The two pitchers haven't been teammates since 2013, but Sonny Gray admits that he learned plenty from veteran Bartolo Colon when the two were pitching together in the same rotation.
Gray came up with the A's in 2013, which was Colon's last season with the club. The Yankees' ALDS Game 1 starter said the biggest thing he took from Colon was just learning how to pace himself on the mound.
"It was the calmness," Gray said. "I was always a guy who was very high energy, very fast. I'm at my best when I'm able to slow myself down, take a large, overall game into small individual moments. Basically, just slow yourself down. Have a plan and know what you want to do and try to accomplish it."
In the 2013 postseason, Gray made two starts with Oakland, holding a 2.08 ERA over 13 innings, though he and the A's lost the win-or-go-home Game 5 to the Tigers.
"I was lucky enough to be on the team with Bartolo and watch him go out there and handle his business," Gray said. "He showed very little emotion. You know what you are going to get from him every time. Just because he showed little emotion doesn't mean he wasn't geared up and ready to go at all times. I was very lucky to have him in Oakland."
Colon, whose Twins were eliminated by the Yankees in the Wild Card game on Tuesday night, said the Gray was always eager to learn how to be a better pitcher.
"The thing about young pitchers like that is: It is not about how much I want to teach them, it is about how much they want to learn," Colon said. "Sonny Gray was one of those guys [that wanted to learn]. ... Usually, a pitcher would leave in the third inning, but he would stay throughout the whole game to see how I was pitching and studying me. I think that was the thing that he had in his favor, how dedicated he was to learning."