Kelby Tomlinson Starts His MLB Career With A Base Hit
Former Texas Tech shortstop Kelby Tomlinson began his Major League Baseball career just like any hitter could hope – with a base hit.
Tomlinson, who was called up by the San Francisco Giants on Monday afternoon, delivered a pinch-hit single in the 12th inning and later scored the go-ahead run in what amounted to be a losing effort as Atlanta answered with a two-run, walk-off home run in the bottom half of the frame for a 9-8 victory at Turner Field.
A member of Texas Tech’s 2011 club, Tomlinson laced a single to center field that set up a Buster Posey two-out RBI single later in the inning. He joined Roger Kieschnick, who also debuted with the Giants, and Joe Dillon as the only Red Raiders to record a hit in their first major-league at-bat since 2005.
Tomlinson, 25, traveled to Atlanta earlier in the day after receiving the call up from Triple-A Sacramento where he was hitting .316 with two home runs and 15 RBI in just 33 games. Tomlinson was previously promoted earlier this season from the Double-A affiliate in Richmond, Virginia, where he recorded a .324 average and 28 RBI in his 64 appearances. This is the seventh-straight year where a former Red Raider has debuted in the big leagues as Daniel Coulombe was called up by the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sept. 16, 2014. Tomlinson is the 29th former Red Raider to make his debut and one of 13 who have made it to the major leagues since 2006.
Tomlinson, who has played shortstop as well as third and second base in the minors, is the first Red Raider infielder to debut in the big leagues since Dillon did so with the then Florida Marlins on May 18, 2005.
Tomlinson was named college baseball’s top defensive shortstop during his lone season as a Red Raider in 2011. He became the first Big 12 Conference player ever to earn the Rawlings Golf Glove Award that is presented by the American Baseball Coaches Association.
Tomlinson, a native on Elgin, Oklahoma, also earned All-Big 12 second team honors after hitting .307 overall with 43 RBI and 21 stolen bases as Texas Tech’s everyday shortstop. He was best known for his work up the middle where he committed just nine errors in nearly 300 chances. His 212 assists still rank fourth all-time in Texas Tech single-season history.
The Giants drafted Tomlinson in the 12th round of the 2011 MLB First-Year Player Draft, making him the highest-drafted Red Raider shortstop since Cameron Blair (sixth round) in 2005.
[Source: Texas Tech Athletics]