Drafted in the 18th round by the Devil Rays out of Santa Rosa Junior College back in 2001, Jonny Gomes established himself as a Major Leaguer four years later with a third-place Rookie of the Year finish. In his 13-year career, Gomes played for the Rays, Reds, Nationals, Athletics, Red Sox, Braves, and Royals. He also played for Japan’s Rakuten Golden Eagles.
Gomes was perhaps best known for his hard-nosed style of play. As Gary Shelton of the Tampa Bay Times put it, “There is nothing laid-back, nothing calm about Gomes. He lives his life as if there are two outs in the ninth and the bases are loaded and the bars are closing and the fuse is burning and the air is running out.” From 2005-15, Gomes was hit by a pitch roughly once every 49 plate appearances, the 12th most-often in MLB.
Serving primarily as a left fielder and designated hitter, Gomes hit 162 home runs in his career. He hit at least 17 home runs in a season six different times, usually in fewer than 120 games. A right-handed hitter, Gomes terrorized southpaws throughout his time in the Majors. The list of pitchers he’s taken deep includes CC Sabathia, Andy Pettitte, Zack Greinke, Madison Bumgarner, Mike Mussina, Curt Schilling, Chris Sale, and Randy Johnson.
The biggest home run of Gomes’ career came in Game 4 of the 2013 World Series for the Red Sox against Seth Maness and the Cardinals in St. Louis. Despite not being in the original starting lineup that day, Gomes crushed a three-run shot that led to Boston’s win. The Red Sox won it in six games, and Gomes’ patriotism was on full display at the White House. Gomes would go on to pick up the second ring of his career in 2015 with the Royals before retiring in 2016.
Earlier this month, Gomes joined BaseballCloud as its Director of Strategic Partnerships. Part of his role involves the expansion of the company’s optical tracking system, Yakkertech. You can follow Gomes on Instagram here and connect with him on Cameo here.
Today, we’re proud to host Jonny for a live chat with MLBTR readers. Click here to join and ask a question!