Thursday, June 19, 2014

My short Tony Gwynn story

I got to work a booth at the MLB Winter Meetings in Nashville a few years ago and I’ve walked past Tim Kurkjian at least three times now, getting his picture once, asked a few questions, but still wanted to know what he thinks is the greatest stat of all time. Next to the ESPN stage I got my chance. I said ‘Tim, I’m a big history guy like you, what do you think is the greatest stat of all-time?” I got him to stop and face me. He thought about it for a split second and said, “Ok, during a five year period, Tony Gwynn hit .338 when battling with two strikes…The league average with two strikes during those five years was .192… Gwynn wrote on his shoes 5.5 to remind him” I then nodded and interrupted Tim “the 5-6 hole.” Tim nodded back and said, “That’s how great of a hitter Tony Gwynn was.” I stood in awe, and then Tim started to turn around to head to the stage. I still had to ask him one more question for my own sake. I yelled out, “Hey Tim! Whose the greatest player of all-time?” He turned back around and gave me the answer I wanted to hear… “Babe Ruth” he said. “He did it as both a hitter and a pitcher.” I yelled “Thank you!” and walked away with a smile that lit up my booth at the trade show.