1. How long
have you been playing softball in the NKY,Cinci area?
I grew up playing softball with older guys in the school yards but to actually
play in an organized league it has been about 20 years.
2. Who are some of the teams you have been associated with in the
started with our church team that was coached by Clyde "Soapy" Stafford that used to pitch for the Suds, then when he was
no longer coaching the church team, I traveled and played for him for a little while, then I kind of started my own team
in the late 80's known as the Saints. Since then I quit coaching for all the obvious reasons and started playing for a Frisch's
team. I then went to a team called the Broken Toys, after that I went to Hail Tile, then to Angilo's and now I'm back where
I started, coaching my own team.
3. Okay John, first things first here. I want to say that I think you are
a tremendous hitter. I like that you are a power hitter who also knows how to hit when the HRS are gone. That is almost a
lost art. The only thing that bewilders me is some of your HR totals at the end of the year in the softball news.
A year or two ago you were right up there at the #1 or 2 spot in Cincinnati HR leaders. That I dont question. But the totals like, (correct me if I am wrong) 200 and something or
150 something is just remarkable. Are these correct? And if so why arent you getting paid to play because a player with
that type of ability shouldnt play for fun?
I was out for awhile because of
my knees and back, so I umpired because I wanted to be around the game. While doing that I watched some of the better hitters
and found out if I hit them farther I wouldn't have to run as much. I started back playing with the Broken Toys and hit 99
HRs the rest of that year for them only. Then people started to notice me even though my average dropped a little and I couldn't
field a position near as good as I used to. The next 2 years my son and I wanted to see how many I could hit in a year
so I counted all of them no matter who I played with as long as they counted for the team. It was a way to get my family to
come out to watch and involve them in what I enjoyed and also so I could start playing more. My son would go get
the balls after a HR and my wife would keep the stats. After that the only reason I reported them to the paper was to get
a sponsors' name in the paper. Last year and this year the totals only include my teams.
I don't get paid to play and that
may be a goal of mine in the future, but a guy I really look up to, Roscoe Backus, told me that at the higher levels when
you do poorly in a couple of games that there is a lot of pressure and stress put on you, whether you do it to yourself or
others do it for you. Also remember, as all the guys that HR totals mean a lot to, say time and time again, that if I moved
up and was hitting against better pitchers I wouldn't hit as many HR's. Although we play Freeze, Lucke Homes and some other
good teams on Tuesdays and I still don't do to bad.
4. How many nights do you play and how do you determine your Hr totals? Do you count
every one you hit regardless of what team you play for or are all those Hr's with the team you were currently playing for?
have answered part of this in the previous question but I do play alot. This year I play double headers 3 nights a week. I
play in the B league at Expressway, a C/D league at Expressway and a 3 and a 5 HR league at Rivershore. I hate to go to the
park, drive 30-40 minutes to play 1 game that could be over in 4 innings. You know though I ask a lot of people that remark
on my playing to much, "Why don't they play more" and they say because of my wife, to much money, or no teams to play on.
I don't have any of those problems so I play when I can for as long as I can.
5. John, I have to admit, though I have seen you play many times
I havent had the pleasure of seeing the Saints play but just once. So fill me in and those reading this interview on what
we should look out for when it comes to the Saints in 2003?
I think we are one of the only D teams to play a 5 man infield, we have great power as a team and we have a lot of versatility.
The last couple of years if 1 guy was missing everyone was out of position, this year we not only have 11 guys that want to
play every weekend, but if 1 or even 2 are gone we can play and not cheat ourselves by playing out of position. Actually Tuesday
nights is our normal team, every other night we play just to get my subs and friends in so they can play with all the guys
they enjoy being around.
Are you guys sanctioned D this year? If so, are you looking to step up because it seems they would be wasting
you, with the 0 Hr rule in D.
We are sanctioned D and we will
probably stay there until we win something. I would love to move up, shoot we are the only D team to play Chases Roosters
last year and Dan Smith this year. I LOVE playing teams that are better than us and teams that no one thinks we can beat,
to me that's the only way you get better. Then again I also stay in the lower because I want all my team to have the chance
to go to a World Tournament and have a chance to tell their kids 10 years from now, how well they did. Also as a team we vote
on everything that might effect our team. I really don't think I am being wasted in D, actually I think it makes me a
better hitter trying to keep it in the park.
7. Yourself having the type of raw power that you possess
at the plate, to me it would be interesting on your opinion of the Superbats. (Easton Synergy, Ultra 2, etc..)
You were hitting no doubters long before those bats, so I am curious if you are for or against these bats that are so explosive?
they make em I swing em! I think where we are at is good, Keep the low compression ball and the bats or go to the 30 dollar
bats and let's hit 50 cores. I think it has to be on a National level and done at the end of the year before everyone spends
money on new bats for next year. I really don't care but I don't want to go to Vegas or Florida and have teams using
better bats than us, so lets set a standard and stay with it. I mean everyone stay with it, I swung a bat that was a TPS team
bat a couple of months ago and It was suppose to be a 28 ounce bat now it has like a 3 1/2 ounce endload and the guy
sold it to a recreational player for 150 dollars. Now that guy is hitting like a beast. Here is my top bats (my opinion)
5. Genesis and
8. Who would you say is the Saints biggest rival?
After the City Slam fiasco I would
say it is TPE, before that it was Kidwell, Clark heating.
9. This is a fill in the blank question.
biggest misconception about John Tomlinson is __________?
I enjoy only hitting.
I would love to play the field but you have to keep
everyone happy and eventually after keeping everyone happy it's been to long to get back out there and still be competitive,
so now I have a good enough team that I've started getting back out there.
10. Below are a list of positions.
Without using any Saints players list by each position the player in your opinion that best fits as the best at each position.
This will be John Tomlinsons 2003 All star team.
Thats tough I don't know many
names just faces, and I have a "D" team and a true all star team.
1B Tony Bauereis
from Jeff Wyler (sorry no name?) Rob
SS Scott from Kneflin Insurance Brandon
3B Demo from Tina's Roscoe
P Brian from Tina's
C Odie from NKY
OF Troy from Clarke Htg Darren
OF Tina's OF used to play Coed also? Daryl
AH Shawn from 2 and Out John
Coach General Fernbach Bill
In your opinion who would you say is the most under rated player in the area and why?
I will have to use one of my own
here sorry, I would say Brian Chase. He has always played hardball and has that kind of swing but I am gonna work on that,
and the young man has so much range at second that it would be silly to play him anywhere else even though he is decent everywhere.
List some good things and some not so good things that are involved in softball today?
to much power is given to the umpire. I am fine with the profanity rule at some parks but it always seems one team gets
away with a little more than the other. I have umpired and understand the pros and cons but it is getting more and more subjective
and for God's sake know the rules. Next is the cost, I have ran many different types of businesses and I know that the people
are in business to make money but there has to be a happy median. One of the good things, I love to see the park owners in
the park mingling and talking to the patrons. Another high note is that I think the points system and the worth bucks programs
reward the people that spend more money to play in bigger tournaments instead of just going to Round Robins. not including us
Below are a list of parks. Next to each one rate each park by using the 1-10 scale, with 1 being a dump and 10 being the field
Pastime Park 5
Township Taverns 3
John go ahead and list me your top 5 in D.
4. Cum get's um
5. Jeff Wyler
15. If you had to use one word describing
the way the Saints play the game of softball what would it be?
Fun Unless it's an NIT then it's
16. Below are a list of names and things relevant to yourself and the game of softball.
By each one use one word that best describes each one in your opinion.
John Tomlinson Competitive
Riverstar Park TimeWillTell
Fisher (Huddy Park) Fixerupper
Softball News Onesided
Hitting the middle
Dan Wagner(formerly PD at Riverstar) Vengeful
John, with the way you hit, why havent you stepped up to the majors divisions? I mean you hit with the best of them?
think I've hit that in a prior question but I had 1 knee surgery done this year and expect to have the other one done at the
end of this year so I can be more active on the field and the basepad, then I want to find a team that while being competitive
still has a good time without all the egos flying around. Until someone in that situation calls me up I'll probably have
my own team and play as high up in the ranks as the team will let me get them.
18. Do you have a certain
sport idol? If so who is he/she?
in order to be your best you have to have confidence in yourself, without being a butt and I heard an interview with Michael
Jordon that really hit home so I guess he is my sports idol.
19. John, this is a new question and it is just for fun basically. So
please be honest. What is your most embarrasing moment in your career of playing softball?
Well here it goes, I had just
started pitching alot and faking the batter, in the middle of all this I lost my partial plate so I pitched a meat ball and
when everyone was watching my outfielder retrieve the ball I reached down got my partial and put it back in my mouth, mainly
because I didn't have pockets. Needless to say I was spitting mudd the rest of the game. I still don't know if anyone saw
me but that was a long time ago when I actually cared what people thought of me...
20. John this your chance to rant. This is not
a question at all but a chance for you to comment on something that you may have wanted to comment on that I didnt ask. Feel
free to say whatever. If you leave it blank I will assume I did my job.
I guess this is really to the
softball news and all the people out there writing about softballs decline. When I see all the people I grew up with and ask
them why they are not playing I get several answers but it always comes back to the economy! It cost more to play and there
are less and less sponsors willing to put out the money. Companies are closing so they definantly can't spare extra money
to pay for teams that the players don't work for them. Wives have to work so their time at home, they want to spend with their
families, also wives don't want to get off work, cook, and run the kids so dad has to help out and can't spend all night at
the park. I have even heard that the family has to share a car and it can't be sitting at the park all night. So some guys
quit but most just play one or two nights a week instead of the five they used to play. Same guys, less softball at more parks
come on it don't take a genius to figure it out especially with the new generation spending more of it's time in front of
home video games and TV. Just ride by the neighborhood basketball courts that we grew up on, they are desolate because kids
have different interests and are not playing sports.