A Hot Hitting Carlos Gomez Could Be Great Either Way for the Astros.
The Houston Astros recent success has been based on a team effort, but it’s hard to ignore what Carlos Gomez has done recently. When I went down to Corpus Christi for Memorial Day weekend, I got an opportunity to meet Gomez, and I couldn’t help but notice that he had some glasses on. They didn’t look like prescription glasses, and I just thought it was just a phase he was going through.
Maybe, when he went on the disabled list, he went to the doctor, and the doctor said, no more contacts for you. Gomez had worn contacts but was having trouble picking up the pitches, most notably the breaking pitches. While he was with the Hooks, he experimented with the glasses and found that he saw the ball better.
When he returned to the Astros, he was more confident at the plate at starting to swing a better bat. The power returned little by little until he is waiting for the pitch a little better and staying within himself not trying to do too much. On AM 790 this morning, A.J. Hinch came on and told people not to give all the credit to Gomez’s glasses, he has changed his approach at the plate, and the results have followed.
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I was never a big fan of the trade to get Gomez, and I think the loss of Josh Hader and Brett Phillips was too much for a declining Gomez. Hader is on the cusp of his big league debut, and Phillips is excelling in the minors. I did understand the need to to make the trade last year with George Springer on the DL with the fractured wrist but did they give up too much to get Gomez and Mike Fiers.
However, a healthy Gomez could steer the Astros back into the playoff picture in 2016. After two months of blah, he could be the bat that the Astros need in addition to the possible additions of A.J. Reed and/or Alex Bregman. The Astros are closer to the wild card versus the AL West champs, so the Astros could make a run and gamble on a one game playoff series like they did last year.
The Houston Astros could benefit from a productive Carlos Gomez either as buyers or sellers in the upcoming MLB Trade Deadline season.
In the past 14 days, Gomez has a slash line of .267/ .371/ .600/ .971 with three homers and six runs batted in. While you may bot be impressed with the batting average, you have to keep in mind that he has a career .257 batting average. A high batting average has never been Gomez’s cup of tea. Instead, he focused on the on-base and slugging percentages in his career. He is the player that the Astros have stocked their shelves with recently.
The Astros will have the next month or so to figure out whether they are sellers or buyers. If they do become buyers, all the other teams will be after the second overall pick in the 2015 draft in Alex Bregman. But if Gomez is hitting like he has, the Astros will be less likely to pursue a big bat. If the Astros become sellers, a hot Gomez could fetch a better prospect package than a slumping one.
This is why I have rooted for Gomez to succeed, because either way, he will help the Astros more if he is producing. I speak for all Astros fans when I say, welcome back Gomez to becoming a reliable baseball player again, just keep it up. Let’s see if Astros’ fans are booing Gomez or cheering him with the home series starting with the Reds tonight.
***Stats from Baseball-Reference***