Throughout baseball’s history, plenty of big, powerful grain silo-built players have showcased their size and prowess. Some of the names that come to mind are Tony Clark (6-foot-8, 205lbs), Corey Hart (6-foot-6, 240lbs), Dave Winfield (6-foot-6, 220lbs), Frank Howard (6-foot-7, 255lbs), Frank Thomas (THE BIG HURT!, 6-foot-5, 240lbs), the list goes on and on.
But in recent years, we’ve started to see an increased trend within professional sports regarding big athletes. Gone are the days of the big, lumbering but often stiff one-trick pony type of athlete. Advances in nutritional science and a focus on targeted training techniques have started to produce athletes that are not only big and powerful but also surprisingly pliable and fluid on the field of play.
Giancarlo Stanton is the (literal) poster child for this new crop of super athlete. On more than one occasion, Stanton has smashed a baseball so hard and far and high that the Florida Air National Guard had to scramble fighter jets to intercept the unidentified flying object when the ball wouldn’t respond to air traffic control.
And then we have the amicable 24-year-old Joey Gallo (6-foot-5, 235lbs). The Rangers’ third baseman/first baseman/left fielder is versatile and flexible, a combination one wouldn’t necessarily associate with a giant human. It’s one thing to notice his size and power on television or whatever streaming device is hot right now, and quite another thing when observed in real life. He may be easygoing when not playing baseball but he’s downright nasty when attacking a baseball’s soul.
Sure, the big knock on Gallo has been his strikeout rate (and that batting average) but we have also witnessed him sending baseballs to outer space. Will we see his home runs vs. strikeout rate start to sway favorably towards the former vs. the latter? Sure.
* Number of objects NASA has sent to the moon since 2015: ZERO.
* Number of objects Joey Gallo has sent to the moon since 2015: 48
* Number of home runs by Joey Gallo in 2017: 41 (5th in AL)
* Number of Joey Gallo’s 41 home runs in 2017 that were ever recovered: ZERO
The science here is irrefutable. Gallo is a certified baseball serial killer. But an aspect of his game that catches a lot of people off guard is his speed. Much like Giancarlo Stanton, Gallo is a product of the new crop of super athlete that focuses on nutrition and targeted training. My scientific calculations show me that while Gallo is listed at 6’5”, he plays like an 8’17” athlete. Irrefutable science is my thing, you see.
All this got me thinking.
During the off-season, what’s a typical day for Joey Gallo? So I put together a timeline that is based on nothing but solid science:
- 7:30am – Joey Gallo wakes up.
- 7:45am – a 40-oz protein shake is consumed.
- 8:30am – arrives at gym. Lifts an 18-wheeler above his head 49 times.
- 9:30am – breakfast at local diner. A 14 egg scramble and a dozen pancakes are consumed.
- 11:30am – arrives at tailor’s. Suits he bought last month need to be altered, again. 5 different tailors work 16-hour days exclusively on Gallo’s suits.
- 12:30pm – lunch at home. 2 roast chickens plus 5lbs of vegetables are consumed.
- 2:30pm – arrives at local track to run sprints. A fire truck and 11 firefighters are on standby in case he starts another grass fire with his blazing speed.
- 3:30pm – a 40-oz protein shake is consumed.
- 4:30pm – arrives at department store. Joey needs new pajamas every week. He keeps outgrowing them. This new pair fits just right.
- 6:30pm – a 40-oz protein shake is consumed.
- 8:30pm – dinner at home. Three 72-oz steaks and 5lbs of vegetables are consumed.
- 10:00pm – tries on new pajamas. Not even 6-hours after purchasing them, the pajamas don’t fit anymore.
Our large giant son is outgrowing his pajamas.
And he’s going to continue to grow. While the pajama dilemma is an issue that will continue to confound Gallo and his bank account, his strikeout rate and home run rate are sure to see marked improvements in 2018 (Gallo has, as of this writing, 2 home runs in Spring Training). The batting average will continue to improve, too. The days of Joey Gallo’s BA hovering pecariously close to the Mendoza Line is going to be a thing of the past.
Joey Gallo is growing. And that should frighten pitchers and tailors the world over.