Tommy Wilson was the Mets 19th-round selection in the 2018 MLB Draft out of Cal-State Fullerton. He split the 2019 season between High-A St. Lucie and Double-A Binghamton, where he went 8-7 with a 3.80 ERA over 113.2 innings pitched.
Some Mets fans know Wilson as the son of actor Tom Wilson -- who famously played Biff Tannen in "Back To The Future" -- but he's his own person and working hard to make the big leagues.
SNY caught up with Wilson in Binghamton to talk about his upbringing up until what got him to Double-A in his first full professional season.
On his upbringing and getting into baseball
"Very tight family. I started playing, well, my parents made me play baseball because I didn't really have many friends, so they wanted me to do some form of an extracurricular activity. At first I didn't even like it honestly, but even at like 5 or 6 I realized I was good at it so I stuck with it and grew to love it. I grew up in Los Angeles and played at Notre Dame High School, played at a few different colleges and ended up here."
What he learned from his father (actor Tom Wilson) that he can attribute to baseball
"I think what I learned the most was what show business is about and the kind of work he had to put in and the kind of mentality he had to have. I think it's similar to professional sports, really that mentality of grinding and doing your own thing and not worrying about what other people have to say or what they are doing. He had to grind his way to get to where he got to and it's super similar to professional sports and professional baseball."
On his draft process
"The draft process for me in regards to the Mets was interesting because I had not heard from them almost at all until Day 3 of the draft. I had phone calls for the first couple of days with multiple teams but heard nothing from the Mets. The third day came around and it was right before practice before we were heading to Super Regionals. I got the call from my agent and the Mets wanted to draft me in the 19th round for this slot value and all that and I was like, perfect, I'm in! It was crazy that I had no idea that the Mets were interested, but it worked out."
On his experience in Brooklyn
"I had been to New York once when I was a little kid, but never had a real taste of what it was like there up until going to Brooklyn. Brooklyn was great, awesome fans, great facility and a great clubhouse and all that. It was really nice having that as my first pro ball experience. It was very busy and I had a lot to learn as far as organization, routine and planning out my day. It was different too because I was a reliever in Brooklyn and now I'm a starter but it was just a matter of adjustments, but it was a great first season for pro ball and a really good spot to be in."
On making it to Double-A in his first pro season
"I went into Spring Training assuming I would be going to Low-A Columbia and that was the goal. I expected I would start in Columbia and hopefully by the All-Star Break, or just at some point in the year, make it to High-A St Lucie. Out of Spring Training they needed some pitchers in St. Lucie, so I ended up skipping Columbia and going straight to St. Lucie.
In St. Lucie what I learned the most was that I had a problem mentally overthrowing because I am not a guy who is going to blow my fastball by guys. I was like, OK, this is High-A now, I need to rear back and throw my hardest fastball but it didn't work, because I was leaving the ball over the plate and it doesn't matter how hard it is. I realized I need to pitch my game, which is location and movement and I made a quick adjustment which worked out.
Then I got here to Double-A and I almost did the same thing where I said, 'This is Double-A, I need to do something different because these guys are way better.' It took me a couple months to realize that it's honestly the same game, the same hitters, just a different place. Learning to stay within myself and with my strengths, which is pitchability, location and movement. Just getting to that point in my head helped me have more success here. I still have a lot to work on."
Scouting Report of himself
"I am a competitor every time I pitch. I leave my heart out on the field and there's nothing I like to do more than pitching. I am an emotional pitcher and give 100% for the team every time out. I am more of a pitchability guy, 89-91 on the fastball, maybe hit 92 mph. I'll mix in my off-speed pitches, which are curveball, slider and changeup. The changeup is probably my best secondary at this time. Just trying to induce weak contact because I am not going to strike out a bunch of guys out but I am going to eat innings and be a competitor and leave it all out there."