Now that that Cincinnati Reds have benched left fielder Jonny Gomes, manager Dusty Baker was asked about his plans. The answer is he’s going to take the approach they likely should have been doing since the start of the season: matching up hitters against pitchers, primarily between Chris Heisey and Fred Lewis.
“Unless, someone steps up and just takes it,” Baker said. “But we do need Gomes’ sock in our ballpark. Jonny’s a streaky guy. He’s been working his butt off to get his stroke back together and get his mind right. He’s a guy who can carry you for a few weeks. He’s working hard. He’s not shelved completely. We’re trying to get him back in sync.”
The first time I read that quote from Baker, I envisioned Gomes wearing just one sock when he played left field. I would think that would make him wear through one cleat faster than the other.
But Baker’s right, Gomes’ power has been missing. Lewis doesn’t have the pop. Heisey might, but he hasn’t had the chance to show it yet. Really, this is Heisey’s best chance at getting more starting time and jumping out of the pinch-hitter role he’s done so well at. Until then, we’ll just have to rely on Jay Bruce, I guess.