Zach Joyce finds his way back to baseball

The Joyce brother duo is back to sharing their love of baseball together and they’re also sharing that with their hometown community in Knoxville with a baseball clinic Friday, July 8.
Zach Joyce returns to baseball after two years away from the game
Zach Joyce returns to baseball after two years away from the game(Tennessee baseball (Tennessee Athletic Communications))
Published: Jul. 7, 2022 at 5:51 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Fighting the stigma that surrounds athletes and mental health. After two years away from baseball, Zach Joyce said he’s ready to take the hill for Tennessee. He said he’s able to make this comeback after opening up and talking about his battle with depression and anxiety.

Zach said his battle with depression and anxiety kept him from playing. He said his struggles originated from his Tommy John surgery in January of 2020 prior to arriving in Tennessee.

Then just a few weeks ago teammate Jared Dickey took to Twitter, detailing his battle with depression.

Two athletes at the height of their careers have chosen vulnerability in hopes of helping others.

“That’s a big thing that I want people to know is that you can talk about it and it’s something that people go through,” said Zach. “Dickey has gone through it, you know people have gone through it. I talked to JP Arencibia, he’s an All-Star catcher, and he’s been through the same thing. You know it’s something that’s normal and it happens and you just need to be able to talk about it. Balling it up is what makes it worse, and that’s kind of the position I was in when I stepped away. So being able to open up and talk about it has helped me so much.”

Now Zach is eagerly awaiting this new opportunity to be a part of the pitching staff for Tennessee, once again.

“It’s just awesome and I’ve said just how grateful I am to be able to come back. And just how supportive the coaching staff has been about everything about my mental health, not even about baseball, just me feeling better. It’s just awesome the support I’ve gotten about it,” said Zach.

His twin brother and Tennessee pitcher, Ben Joyce, said he’s excited to see Zach return to the game.

“It was awesome knowing he was out there supporting me this year. I knew he kind of wanted to get a way from it so we kind of grew a part in that way. And now that he’s back again, I mean we’ve been playing baseball together since we were three, so it’s exciting to see him play and have that new energy. I’m excited to see what next year is like for him,” said Ben.

The duo is back to sharing their love of baseball together and they’re also sharing that with their hometown community in Knoxville with a baseball clinic Friday, July 8.

The clinic is held at D1 Knox.

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