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Gary Thomasson

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Gary Leah Thomasson

  • Bats Left, Throws Left
  • Height 6' 1", Weight 180 lb.

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[edit] Biographical Information

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Gary Thomasson played nine years in the major leagues, almost all of them with California-based teams. The one time he left California was for part of 1978, when he played for the World Series champion New York Yankees for part of the season and in the 1978 World Series.

He discovered weight training midway through his career in MLB.

In 1981 Gary Thomasson became the highest-paid player in Nippon Pro Baseball when he signed a three-year, $1.2-million contract with the Yomiuri Giants, $130,000 more than Koji Yamamoto, the highest-paid Japanese player that year. Thomasson hit 20 homers (Yamamoto hit 44) and batted .261/.317/.468; he whiffed 132 times, four shy of Lee Stanton's Central League record, despite sitting out the last week of the year. That season he was nicknamed "The Giant Human Fan", a nickname Japanese writers later applied to Reggie Smith. Thomasson led the CL in Ks. The next year he did even worse, hitting .187/.279/.227 and injuring his shoulder and knee, ending his baseball career.

In his 1993 science fiction novel "Virtual Light," William Gibson defines a "Thomasson," derived from the name of an American baseball player who was a great failure in Japan, as a "useless and inexplicable monument."

Sources: japanbaseballdaily.com, "You Gotta Have Wa" by Robert Whiting

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