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Wednesday, June 26, 2024

Rick Tomlin had long coaching career: Baseball Profiles

Rick Tomlin 1990 Elizabethton Twins card

Rick Tomlin missed out on a pro baseball career, so he was happy to get an assistant coaching one at Manatee Junior College, he told The Bradenton Herald in February 1977.

"I'd rather be playing, naturally," Tomlin told The Herald then. "I still feel like I can play but maybe I wasn't meant to play pro ball. For a while it bothered me that I wasn't playing, but now that I've got this job, it makes things a whole lot better."

Tomlin ended up having some job or another in baseball over the next four-plus decades, including more than three of those in the pros.

Tomlin's career began our of Florida Southern College and Manatee. 

He was twice drafted as a player, in the 14th round of 1971 by the Senators out of Wythe High School in Virginia, and in the second round of the 1972 January secondary draft out of Manatee, but he did not sign either time.

 By 1977, he'd started his coaching career at Manatee. Aside from a couple seasons elsewhere, Tomlin stuck with Manatee through 1988 as pitching coach

For 1989, he joined pro ball, as a pitching coach with the Twins at Elizabethton. He stayed with Elizabethton through 1992, then moved to single-A Fort Wayne for 1993.

He joined the Yankees system by 1997 as pitching coach at AA Norwich. He made AAA Columbus for 1999, and became Yankees minor league pitching coordinator for 2002.

Tomlin moved to the Nationals and AA Harrisburg for 2005, then the Mets and short-season Brooklyn for 2009. 

By 2012, he was with the Brewers as minor league pitching coordinator. He explained his role to in 2016 as coming in to help the manager and reinforce organizational policies and philosophy.

"Most of the time I come in and interact with the staff, work with the guys for five days," Tomlin told "I come in for five days so I can see every starting pitcher, and that's it. Just help out."

In 2019, Tomlin moved to independent ball as pitching coach for the independent Long Island Ducks.

Rick Tomlin 1990 Elizabethton Twins card

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:4,387
Made the Majors:1,413-32.2
Never Made Majors:2,974-67.8%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors:575
10+ Seasons in the Minors:354

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