Jonny Gomes can be any number of things on a baseball team. He is a great clubhouse guy, one of those players who is right in the forefront cheering on their teammates. He is a solid mentor, as Christian Colon credited Gomes after Game Five of the World Series for helping him stay ready and focused in case he was called upon by the KC Royals. Gomes is also a solid bat off the bench, capable of hitting left handed pitching and providing a bit of power.
Gomes has other aspects to him as well, that on certain teams may not sit well with others. He believes that it is perfectly acceptable to punch people in a grocery store if they are staring at him, as he said in an interview on 98.5 The Sports Hub a couple years back. He has a persona that is a strange mix of a WWE wrestler and Captain America.
On a team where character and clubhouse chemistry may have been more important than anything else, Gomes was also a true character. He has been for almost his entire career, as that player who is not afraid to speak his mind and just genuinely appears to have a good time wherever he goes. It is easy to see why Gomes would be the type of player that would be loved in a clubhouse.
Yet, there is more to Jonny Gomes than his persona and hijinks. Quite simply, Gomes just wins wherever he goes. In five of the past six seasons, teams that Gomes has been a part of have made the playoffs. In addition to winning the World Series with the KC Royals, Gomes also won a title with the Red Sox in 2013. He has seemingly become another Eric Hinske at this stage of his career.
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Gomes’ time with the Royals will be noted more for his epic celebration rantings, where he called himself the ‘un-politically correct person,’ than for his accomplishments on the field. In his 34 plate appearances, Gomes produced a .167/.235/.233 batting line, striking out 14 times. Yet, Gomes is one of those players whose value cannot necessarily be measured by statistics. Instead, he proves that there is something to be said for the intangibles that are so often overlooked in our stat driven view of the sport.
Players like Gomes certainly have a value on a team like the Royals. As someone who knows his role, he can serve as a mentor for the younger players, doing whatever has been asked of him while making sure that he, and others, remain prepared. After all, when Colon came through in his only at bat of the postseason, it was Gomes that he credited for keeping him focused and ready to produce.
Jonny Gomes may not have had a plate appearance for the KC Royals during the postseason, but he still made his mark on the team in more way than with his epic microphone toss.