“I can’t imagine not playing the game and won’t stop until forced to,” says Gay.
Growing up in Marseilles, IL, he enjoyed other sports, but baseball was always his favorite. He began playing when he was four-years-old. From an early age he knew he wanted to play baseball forever.
“Once I realized I was decent at it, I took it more seriously and then worked my butt off day after day to improve every aspect of my game”, says Gay.
After pitching his first year at junior college, he had to get Tommy-John surgery after suffering an injury to his throwing arm. Gay recovered after 18 months of rehab before he was able to pitch competitively again.
Like all great athletes who overcome set-backs, Gay draws inspiration from multiple areas of his life. He dedicates most of his success to his family who has always encouraged him to keep playing, but music and quotes have also inspired him.
“I’m a strong believer in reading quotes from either famous athletes, coaches, and basically anyone who can inspire me to be a better person and athlete,” says Gay, “I couldn’t live without music. Many great musicians wrote songs that are perfect for getting pumped up before a game, or to bring you up from a bad mood.”
His teammates are an inspiration to him, too. Multiple players mention how this is the most unselfish team any of them have played for. When asking any of this Spartan baseball team who is going to help the team the most, they all respond by saying, “Everyone has been putting in time to get better.” Gay is no different.
“I can’t really name any single players to make a successful team,” he says, “But as a whole, the team will be successful and only improve more and more as the season progresses.”
Gay is unsure of what this 2012 baseball season will bring him. He currently has one more year of eligibility, but has hopes to be drafted to play professional baseball within the next year. Ever since he realized he has the talent to be a professional baseball player it has been his main goal, but he has a back-up plan.
“If baseball does not work out, I want to graduate with my degree and become a high school or college coach,” says Gay, “I can share my knowledge and love for the game with other kids who share the same dream as I did when I was their age.”
For now, Gay plans on leading his team to the NCAA College D-3 College World Series. Every college baseball team dreams of making it to the college World Series. Aurora University is currently ranked No. 25 in the country and has the potential to win it all. If the Spartans win the championship game of the World Series, Gay’s dreams will most likely become a reality.