Player Spotlight: Grace "Swedes" Swedarsky - 2026 Elite RHP/1B; ERA 1.00; WHIP .804
Indiana Magic Gold Bennett/Goddard National 14U:
Name: Grace Swedarsky
Hometown: Fishers, IN
Grad Year: 2026
Travel Team: Indiana Magic Gold Bennett/Goddard National 14U
High School: Hamilton Southeastern
Height: 5’ 9”
Intended Study Major: Engineering
What does Grace's coaches say about her?
We are biased but we think Grace is one of, if not the best, pitchers in her class (2026). And she is just getting started.
She is one of 3 girls on our team named Grace. We had to come up with nicknames for each so we could communicate better. Enter “Swedes” (pronounced “Sweeds”). She may not have loved it at first -- but it quickly took. After pitching her 17th strikeout in a game in Fall 2021, the opposing coach was overheard saying, “I’ve gotta find me a Swedes.” We think a lot of top college programs are going to be fighting over Swedes in a couple years.
When Grace came to our squad at 12U from a local community team, we knew she could throw strikes (she logged something like 150 strikeouts in 75 innings pitched if memory serves). But that was B-level ball and Grace had her way with batters. We did our best to manage expectations that those results would likely not continue as our team plays some of the best competition in the country. And while she did drop down to a mere 1.4 SO/Inning in her first year with us at 12U, she kept working and developing and improved to 1.6 SO/Inning at 13U and is back up to 1.9 SO/Inning in the Fall of her 14U season. This is an incredible accomplishment as our schedule has only gotten tougher - we consistently face top 50 teams in the country in our age group.
Grace shows no signs of slowing down either – she is working to perfect her change-up and if she does, batters will have an even harder time figuring her out.
Put simply, Grace misses bats. She either places her pitch perfectly or makes the ball dance in such a way that most batters are left guessing. Sometimes both. We often find ourselves comparing her command and speed variations to Greg Maddux, a first ballot hall-of-fame MLB pitcher. She is also tall and lean, with long limbs and a cool approach that reminds us of Kat Sandercock.
Grace consistently puts up double digit strikeouts per game. Against a nationally ranked opponent who averaged less than 2.5 Ks per game and had never had more than 7 in a game this past fall, Grace had 15 Ks in 6 innings. When she faced them again a week later, she had 8 Ks in 5 innings.
Grace’s incredible physical skills are at least equaled, if not surpassed, by her coachability, mental toughness and demeanor in the circle. She has ice in her veins and the best “next pitch” approach we have ever seen. While she can easily pitch whole games, she has also proven herself in challenging relief situations. Multiple times she has come into the circle with bases loaded and nobody out and walked back into the dugout without allowing a run.
Grace is a great teammate and a pleasure to have on our squad. She also has a kind and supportive family, and works very hard at softball and in the classroom. We all feel blessed to be on this journey with her – quite simply, she’s a superstar in the making. As Grace continues to develop, her trajectory should make her one of the most sought-after players in the country before it is all said & done.
How did your softball journey begin?
I started playing softball when I was 5 years old. I joined a local travel ball team in 10U and I have been playing ever since. I joined my current team in 2020.
What are your greatest strengths as a softball player?
My greatest strength is my pitching. I work really hard increasing my speed and spin every week during lessons. My pitching coach emphasizes eyes-closed pitching and that helps me accurately hit my spots.
Pitching Stats for this past Fall Season:
125 innings pitched
492 batters faced
243 Ks to 26 BBs
ERA = 1.00
WHIP = .804
FIP = .167
BAA = .164
Describe your leadership style and what characteristics do you find in outstanding leaders?
My leadership style is being supportive to all of my teammates. I always have a team first mentality and strive to bring the best out of my teammates.
Punching their ticket to the Alliance Nationals this Summer
You’re obviously very busy with so many activities and events in your life. How do you balance your life and manage your time so effectively?
I always make sure to find time to get my pitching lesson and workout in for the day. I typically practice my violin in the evening. If I have any work to get done over the weekend I complete that in the car while driving to/from my tournaments.
Grace and her Dad in Kansas City on Father’s Day
Describe your gameday mental preparation and your thought process and mindset in the circle and/or the batters box.
I look through my pitching notes and visualize all of my pitches before I take the mound. While in the circle, I stay calm and tell myself this hitter won’t get on base.
What is your favorite sports memory and greatest achievement?
It was September 25th 2021, in Peoria, Illinois at the Louisville Slugger Sports Complex. I had a near-perfect game, striking out 17 and only allowing one baserunner. During that game I also caught a line drive.
Grace earning the MVP award during one of their pool play games at Nationals in Iowa
How do you handle adversity and even failure?
When I face adversity it lights a fire inside of me to try harder the next time.
Nationals in Myrtle Beach. Team reached the Select 16 and made it to Sunday. Won 2 games the night before and won a game that morning to put them in the Select 16. Won that game on back-to-back homeruns from Haley (#26) and Gracie (#55)
How would your teammates and friends describe you?
My friend and travel ball teammate Hannah Dent describes me as this: “You are always focused on the job that needs to be done. Your ability to keep your emotions neutral in the circle is intimidating to the batters. You are hard working and you are an amazing teammate who will always be there to pick others up. You are an awesome friend off the field as well. Your talent continues to grow season after season and it is so fun to watch you pitch.” My friend and school ball teammate Kaitlyn Burdick describes me as “disciplined, determined, and smart”.
Grace playing Putt-Putt with her teammates Sharpie, Hannah, and Natalie during Nationals in Iowa
If you could spend a day with any softball player, former or current, who would it be and why?
I would spend a day with Danielle Watson. She played for Florida State in the 2021 WCWS and is a Magic Gold softball alum. I think it would be really cool to spend a day with her to learn all about her softball career and what it was like to pitch in the WCWS. I’ve had the opportunity to work with her a couple of times.
Winning the USSSA state tournament
What is your softball dream/goal?
My goal is to get a softball scholarship at a college with a top Engineering school.
Grace with siblings Brooklyn, Ava, and Zach at a Luau during our trip to Hawaii
Describe your perfect softball team.
My perfect softball team is when everyone brings their own unique talents and skills to the team. It is important to be very supportive of each other and have great chemistry.
Nationals in Iowa
When deciding on what college team to play for what are the most important things you’re looking for?
I find the most important things to be strong academics, coaching staff, and team chemistry.
Playing card games at the hotel with her teammates
What gets you hyped or ready before a game?
I just stay calm and mentally focus before each game.
Grace and her teammates whitewater rafting in Chatanooga, Tennessee
What is your favorite jersey number and why did you choose it?
My favorite jersey number is 30. When I was 9 years old I became a fan of Stephen Curry (and he is number 30).
What other hobbies do you have to balance out softball and your personal life?
I play the violin and crochet. I am in the advanced symphony orchestra at my school. I have crocheted many things like blankets, socks and stuffed animals.
Grace's grandparents and siblings enjoy watching her play
Who would you like to thank for your softball achievements and support?
I would like to thank my parents for always supporting me and getting me to all of my practices and tournaments. A special thanks to my Mom who always catches for me at my lessons. I would like to thank my very first travel ball coach, A.J. Fritsche. He was my first coach who believed in me. He still reaches out to check on me and has always supported me. Lastly I would like to thank all of my current coaches (Jeff Goddard, Roger Bennett, Adam West, and Chad Key) and my pitching coach (Casey Clutch Creakbaum) who push me to be the best pitcher I can be.
Grace and family after two late night games at Nationals in Myrtle Beach
The Swedarsky Family at the Grand Canyon
Additional Information About Grace
Favorite Food: Sweet potato soufflé
Favorite Music Artist: Taylor Swift
Favorite Sports Team: Golden State Warriors
Favorite Sports Celebrity: Stephen Curry
Favorite Movie: Any of the marvel movies
Favorite TV Show: Survivor
Favorite Travel Spot: Maui, Hawaii
Favorite Quote: “Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do” - Pele
TEAM NOTES & ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
Swedes has been instrumental in helping her team get better every season – some notable accomplishments include:
- HFL Fall Championship (Arkansas) – 1st Place 14U (November, 2022) - Bid earned for Alliance Nat'l Championships Aug 1-6, 2023 held in Westfield, IN
- Co-Champions at HFL Alliance Invite - 14U (October, 2022)
- Won Super Pool at Scenic City Summer 2022 and finished 2nd place in Super Pool bracket
- 2nd place at Team1 Elite Invite in Kansas City Summer 2022. 1st year 14U team beat several 2nd year & nationally ranked teams
- Championship games in 4 June 2022 tournaments (3 x runner-up & 1 championship)
- Signature wins vs. many nationally recognized programs (IA Premier, TN Mojo, Aces, Athletics Mercado, KY Chrome, Top Gun, NE Gold, BATS Academy National, LLG, Stingrays, Outlaws, STL Chaos, Beverly Bandits, Hotshots, TN Fury Platinum X, SFL Diamond Dusters, Ohio Lasers, Finesse, MW Speed)
Legacy & Legends Softball, Andrew Jacob, February 10, 2023