Around the Bases with Greg Holt

Inside Carolina caught up with sophomore pitcher Greg Holt following North Carolina's 11-1 loss to Virginia on Friday. The Clemmons, N. C. right-hander held the Cavaliers hitless through 2 1/3 innings, while also contributing a hit of his own from the batter's box.

On the season, Holt has contributed 10 1/3 innings in relief while only giving up two earned runs on nine base hits. He has a 1.74 earned run average and has struck out 10 batters while holding opposing hitters to a .237 average. The righty also has a home run and a stolen base to his credit, while batting .205 in limited duty as the designated hitter and at first base.

Q&A WITH GREG HOLT

Can you discuss how your season has been starting off playing as the designated hitter and pitching in relief, then recently playing a vital role in the bullpen...
"It is good. I am trying to do anything I can to get on the field and get some playing time and try to help us win. With our bullpen being depleted with Bryant [Gaines] being hurt and having [Patrick Johnson] throwing more innings, but it feels good to get on the field and to get on the mound somewhere I am comfortable since high school and feels good just being able to compete and help us win."

What is it like to be a two-way player in preparing to compete on the mound and at the plate during practice?
"We did a good job - I managed my arm and Coach Forbes talked with me at the beginning of the year to make sure that I would be able to manage my arm. Develop my throwing with the pitchers - the pitchers throwing program. I have been able to do both in high school and I have a pretty good arm. It has held up for me and I keep getting off the mound every time and taking care of my arm - icing it. I try not to go out there and do useless throwing - going out in the outfield and get balls in the air or try to take ground balls and throwing them as hard as I can across the diamond."

What kind of mindset did you have after struggling with the bat as the DH early in the season?
"It is difficult at the beginning. I was really pressing wanting to succeed so badly at the plate. I learned that failure is going to come with the game and these guys are really good. I'm out here battling in the cage trying to find my swing. Right now I feel pretty good in the box and pretty comfortable so hopefully I can continue to get better with the bat."

How difficult do you think it is for the Tar Heel baseball fans now to have to root for the Duke Blue Devils again to give the Heels a shot at qualifying for the ACC Title game on Sunday?
"I'm sure it is pretty tough for most of them. I'm sure they will be pulling hard for Duke and hopefully we will go out there tomorrow and win and have a chance at playing in the championship."

Obviously the Tar Heels still have a lot of baseball left in the season - certainly hosting a regional in Chapel Hill and most likely a super-regional as well. How are you looking forward to the postseason in the renovated Bosh?
"It is awesome. We put that on our goal sheet for the beginning of the year. We want to host a regional and host a super regional. We are looking forward to the announcement coming out on Sunday."

How has the team felt about the fan support for the Heels here in Durham for the ACC Tournament?
"It is awesome. It is like playing a home game."

How did you take the news that the ACC Tournament was not going to take place in Fenway Park and was relocating to the Durham Bulls Athletic Park?
"I was a little disappointed honestly - I am a Red Sox fan and kind of have always wanted to play in Fenway. It is great to be able to stay in your house instead of a hotel. It is nice to have great fan support especially when you come to the ballpark every day."

What is it like as a college baseball player when the Major League Draft takes place during your postseason?
"I don't really try to pay any attention to that much - the coaches and the other guys can. But it is pretty cool to realize that you are playing with guys that will be drafted in the first round."


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