By C. Trent Rosecrans
Jonny Gomes is headed home. The Petaluma, Calif, native has agreed to a deal with the Oakland A's, CBSSports.com Insider Jon Heyman reports.
Gomes, 31, will serve as a designated hitter and extra outfielder for the A's, especially against left-handed pitching. In his career, Gomes has crushed lefties to a tune of .281/.375/.501, while hitting .224/.306/.427 against right-handed pitchers and .242/.299/.366 overall.
Last season Gomes hit .209/.325/.389 with 14 homers for the Reds and Nationals in 120 games and 372 plate appearances.
Gomes hit 21 homers as a rookie in 2005 with Tampa Bay and 20 the next season, but as the team improved his playing time dwindled. He was inactive for the 2008 postseason run and signed with the Reds aftr the season. He hit 20 homers in his first season at Great American Ball Park. He was traded to Washington in July.
Gomes is also considered one of the best clubhouse guys in the game. Even though he wasn't on the Rays' active roster in 2008, he was the team's biggest cheerleader from the bench. He was also seen as a positive influence on some of the younger players as the Reds won their division in 2010. He could take over the "good guy" role in Oakland that Hideki Matsui held last season.
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