Judge: Mr. Addams, a universal truth holds any attorney
who represents himself has a fool for a client.
Gomez: And I stand fervently before you, with God as my
witness, to declare I am that fool.
* * * * *
Gomez: Has anyone ever told you you have the most
beautiful brown eyes?
Morticia: Of course not. My eyes are blue.
Gomez: No wonder!
Poor Gomez is confused. Who wouldn’t be? With each hot Arizona breeze he bobbleheaded from fifth starter to long reliever to the depths of Columbus ‘depth’ and back again. In a thrilling anti-climax, he finally won the last rotation spot despite the Indians’ seeming contrarian wishes and is set to make his first start April 11.
Why do the Indians struggle to come to grips with the obvious and sublime already in their midst? What exactly is the trouble with Gomez?
Maybe it’s his arm. He throws 90-91, a sinker/slider type guy who yields a decent share of hits and walks and won’t awaken napping scouts with a beep on the radar gun or embarrass many batters with a strikeout. Sort of like what Aretha sang about, r-e-s-p-e-ct. Sort of like what Mitch Talbot got none of, r-e-s-p-e-ct (hitters can be rude).
Except Gomez is not Talbot (for an Indians fan hope is the most poignant of human emotions). His two major league seasons are almost mirror images:
G W L IP H ER BB SO WHIP ERA
2010 Season 11 4 5 57.2 73 30 22 34 1.65 4.68
2011 Season 11 5 3 58.1 73 29 15 31 1.51 4.47
But look deeper. Both his BB rate and K/BB ratio improved significantly last year and if two bad games are removed he pitched to a 2.92 ERA over 49.1 innings. Still, the Indians treat him like the Browns treat Colt McCoy.
Was it really that difficult for Acta and Antonetti to chose between Gomez, Slowey and Huff? Slowey was 0-3 with a 6.75 ERA in 12 official spring innings and toasted himself with 7 runs on 7 hits in 5 innings against AAA competition in his final audition. Huff staged his usual tease/disappoint routine and a hamstring pull on March 29 closed the door on his chances, if he had any.
Rumors are the Tribe continues to search for additional starting pitching. A sound endeavor, if the help actually helps. However, the problem with roster juggling is what’s juggled inevitably gets dropped (Newton talked about this in Fantasy Baseball Rule 101: Do Not Tinker).
The Tribe needs to build its future now and not DFA young players for longshot journeymen like Henricus van den Hurk. Gomez is only 24 and needs/has earned a chance to develop.
Gomez struggled early. In three April appearances including two starts (one bad), he went 0-1 with a 6.23 ERA and caught the bus to Columbus, where he won 10 games. In two spot starts for the Indians in May and August he went 1-0 and allowed a single earned run in 11.1 innings. He followed up with four straight wins in September which lowered his season ERA to 3.52 but then faltered badly in Detroit the last week of the season (8 runs in 4.2 IP for the loss) to elevate his year ERA to 4.47.
This Spring Gomez showed improved depth and bite on his slider, kept the ball down and posted a 1.37 ERA in 19.2 innings.
Why can’t we like this guy?
It reads here Gomez has a solid year and, as some hack once said, all’s well that ends well:
Female Guest: My, but you are a real ladykiller.
Gomez: (grins) Acquitted!
The Addams Family (movie, 1991)
Addams Family Values (movie, 1993)