Spotlight: Sam Tinkham

Sam+Tinkham+%E2%80%9916%2C+as+a+starting+pitcher+and+captain+for+the+baseball+team%2C+is+hoping+to+have+fun+in+his+last+season+of+his+career.+%0APhoto+by+Minh+Tran

Sam Tinkham ’16, as a starting pitcher and captain for the baseball team, is hoping to have fun in his last season of his career. Photo by Minh Tran

Sam Tinkham ’16, as a starting pitcher and captain for the baseball team, is hoping to have fun in his last season of his career.  Photo by Minh Tran
Sam Tinkham ’16, as a starting pitcher and captain for the baseball team, is hoping to have fun in his last season of his career.
Photo by Minh Tran

As both a starting pitcher and captain for the men’s baseball team, Sam Tinkham ’16 has a lot of responsibility on his plate this year. The S&B’s Sports editor Sam Catanzaro sat down with Tinkham to gain some insight into the mind of a leader. At the end of the day, despite wanting to win, Tinkham expressed that all he wants is to enjoy his final season in the company of his teammates.

S&B: What is your position and role on the baseball team?

Tinkham: I am a starting pitcher, and I am also a captain; with that comes some extra responsibilities including leadership stuff. I have to meet with the coach more and try to be that connective link between the coaching staff and the rest of the team. … I am kind of like the messenger in some ways.

How would you describe your pitching game?

I am accurate and multidimensional. I have a pretty good amount of off-speed pitches meaning I change speeds pretty well. … I can hit both the inside part of the plate and the outside part of the plate.

Do you have a favorite pitch?

My changeup is definitely my favorite pitch. It has been something that has been my bread and butter since my sophomore year. In most important situations that is the pitch I go to.

Do you have any favorite MLB pitchers?

I really like watching Chris Sale. I think what he does is amazing. My favorite pitcher ever is Andy Pettitte. He used to pitch for the Yankees but he is retired now. … My favorite now is Marcus Stroman for the Blue Jays. He is kind of an up-and-comer and missed last year. I think he is going to be a really good pitcher and I really like his mechanics.

Is there anything about Stroman’s game that you would like to see in your game?

Aggressiveness and how he approaches batters and is really confident in all of his pitches. It doesn’t matter the count or the situation he is in. I would like to be confident in all those situations and just go after hitters all the time.

Do you have any pre-game rituals or routines?

I do. Starting about 40 minutes before the first pitch of the game I start a very specific routine where I go through a set of stretches and a set of running. I do the same amount of throws when I am warming up and the same sequences in the bullpen before the game. Then right before the game we get eight warm up pitches before the game starts and I have all eight scripted out before every game so they stay the same.

Going into your last season do you have any goals both as a team and individually?

Individually I just want to enjoy it. I have put a lot of work into it during the offseason and over the course of my career so I think at this point it is just more about enjoying it and celebrating the wins and losses with my teammates because those relationships mean a lot to me. As a team I hope we can have a pretty good year. I hope we win the Conference. We are good enough to win the Conference. We got knocked out early last year so I hope we can make up for that. The senior class is pretty close and I have a pretty prominent role on the team so it would be nice to finish on a high note with them.