Living The Dream: How baseball impacted Dawsen Bacho and his family


Collin Houck

Dawson Bacho posing in the bleachers at the Sac State baseball field. Bacho is set to graduate this spring after a tremendous career at Sac State.

Collin Houck

June 18th, 2021 was a day to remember for the Bacho family. Walking down the path leading into Dodger Stadium, Dawsen Bacho, a graduating senior at Sac State and catcher for the Hornets, was heading to a tryout with the Los Angeles Dodgers the same day his niece was born. 

This was a very emotional and special moment for the Bacho family, according to Dawsen’s father, Steve Bacho, who said he was honored Dawsen had been given this opportunity by a professional team in the majors. 

In his career at Sac State, Bacho has won all-Western Athletic Conference second team in two of his first three seasons, WAC Tournament MVP in his redshirt sophomore season, and is a three-time academic all-WAC athlete. 

Bacho grew up in Fresno, California watching and supporting the San Francisco Giants, which he said helped him develop a passion for baseball at a young age. 

“I would say I just fell in love with baseball as a kid and the relationships I’ve made while playing and winning championships here at Sac State are why I still play,” Bacho said.

Bacho was offered a scholarship to attend Sac State going into his senior year of high school, which he said was a big influence on his decision to attend. He said he knew that Sac State was the destination for him after coming to campus and visiting with different coaches on the team. 

“So many people have impacted me,” Bacho said. “Some that stand out are my parents, high school coach Jaime Vattoune, Reggie Christiansen, and all the assistants I’ve had here at Sac State.” 

According to Bacho, Sac State baseball head coach Reggie Christiansen was instrumental in helping him develop and grow, and he values him highly. 

“He’s impacted the team in every way imaginable,” Christiansen said. “You’re not going to find a better young man to represent your program.” 

Bacho recalled what he said were some of the greatest moments in his baseball career, memories that he said he will cherish for a lifetime. 

“Biggest moment was our 2019 championship run in the WAC tourney,” Bacho said. “To win six elimination games in a row was a special thing to be a part of and something I’ll never forget.”

Bacho also used to play in different travel ball leagues growing up and used those experiences and friendships to grow and eventually attend Sac State to play.  

A young Dawson Bacho up to bat when he was younger. Bacho played in several travel ball leagues growing up. (Photo courtesy of: Steve Bacho)

His father recalls a special moment in Dawsen’s career. According to Steve Bacho, when Dawsen was playing a game with the East Bay Bombers (one of Dawsen’s travel teams), he hit a grand slam when the team was down by three runs in the ninth inning. 

It was just one of many moments the Bacho family will never forget. 

“I remember my travel ball days when I was about twelve,” Bacho said. “We went to places like New York, Florida, and Georgia.” “Those were great trips and the relationships I made during High School baseball were great as well.” 

Bacho’s teammate, senior LHP Brady Rodriguez, said that the two have a lot of memories from playing together at Sac State. 

“I met Dawsen when I joined the team in 2018,” Rodriguez said. “I have played with him for five years and he has been my roommate for four years. He has always been someone who is positive and has good vibes.” 

Rodriguez said there was one particular moment he had with Bacho that he will never forget. 

“My fond memory of Dawsen comes in the form of superstitions,” Rodriguez said. “In 2019, when we won the WAC tournament, he led the team in spiritual worship of the moon and would give sage to each player as well as burn sage in the dugout.” 

Bacho’s parents, Steve and Kerry Bacho have also been huge inspirations and big supporters in their son’s baseball career and his entire life, according to him. 

“Dawsen has been playing since he was four years old,” Dawsen Bacho’s father Steve Bacho said. “He always had that drive to get better and gave 100 percent.” 

Dawsen Bacho’s mother, according to his father, is a big driving force for his thinking and development over the years. He said she often reminds Bacho  to believe in himself and that “it’s never over until it’s over.” 

“We’ve met wonderful people along the way,” Steve Bacho said. “Reggie believed in him and I’ve thanked him personally.” 

Bacho is unsure about what his future holds once he graduates, but he said he is optimistic and looking forward to what life has in store for him. 

“Like I’ve said a little bit before, I’m just trying to take it one day at a time,” Bacho said. “If I have the opportunity to play professional baseball, that would be amazing. If not, then I will start a new career, maybe in sales.”