Gomez: Ready, Set, GO!
When the entire lineup explodes with production, you can be assured the cleanup hitter has not been silenced, either. Indeed, Gomez took part in the load of RBIs collected last night. He made a big inning even bigger with a swing of his bat. “The Tigers’ RBI King” took one more step towards becoming the league RBI King in the process.
“I had a great opportunity, and I just wanted to make sure I made good contact. They brought in a reliever right before I got up there, but I got my timing down and was able to put the ball in play.”
It was the fourth inning and the Tigers took a commanding 5-0 lead. With one out and runners on first and third, the Swallows brought in reliever Abe. Gomez took his second pitch, a slider, and drove it between shortstop and third. That was the team’s 6th run, and the onslaught that continued resulted in a 5-spot for the inning.
That brought Gomez’s RBI total on the year to 90. The gap between him and Hiroshima’s Eldred, the RBI leader, to 1. The Carp slugger has fallen into a huge slump, and the tides have clearly turned in Gomez’s favor. It’s just a matter of time before we celebrate the birth of “Gomez: RBI King.” The Tigers’ import slugger is also on the verge of making team history. The current team record for RBIs by an import in his first year is 92, held by Breeden (1976). Gomez is sure to pass that number by season’s end.
Eldred went hitless in three at bats, including two strikeouts, as the Giants’ Sawamura shut out the Carp. Playing at Koshien for the first time in a month, Gomez freely attacked the ball, focusing on hitting to the right side. He always does so when he regains his focus after a few bad games. During bad times, he tends to swing at balls thrown outside the strike zone. If Gomez can kick that bad habit, he’ll be fine.
He took a free pass each of his first two times up, and added another single to center in the sixth. As he gets back into a groove on home turf, look for he and the team to keep the good times rolling.