Posted at: 07/11/2014 5:34 PM
Updated at: 07/11/2014 10:01 PM
(ABC 6 NEWS) -- After spending more time in a Honker uniform than any other player in club history, Reid Roper's Northwoods League career is down to just 28 games.
"My favorite memories are just the day-to-day grind of coming to the field and hanging out with my teammates," Roper said.
"Reid has always been a fan favorite here, and it makes it easy to invite him back every year," Honkers manager Matt Bowman said.
After this season, Reid's name will go down in the record books for the most games ever played with the organization.
"I'd say it's a blessing by God," Roper said. "Just the fact that He upholds every ligament in my body, every beat of my heart, and every breath I breathe, to play nearly 200 games is just a testimony to Him keeping my body in shape and allowing me to play each and every day."
But it's more than the number of games he's played that defines Reid - it's his character and the impact he's made on the community.
"I'd say Reid Roper as a baseball player is probably one of the most quality individuals I've ever coached," said Bowman.
Roper will graduate from the University of Illinois next spring with two dreams. One is to play professional baseball, and the other is to be a teacher.
Whichever path he chooses, one thing is certain - his time in Rochester has played a role in preparing him for life ahead.
"Experience in all kinds of situations," Roper said. "When the team's playing well, how to handle yourself; when the team's going through bad moments and drought, learning how to deal with those things as a baseball player. I think it has really helped me in my career, not only on the field but how to handle success and failures in life."