Farrell: Gomes 'doesn't get enough credit'

Farrell: Gomes 'doesn't get enough credit'
August 4, 2013, 12:45 pm
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(AP Images)

BOSTON -- It's no coincidence that the majority of Jonny Gomes' most memorable moments in a Red Sox uniform have taken place late in games, according to Farrell.

He has two walk-off home runs this season and he hit a two-RBI single late against the Mariners on Thursday to help the Red Sox finish off their dramatic come-from-behind victory, 8-7.

On Saturday night, he came through big late in the game once again, throwing out Cliff Pennington at the plate on an Aaron Hill single in the top of the eighth inning to maintain Boston's one-run lead.

It was his second clutch defensive play in less than a week. In the top of the ninth on Thursday night, Gomes smashed into The Wall in left field snagging an Endy Chavez liner that would have scored another run for Seattle.

Farrell believes it's a combination of Gomes' fearlessness and his baseball intelligence that makes him so effective late in games.

"The defense has ben better than first thought," Farrell said Sunday. "I will say this: Most every situation we find ourselves in with him, he's probably worked through it in his own mind and anticipated what's about to take place. Whether it's a pinch-hit at-bat in the ninth or a couple plays defensively, he's already worked it though in his mind and envisioned what the outcome will be.

"Sometimes he doesn't get enough credit," Farrell continued. "He's an intelligent player. It's why he's able to execute in those moments late."

The numbers back up Farrell's assertions. In the field he's been more than serviceable when the Red Sox need him most. And at the plate, the ninth inning is statistically Gomes' best inning. He hits .417 with a .517 on-base percentage and an eye-popping 1.309 OPS.

Gomes is one of the players the Red Sox signed this offseason who brought with him a reputation for being good in the clubhouse. Farrell said Gomes' lighthearted approach to the game shouldn't be misunderstood for carelessness.

"Some people might judge the book by the cover, and it's not an accurate one in this case," Farrell said. "He's a smart player. He has a feel for the history of the game to those that are currently in it to every situation that comes up. He's very much in tune. He's in tune with every move that [bench coach] Tory [Lovullo] and I discuss. He thinks the game like a manager. As a role player, you have to. That's why he's very good at it."