Tommy Hanson Looks To Continue His Torrid Pace

By Daniel Collier
Apr 2, 2010

With the start of the baseball season just days away, pitcher Tommy Hanson is preparing for just his second season (first full) in the big leagues. A year ago the young phenom was still battling at this point just to prove he deserved a spot in the Atlanta Braves starting rotation, he’s now viewed by many as the ace of the staff.


Ultimately getting called up in June of last year, Hanson didn’t take long to impress, shutting out both the Red Sox and Yankees just weeks into his debut. More than living up to the hype Hanson was flat out dominant in his 20 big league starts and routinely drew comparisons from manager Bobby Cox, to another pitcher he managed years before… You may have heard of him, future hall of famer John Smoltz.

Finishing the season with 2.89 ERA and 12-4 overall record, Hanson was voted runner-up for the National League rookie of the year award and most believe he would have won had he been with the Braves all season.

At just 23, and only 20 major league stars under his belt, the 6 foot 6, 230 pound right-hander has already assembled a list remarkable professional achievements. However, nothing however personifies the type of pitcher Hanson is better than his start against the Boston Red Sox. Sick with 104-degree fever just the night before the game, Hanson showed up at the stadium the next morning and pitched six shutout innings against one of the best offensive teams in the league. Pitching coach Roger McDowell would later say; “The great ones are the ones that don’t miss starts. That’s the key to being a top-of-the-rotation guy. A lot of guys have talent. The great ones have a presence – a very self-assured presence. That combination is fairly rare.” I think it’s safe to say that Tommy fits this description.

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