Milo Tompkins Is a Finalist for the Carl Yastrzemski Award - 27 East

Milo Tompkins Is a Finalist for the Carl Yastrzemski Award

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Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County.   DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County. DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County.   DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County. DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County.   DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County. DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County.   DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County. DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County.   DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County. DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County.   DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County. DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County.   DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County. DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County.   DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County. DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County.   DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County. DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County.   DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins was named League X MVP this season playing for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team. That led to him being nominated for the Carl Yastrzemski Award as the top baseball player in Suffolk County. DREW BUDD

Ross junior Milo Tompkins.    RON ESPOSITO

Ross junior Milo Tompkins. RON ESPOSITO

Ross junior Milo Tompkins.    RON ESPOSITO

Ross junior Milo Tompkins. RON ESPOSITO

Drew Budd on Jun 7, 2023

Milo Tompkins is in good company.

The Ross junior starred for the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team this spring as its starting catcher, leading the team in every offensive statistical category that led to him being named League X Most Valuable Player. That, in turn, earned him a nomination for the aptly named Carl Yastrzemski Award, named after the most famous Killer Bee of them all and given to the best player in Suffolk County.

Tompkins certainly earned himself all of the accolades this spring. He was hitting as high as .651 at one point during the season, and when opposing teams started to catch on that Tompkins was for real, his batting average only fell to a still impressive .583. He finished with 37 hits, three of which were home runs, an OPS of .645 and he drove in 21 runs — which could have been higher had he hit in the middle of the lineup, but he batted leadoff for much of the season.

The winner of the “Yaz Award” will be announced this Monday, June 12, and Tompkins has some very stiff competition, perhaps some of the best the county has seen in quite some time.

Patchogue-Medford senior Josh Knoth is a favorite for it — he is expected to be drafted, fairly high, in the upcoming Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft — but there are other talented players in contention, including Bayport-Blue Point’s Brady Clark, Commack’s Chris McHugh and Babylon’s Daniel Madsen.

Tompkins, who just turned 17 last Thursday, June 1, said just being mentioned in the same group as those players is a feat in and of itself and whatever happens on Monday, happens.

“It’s definitely a great honor. Something I was not expecting — I was just playing,” he said last week on the infield at Bridgehampton. “But it’s definitely a good honor, it’s incredible.”

The one thing that makes Tompkins stand out maybe more than all of the other Yaz finalists, his head coach Lou Liberatore explained, is that he was a true MVP in a sense that if you take him off the Killer Bees and out of the lineup, they’re simply not going to win as many games. The other teams have the depth to make up for missing a player of such caliber.

“The truth is he’s carried our offense for the majority of the season,” he said. “For a large portion of the season, he batted over .600. The next closest guy was batting around .300, so he made up a good majority of our offense for a good length of the season.

“He’s a guy who has done all the right things from day one,” Liberatore added. “He works on his game all year round. He’s hit the weight room real hard, he’s the strongest guy on the team, and he’s a great captain for us, a great captain for the guys to follow.”

Tompkins is an East Hampton resident who has attended the Ross School his entire life. He started playing baseball in East Hampton Little League and eventually made All-Star teams and played on local Tomahawk travel teams. But when he reached middle school, things got a little awkward for him since Ross didn’t have any baseball teams. In seventh grade, he played for Pierson’s junior high team, but then in the fall of his eighth grade season he tore his ACL and other ligaments in his knee playing football. That following March, the COVID-19 pandemic hit, which he says actually helped him rehab his injury since there was no season that spring. By the time the next baseball season came around, the Bridgehampton/Ross baseball team was created, giving him a clear path to play the game he loves on a consistent basis.

In just two short years back on varsity after a 43-year hiatus, Tompkins and Liberatore have brought the baseball program back, qualifying for the postseason this spring, where the team defeated Port Jefferson for the county C/D title, and reaching the Class D regional final this past weekend.

“Ninth grade when Coach Lou put the program together, we didn’t even have a field yet,” Tompkins explained. “We were practicing by the playground. It’s really come a long way. I had no idea, I didn’t even know if I was going to continue playing baseball because of COVID, my knee, so I was in a weird place … it all came together and the rest is history. It’s been a hell of a ride so far. We’ve totally come a long way. I think it’s pretty incredible.”

What Liberatore said was “kind of scary” is that he doesn’t think Tompkins has hit close to his ceiling yet. Tompkins is a hard-throwing right-handed pitcher as well. He pitched a lot as a sophomore last season, but this season, with an infusion of arms, Tompkins wasn’t asked to throw all that much. With six players graduating this month, though, Tompkins is going to be asked to get back on the pitcher’s mound next spring as a senior and both he and Liberatore are excited about that.

“We really haven’t seen the full picture from him, but when we do I think it’s going to be scary,” Liberatore said. “He’s just meant so much to our team, for the stats, for being such a good leader. And yes, there are some great players in the other leagues, but I’m pretty sure he’s the only junior out of that bunch. I’m really proud of him.”

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