Rangers outfielder makes pair of fine defensive plays in win over Tribe
By Ryan Posner
ARLINGTON -- Carlos Gomez made a loud entrance to Globe Life Park when he smacked an emotional three-run home run in the first at-bat of his Rangers debut on Thursday. Since, though, he's been hitless and that continued with an 0-for-3 line in Sunday's 2-1 win over the Indians.
But Gomez was still able to make an impact in the win with two fine defensive plays in left field, including a running grab near the warning track on a Mike Napoli line drive in the sixth that ended the inning with runners on first and second.
"If we don't catch that baseball it's a different ballgame," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said.
Gomez's other standout defensive play came with one out in the fifth, when Indians third baseman Jose Ramirez sent a liner headed for the left-field wall. Gomez made a spectacular leaping catch and was able to hold on after banging up against the wall.
"To me, that's what it's all about," Holland said. "It was an all-around team game right there. I made my pitches, and when you're working as fast as I was, I felt like I kept the defense on their toes. Gomez is a [heck] of an outfielder. He made two sweet catches out there for me."
The Rangers plan on playing Gomez primarily in left field but he'll also see time in right field when Delino DeShields starts against left-handers. Banister thinks Gomez's skills translate no matter where he is in the outfield. He won a Gold Glove with the Brewers as a center fielder in 2013.
"[Gomez] has a great nose for the baseball. He sees the ball off the bat well with his footwork," Banister said.
Despite the 0-for-14 stretch he's in, Gomez said he's feeling comfortable at the plate as he adjusts to his new team. He was also in an 0-for-10 slump before being released by the Astros on Aug. 18.
"I've been working the last couple days with my hitting coaches and we've tried to put something together," Gomez said. "I know I haven't had the results the last couple games, but I'm feeling good at the plate."
Gomez is just happy he's been able to contribute to a Rangers team that was able to take three out of four from the Indians and are in first place in the American League West.
"When you do something to help the team win, it's something you feel excited about," Gomez said. " … The most important thing is that we won that series against [the Indians] and we'll be back here tomorrow."
Ryan Posner is a reporter for MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.