BISMARCK, N.D. - The Bismarck Larks sent four players to Iowa for the Northwoods League All-Star Game last week. One of the guys who earned a spot on the team is infielder Zack Gregory.The University of Arkansas product in this weeks Sports Spotlight.
Numbers don't lie and Zack Gregory's numbers say nobody has been better at getting on base than the Arkansas product turned Lark. He has more walks than anyone in the Northwoods League and has an on-base percentage just north of 500, with most of this happening out of the lead off spot.
"I think its a big deal. I feel like a lot of times during the games if I am able to get a base hit or just get on base, even it just kind of amps up the dugout, and amps up the team, and just gets us rolling to get into the game, and it just puts a different tone to us, it just allows us to get on the other team early and fast and I feel its a big help to our team," said Gregory.
Gregory has been a big help for the Larks both offensively and defensively and when he's in the infield his teammates and coaches have noticed.
"He's a great player. He's just an amazing player both on offense and defense. He is just going to make a spectacular play and even when he does have an off day and he kind of makes a mistake I always tell him I got you and on the next pitch I am going to give you another chance and he never messes up twice I will tell you that," said Dominic Arias, Bismarck Larks pitcher.
"He's the best in the league in that category. In my mind he is the best lead off hitter in the league and he deserves that nod and I am proud of him," said Sean Repay, Bismarck Larks Head Coach.
Gregory's season led him to the Northwoods League All Star Game, something he didn't see coming at first.
"Man I was just so excited to hear it, you know, I just came out here and wanted to do good and be better, and I had no expectations of making the All Star game or anything like that. It is super cool because its a big league and people come out all the time to watch and its a big deal to all those people, so for me to make that team I feel like it's a big deal and it's a big deal for me," said Gregory.
But, how did Gregory get here from the SEC to the Northwoods League and playing for the Larks?
"My coach said, 'hey, you are going up to Bismarck this summer,' and I was like, all right, I am ready to go. I had no expectations and had no idea, but I had a buddy on the team, Jacob Nesbit, who was here last year. He told me it was an awesome time and it was fun and honestly he was right. I have been here and I have had a great time. All the dudes have been great. I met a bunch of good friends and the coaches are cool and the fans are awesome here; they back the crowd here all the time. It's just a great place to be and play baseball," said Gregory.
A great place that helped Gregory blossom into a better player. Gregory and the Larks beat Duluth Tuesday night, they're off Wednesday and head to St.Cloud on Thursday.