Neifi Perez isn't the only former Royal in the ALCS spotlight. Last night former Royal Alexis Gomez was the hero with an rbi-single and a two-run homer, as the evil Tigers roared (Federal Law dictates Tiger-based pun must be used) to a 2-0 series lead.
Jon Paul Morosi profiles Gomez's big night today in the Detroit Free Press, including this note:
Well, here's a quick bio: He's 28 years old. He's from the Dominican Republic. He's a natural outfielder. And on Wednesday, at least, he was the Tigers' designated hitter. Gomez called it "the biggest chance I had in my life, in my career."
In 2002 Gomez was a loyal Royal farmhand in Wichita (you know that incredibly convenient AA affiliate the Royals just discarded for some random place in Arkinsaw) who hit .295/.359/.466 in over 500 PAs. He earned a late season callup, going 2-10 in 5 games with the highly memorable 2002 Royals.
Gomez then spent a summer in Omaha, hitting .269/.307/.407 with the O-Royals. In 2004, still with Omaha Gomez struggled to a .251/.285/.392-halt. Still, the Royals brought him up that September, and he played in 13 games with the 2004 team, hitting .276/.323/.310 in 31 PAs.
In October of 2004 the Tigers claimed Gomez off waivers and he's bounced from Toledo (love that city) to Detroit (not so much) the last three years. He can't really hit, considering he's 28 and owns a .259/.308/.342 career line in 168 career appreances at the major league level. Still, he had his moment last night, and his random one-game appearance as a power hitter may propel the Tigers to the World Series. Once again, your humble scribe asks, Can We Acknowledge its Random Now?
Of course, in an otherwise fine piece, Scott Miller at CBS Sportsline gives credence to the idea that this was all part of the Tigers' Master Plan, complete with the this-began-months-ago angle and few funny quotes from Leyland.
And you thought nothing came of the Byron Gettis, Brandon Berger, Dee Brown Generation, didn't you?