Red Sox close to deal with Gomes

Jonny Gomes batted .262 with 18 home runs in 99 games for the Athletics in 2012.
Phelan M. Ebenhack/Associated Press
Jonny Gomes batted .262 with 18 home runs in 99 games for the Athletics in 2012.

The Red Sox are close to a two-year deal with journeyman outfielder and designated hitter Jonny Gomes.

Gomes, who turns 32 on Thursday, hit .262/.377/.491 for Oakland last season with 18 home runs and 47 RBIs in 333 plate appearances and 99 games.

Gomes is a righthanded hitter who has always hit lefthanders well. He hit .299 with a .974 OPS against lefthanders last season in 164 at-bats. He hit .209 with a .715 OPS against righthanders in 115 at-bats.


Gomes has primarily played left field in his career, and not very well. But the Sox appear willing to take that risk in return for righthanded power.

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Gomes was the regular left fielder for the Reds in 2010 and had a solid season, hitting .266/.327/.431 with 18 home runs. The Sox would be Gomes’ fourth team in the last three seasons. He started his career with the Rays.

He signed as a free agent with the Reds in 2009 then was traded to the Nationals in 2011. Gomes had a $1 million deal with Oakland last season.

Gomes was involved in two on-field brawls in 2008, one with the Yankees in spring training and another with the Red Sox on June 5 when he pummeled Coco Crisp after Crisp charged the mound.

Gomes was a positive clubhouse presence in Oakland, however, and has a good reputation among former teammates.


Given that the Sox also need a right fielder, signing Gomes would not necessarily end their interest in Cody Ross.

But Ross and Gomes have similar profiles and signing both players is unlikely.

The Sox could use a platoon in right field and employ Ryan Kalish or Daniel Nava in that mix.

CSNNE had the first report of Gomes negotiating with the Sox.