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Thread: NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

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    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

    No biggie here, but I saw this in this a.m.'s NY Times, a little piece on how well Brett Tomko handled Tony Gwynn in his career with a little help from Pete Harnisch.

    The Plan That Stopped Gwynn
    By Jack Curry

    Brett Tomko, who tossed three scoreless innings in his longest stint as a Yankee on Wednesday night, had an interesting strategy when he faced Tony Gwynn from 1997 to 2000. Tomko said he pumped fastballs right over the plate.

    When Tomko was with the Cincinnati Reds in 1997, he spoke to Pete Harnisch, a teammate, about Gwynn. Gywnn, who is now in the Hall of Fame, was in the midst of winning eight batting titles.

    “He told me to throw it right down the middle,” Tomko said.

    Tomko questioned Harnisch’s advice, but Harnisch explained it.

    “He said that Gwynn was so used to hitting pitches that were out of the strikezone that I was better off throwing it down the middle,” Tomko said. “He said Gwynn wouldn’t be expecting it, so he’d probably roll it over and hit it to the right side or pop it up.”

    In Tomko’s first game against Gwynn on Aug. 7, 1997, Tomko threw fastballs over the plate. Gwynn grounded out to first and popped up twice to the infield.

    “I looked into the dugout at Pete, and I was like, ‘Are you kidding me?.’ ” Tomko said.

    The strategy remained successful for Tomko: He held Gywnn, a .338 career hitter, to 2 hits in 12 at-bats.
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    Mr.Redlegs is my homeboy Eric_the_Red's Avatar
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    Re: NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

    I think many Reds pitchers since than also adopted the "throw it down the middle" approach to every hitter.

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    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

    cool story.. too bad Pete couldn't give Tomko advice on every hitter

    Harnish was a smart guy. One of my favorite players when he was here.
    Thank you Walt and Bob for going for it in 2010-2014!

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    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    Re: NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

    Quote Originally Posted by REDREAD View Post
    cool story.. too bad Pete couldn't give Tomko advice on every hitter

    Harnish was a smart guy. One of my favorite players when he was here.
    That's what I thought too. I always thought Harnisch would make a good pitching coach. I just found an article about Harnisch from an NJ magazine that I think I'll post seperately. Very smart player though, I completely agree.
    “In the same way that a baseball season never really begins, it never really ends either.” - Lonnie Wheeler, "Bleachers, A Summer in Wrigley Field"

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    Passion for the game Team Clark's Avatar
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    Re: NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

    Quote Originally Posted by redsmetz View Post
    That's what I thought too. I always thought Harnisch would make a good pitching coach. I just found an article about Harnisch from an NJ magazine that I think I'll post seperately. Very smart player though, I completely agree.
    Pete was OUTSTANDING in the clubhouse. Looked to as a leader, pitched some bug games and was a tremendous tutor. The Reds would be LUCKY to have him in the fold.
    It's absolutely pathetic that people can't have an opinion from actually watching games and supplementing that with stats. If you voice an opinion that doesn't fit into a black/white box you will get completely misrepresented and basically called a tobacco chewing traditionalist...
    Cedric 3/24/08

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    High five! nate's Avatar
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    Re: NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

    Quote Originally Posted by Team Clark View Post
    Pete was OUTSTANDING in the clubhouse. Looked to as a leader, pitched some bug games and was a tremendous tutor. The Reds would be LUCKY to have him in the fold.
    Bug games really test a player's mettle.

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    Haunted by walks
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    Re: NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

    Quote Originally Posted by nate View Post
    Bug games really test a player's mettle.

    Just ask Joba.

    I'm surprised Gwynn didn't adjust to the two dudes who throw it down the middle, but maybe he didn't face them often enough.

  9. #8
    Hey Cubs Fans RFS62's Avatar
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    Re: NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

    Quote Originally Posted by BCubb2003 View Post
    Just ask Joba.

    I'm surprised Gwynn didn't adjust to the two dudes who throw it down the middle, but maybe he didn't face them often enough.

    Yeah, I doubt it would have worked very long against Gwynn.
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    RZ Chamber of Commerce Unassisted's Avatar
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    Re: NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

    It would have been interesting to see that depicted on the Fox graphic that shows a hitter's hot zones.
    /r/reds

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    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: NY Times: Interesting Anecdote on Brett Tomko & Tony Gwynn

    Confirmation bias is a wonderful thing.
    Games are won on run differential -- scoring more than your opponent. Runs are runs, scored or prevented they all count the same. Worry about scoring more and allowing fewer, not which positions contribute to which side of the equation or how "consistent" you are at your current level of performance.


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