performance. 

“It ends up not being a great outing or what I want it to be, so I try everything possible to make sure I get it, whether it’s four hours before the game or one hour whatever it may be,” said Cassedy. 

If he is unable to order his usual, he tries to keep his mind off of it and just focus on the game. 

Other Big Train players have certain routines they do the mornings of games or take a certain amount of steps before they pitch. In their eyes, these are routines and not superstitions. 

Whether it’s the order in how they get ready or throw out their pitches when warming up on the mound, they all have their so-called routines in place. 

Whatever the players believe has their season back on track as of late. The Big Train is back on a win streak, defeating two out of their three most recent opponents.