The Gateway Grizzlies are proud to announce that four of their players- infielder Trevor Achenbach, outfielder Isaac Benard, relief pitcher John Murphy, and catcher Jackson Pritchard- have been voted in to the 2022 Frontier League All-Star Game on July 20 in Washington, Pennsylvania.
Achenbach has been one of the best power hitters in the Frontier League this season, as he currently ranks second in the league with 16 home runs. Entering play on Tuesday, the Billings, Montana native also ranks sixth in the league in runs scored (46) and places just outside the top-10 in doubles (14) and RBIs (40). It is the second time he has been voted a midseason all-star in his Frontier League career, as he was also an all-star in 2019 while a member of the River City Rascals.
Benard is an all-star for the second time in his Frontier League career as well, having also been selected for the honor in 2018 as a member of the Traverse City Beach Bums. The Richland, Washington native has enjoyed a great season, leading the Grizzlies with a .335 batting average (tied for tenth in the Frontier League), .413 on-base percentage, and 60 total hits entering Tuesday’s games. He is currently riding a 13-game hit streak and a 24-game on-base streak, the longest of the season for any Gateway hitter, while Benard’s 11 home runs and 16 doubles are second-most on the Grizzlies roster.
Murphy has been a trusted reliever for manager Steve Brook all season long, as his 26 appearances lead the Grizzlies and rank tied for second in the league by one. With 2.96 ERA in 24 1/3 innings pitched this season, the hard-throwing right-hander from Merchantville, New Jersey is second among primary relief pitchers in the league with 42 strikeouts, with his 15.53 strikeouts-per-nine-innings rate also placing him second among pitchers who have thrown at least 20 innings. 2022 will be his first Frontier League all-star selection.
Pritchard will also make his first appearance at the Frontier League All-Star Game in 2022. The experienced backstop is hitting .241 entering play on Tuesday with four home runs and 17 RBIs. His home runs have been very notable, as among them are a pair of game-tying shots at Windy City and Schaumburg in what became Grizzlies wins in Chicagoland as well as a grand slam home run.
The Grizzlies are back in action on Tuesday, July 12, when they open up a big six-game home stand at GCS Credit Union Ballpark with the first of a three-game series against the West Division-leading Washington Wild Things. First pitch is scheduled for 6:45 p.m. CT in Sauget.