Former Buck Zach McKinstry Debuts with the Dodgers

McKinstry is the 247th former Northwoods League player to debut in MLB

Rochester, Minn. – Former Waterloo Buck Zach McKinstry, made his Major League debut for the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday, September 16, 2020. McKinstry is the 247th former Northwoods League player to reach the Major League level.

McKinstry, who played collegiately at Central Michigan University, played for the Waterloo Bucks in 2015. He was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 33rd round of the 2016 MLB draft.

In 2015 with the Bucks, McKinstry played in 58 games and hit .281 with three triples, nine doubles and three home runs. He drove in 21 runs and stole eight bases.

McKinstry began his professional career in 2016 with the Dodgers rookie level team in the Arizona League. After four games he was promoted to the Great Lakes Loons of the Lo-A Midwest League. For the season he hit .252 with three triples, five doubles and 39 runs scored. He drove in 14 runs and stole six bases.

In 2017 McKinstry began the year with Great Lakes and then, after 17 games, he moved up to the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes of the Hi-A California League. He would play in 82 games with the Quakes before ending the season with the Tulsa Drillers of the AA Texas League. For the season he hit a combined .239 over 114 games. He had four home runs, 21 doubles and one triple. He drove in 33 runs, scored 54 times and stole seven bases.

In 2018 McKinstry again moved from Great Lakes to Tulsa. He played in 76 games and hit .282 with seven home runs, four triples and 11 doubles. He stole two bases, drove in 24 runs and scored 39 times.

McKinstry began the 2019 season with Tulsa and then was promoted, after 95 games, to the Oklahoma City Dodgers of the AAA Pacific Coast League. Between the two clubs he hit .300 in 121 games. He had career-highs in home runs with 19, doubles with 24, triples with six and stolen bases with eight. He also drove in a career-high 78 runs.

McKinstry was placed in the Dodgers 60-man player pool for the 2020 season and was called up first in August and then again in September. In his Major League debut against the San Diego Padres, McKinstry entered the game as a pinch-hitter for Justin Turner and struck out in his only plate appearance.


The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Having completed its’ 27th season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 22 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, over 245 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time All-Star and 2016 Roberto Clemente Award winner Curtis Granderson, three-time Cy Young Award winner and World Series Champion Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS). As well as 2019 Rookie of the Year and Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and MLB All-Star Jordan Zimmermann (DET). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. For more information, visit or download the Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play.