(September 19, 2019) Nick Badders has wanted to visit Australia since watching The Crocodile Hunter on TV while in preschool. Now he’s going to work there. An STAA member, Badders is the new voice of the Melbourne Aces of the Australian Baseball League.
The league runs from November through February. It fits perfectly with Badders’ schedule as broadcaster for the Elizabethton Twins, the Minnesota Twins rookie league team in Tennessee.
“I’ve had an interest in working in the Australian Baseball League for several years but hadn’t seen an opening until STAA sent out the position description in an exclusive job leads email,” says Badders.
Badders’ career has already taken him to several diverse locations. He graduated from Arizona State University in the middle of the desert. He moved to California wine country to call Sonoma Stompers summer collegiate baseball, then onto the Blue Ridge Mountains and Elizabethton.
Moving to Australia for several months gave Badders pause before his mother offered a unique perspective. “My mom compared this opportunity to a semester studying abroad,” he recalls. “When I looked at it like that, it was an opportunity I knew I wanted to take.
“There was the added challenge of how it would affect my last year of college and earning my degree from the Cronkite School, but thankfully ASU offers so many classes online that it was a challenge solved quickly.”
Badders credits his knowledge of the ABL and a strong reference from Boyd Sports VP Jeremy Boler for helping him land the job. Boyd Sports is the company that owns the Elizabethton Twins. “Jeremy was comfortable writing a letter of recommendation for me after I had been with the E-Twins for less than a full season. I don’t think I would have gotten the Aces job without his confidence in me and his words in support of me to Melbourne’s front office.”
A strong cover letter also helped Badders earn the gig. It’s something he’s worked to improve since joining STAA in 2018. “Cover letters, from my perspective are one of the trickiest parts of applying for jobs,” he says. “Before I joined STAA, I didn’t know what did or did not work. Now that I know what a successful cover letter and even resume look like, I can apply that to future applications and immediately know that my application will rise to the top.”
Badders joined STAA to help him advance in pro baseball. “I wanted to expand my network in the industry while also improving my skills and marketability as a candidate,” he says. “I’ve done all of those things and once I made the jump to Minor League Ball from Indy Ball, I knew STAA would help me stay in affiliated baseball and advance my career further, which it has.”
Badders’ advice to anyone new to STAA’s membership is to take advantage of all the resources. “Not all at once, because there are a ton and it can get overwhelming, but over time take advantage of everything,” he grins. “The exclusive job postings, the job market advice, the pages on how to improve your broadcasting, everything. And take advantage of Jon [Chelesnik’s] help. I quite literally would not have gotten either my job in Elizabethton or this one in Melbourne without his direct help.
“I’ve twice asked for his advice and feedback on my cover letter and resume. Both times I did I got the job I was applying for. Don’t be afraid to send emails, asking for critiques or simply advice. It will all be worth it and he will help.”
There are many more minor league baseball broadcasting job seekers than there are openings each off-season. “Plenty of positions are posted publicly,” says Badders. “But the number of exclusive leads and postings that I’ve received from STAA is beyond what I expected. In an industry that is brutal, I feel like I am a step ahead of the curve. So there is an element of added confidence simply in knowing that I do have these other potential avenues to take my career down that not everyone knows about.”
Now, Badders’ career path is taking him Down Under for the winter.
“Taking this job was the biggest life decision I feel like I have made to this point in my 21 plus years of existence,” he smiles.
(Visit Nick’s website).