Bio: Gary Randall

Gary Randall is a St. Petersburg, FL native, growing up where sunshine, warm temps and baseball were givens. Arguably one of the most prolific MLB Spring Training sites in history, St. Pete. hosted the New York Yankees (1947-1950 & 1952-1961 –  Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, Mantle, Maris, Ford, etc.), St. Louis Cardinals (1947-1997 – Stan Musial, Bob Gibson), New York Mets (Tom Seaver) and now the Tampa Bay Rays having trekked through there over the years. Being born in 1952 (please don’t do the math) one can see that a number of those Hall-of-Famers were seen and idolized by yours truly as a youngster, none, however, more idolized than Mickey Mantle.  

Attended grade school and junior college locally, playing both baseball & basketball before moving on to finish schooling and athletics after a 4-year hiatus. On field/court highlights during that period included high school conference championships each year in baseball with no earned runs allowed during a senior season of pitching and a “Cinderella” season of hoops missing the State Tournament by a game. Of note on the baseball side – still friend, classmate and battery mates with Tom Zimmer, son of baseball icon Don Zimmer. 

Junior College brought on more hard court accolades than did the diamond, including a 59 point game (no 3 point line) and among the Top 10 scorers Nationally until later in the year an ankle injury dropped the scoring average to 27 PPG, ranking second in the state. After being recruited by mid-level D-1’s in basketball, a sabbatical of sorts ensued for four years. 

At the age of 24, with no college eligibility remaining other than with NAIA colleges, was awarded a full scholarship (1/2 Baseball, 1/2 Basketball) follow a tryout at a small AL college (Birmingham-Southern College) and finished my  playing career…other than a stint in an Independent Professional Baseball League. 

On to graduate school at the U of Tennessee and a grad assistantship in baseball working with/under then pitching coach Mark Conner – Asst. Coach 1974-79, Head Coach 1988, 1989. Conner later served as the NY Yankees Pitching Coach and coached with the Blue Jays, Diamondbacks, Rangers and Orioles. 

Upon completion of a Master’s Degree, Vanderbilt offered an opportunity to coach, to teach and to serve as Assistant Director of Campus Recreation. In those days, Vandy had 3-4 assistants, all part-time, but not something that hindered us from becoming the 1980 SEC Baseball Champions. George Weicker who has a dugout at Davidson College bearing his name was one of the other assistants at that time. 

Four years later a small college head coach’s job opened up in AL and the next six years were spent there, with only moderate success in terms of W-L, but much more success in recruiting players who would be given pro opportunities in baseball. In 1987, six players signed professional contracts (4 drafted, 2 free agent signs). It was about that time that the handwriting seemed to become more legible that evaluating talent was a much more a held skill than actually coaching those players within the confines of a team. During the time as head coach, the following players played for opposing teams we matched up against – Bo Jackson, Rafael Palmeiro, Will Clark, Bobby Thigpen, Jeff Brantley, Frank Thomas, Gregg Olson – to name some of those most well-known.

The next stop was the best fit both for my skillset and for my personality – Major League Baseball Scouting. Starting out with the MLB Scouting Bureau (part of MLB proper and under the MLB Commissioner helping all 30 MLB Clubs), I was charged with covering TN and KY. A few years later my area became TN and NC over to I-95 and then to NC/SC. Age mid-60’s pushed a move to anything not full-time and thus came affiliations with the New York Mets and now the Los Angeles Angels – now in my 34th year of scouting.  

Top big-leaguers scouted within my area of coverage during their high school and/or college careers (excluding players scouted while they played in/for) USA Team(s), Puerto Rico Winter League, Arizona Fall league, MILB coverage, Perfect Game National Events, etc.) –  Todd Helton, HS and College, Madison Bumgarner, Andrew Miller, Ty Wigginton, Adam Warren, Cameron Maybin, Daniel Bard, Dustin Ackley, Chris Iannetta, Matt Wieters, Evan Phillips, Carlos Rodon, Josh Hamilton, Brian Roberts, Cory/Kyle Seager, Brett Gardner, Trea Turner, George Kirby, Spencer Strider, Emilio Pagan, Zac Gallen, Cedric Mullins, Jordan Montgomery, Jordan Lyles, Jackie Bradley, Clarke Schmidt, Whit Merrifield, MacKenzie Gore, Hunter Harvey, Marcus Stroman, Wil Myers, Wil Crowe, Cal Raleigh, Tommy LaStella, among numerous others.

Saving the best for last, 1) Saving relationship with Jesus Christ, 2) Married for 38 years to Cyndi (Allen) Randall. 3) Blessed with two children (Jamie-37 and Jordan (Randall) Norman-31). Jordan along with her husband Lane have given us our two granddaughters, Sutton 3 ½ and Merritt 1.