The Bismarck Governors are perennial contenders when it comes to Legion Baseball, but at 8-4 on the season, it’s about handling the high expectations that come with the territory of donning a Bismarck Governors’ uniform.
Once again, the team that represents Bismarck at the Class AA level finds themselves near the top of the standings, starting with an offense that has generated the second-most runs this season, lead by the way they run the bases.
“I feel like we have a pretty speedy team this year,” says IF/P/C Cru Walker. “Definitely our bats, all of us can hit the ball pretty well so, I say putting the ball in play and using our feet and our bats is going to help us the most.”
“I really does come down to a couple of runs usually,” says head coach Mike Skytland. “And if a pitcher is on when you’re facing them, you need to find a way to score even if can’t hit three balls in a row into the gap. And I think speed is one of those things that can do that.”
On the mound, it’s a different story. Leaning on more depth than ever for their pitching staff, one that won’t wow people, but just gets the job done.
“Year’s past, we don’t have that Cade Feeney or Skyler Reidinger anymore,” says IF/OF/P/C Ben Patton. “But I think what we do have is a bunch of guys that can throw strikes. So while we may not be super overwhelming in terms of velocity, I think we have a lot of guys that can throw strikes.”
It’s been seven years since the Govs won a state title, and if they want to lift the trophy in Mandan this summer, it comes down to how they handle the high expectations of being a Bismarck Gov.
“We’ve always had that pressure that we gotta be one of the best teams,” says Patton. “So, I think by now, there is no pressure. We just got to go out and do our thing, and with the guys we have and the competitiveness and with the grit, I have no doubt that we will live up to those expectations.”
“They’re somewhat used to that,” says Skytland. “And we just try to have an approach that we take every game one game at a time no matter who we’re playing, and I think that expectation, they’re used to it and because of that, they’re able to live up to it.”