Washington Nationals' minor leaguer Mark Teahen is in Syracuse, playing for the Nats' top affiliate and making jokes on Twitter.
Part-time first baseman, part-time left fielder, part-time designated hitter, part-time right fielder.
Part-time Tweeter (by choice), part-time third baseman (by necessity).
Part-time No. 3, No. 4, No. 6, No. 7 hitter, full-time professional.
"I lifted Biceps again today. It might not help my #SLUG% but I'm assuming it will help my #OBP on pure intimidation. #StatRat"
"Pretty sure my time spent on the couch in High School watching TRL on @MTV helped my social life peak in College. #ThanksCarsonDaily"
"I try not to do too many of the ‘Just worked out,' tweets. I am sure people get bored with that stuff," Teahen, an owner of a pair of bulldogs, chuckles. "I am under my oldest dog's name. I started it messing around. I hope I have a comical take on most things."
"I'm planning to half heartily start a bunch of projects at my house in hopes @HGTV recognizes my incompetence & finishes them for me."
"Was just telling my pregnant wife she needs to grow a pair and she reminded me she already is. #SonOnTheWay"
"The great thing about Twitter is that it gives fans a little insight into what you are thinking or what you are doing day to day," Teahen said about his 17,000+ followers. "Of course, as a ballplayer, if you go through a tough stretch it is an opportunity for people to give you a hard time, but there is more good to it."
The tough stretch came last season in the big leagues.
He signed with Washington as a free agent over the winter and has played in Triple-A Syracuse thus far.
"Initially, after you spend a lot of time in the big leagues, it is easy to feel bad for yourself and say to yourself, ‘I wish this was different,'" Teahen said. "The longer you mope about it, the longer you are going to be here."
The Triple-A locker room can be a Bermuda Triangle for seven-year MLB veterans. He has been in over 800 major league games, but now...
("This ‘Dress Like A Seat' promotion is going too far" - about the Chiefs lack of attendance.)
...it is easy to feel slighted.
When his thumbs aren't talking at 140 characters or less, his bat is.
Teahen leads the Chiefs in runs batted in (29), hits (40), batting average (.308), doubles (9) and games played (37).
The success on the back of the baseball card comes from four different defensive positions and four different spots in the lineup.
"It isn't so bad," said Teahen who has logged innings at all three outfield and both corner infield spots in the bigs. "There is more trouble when you try to start doing more. You have to have the same approach no matter where you fall in the lineup."
Or the situation.
Coming into Saturday, Teahen was 24-for-60 with runners on base this year (.400), 18-for-38 (.474) with runners in scoring position (he drove in the first run of a 4-2 Chiefs win over Rochester). Teahen is 7-for-7 with the bases loaded this season. At worst, a sac fly and a walk with the sacks full, at best his only home run this season was a grand slam.
"We preach bringing your ‘A' game every day no matter if you are tired or depressed or whatever is going through your mind," Syracuse Manager Tony Beasley said. "When the first pitch is thrown it is time to play ball and he has done that consistently day in and day out."
Every clubhouse needs a Mark Teahen.
Even with wins in five of the last six, the Chiefs have weathered a pair of five-game losing streaks, played four doubleheaders, and lost nine of ten at one point with only six scheduled off days all season. The stress powder keg can go off unless there is a guy to defuse it.
"When passion meets talent & motivation manifests into relentless pursuit...you get a really cool sentence."
"Always keep your eye on your goal....unless you're the goalie....in which case that could greatly hinder your productivity."
"Dear Umpire, That pitch was a ball, and my wife & parents are here to confirm my opinion."
"Always keep your head up, unless you're ducking... or ugly."
That is what you get from Mark Teahen.
Full-time honesty; part-time comedy.