Jonny Gomes: Age 30 - 6 years MLB Service
How he became a Nat: Acquired via trade from the Cincinnati Reds for minor-league OF Bill Rhinehart and minor-league pitcher Chris Manno on July 26th.
The Raw Numbers:
AVG - .204
XBH - 8
RBI - 12
K - 31
The key stat: Slugging Percentage - .366, exactly what you want from the player you acquired to be a power bat off the bench. You can't fault Mike Rizzo who thought he was getting the player who slugged .431 last year and .541 the year before - though the trend is quite evident in retrospect.
Best game: August 9th against the Cubs at Wrigley. Gomes showed a flash of what the Nats hoped they were getting by going 2 for 4 with a HR, 2B, and 2 RBI. His 2 run humdinger in the 6th ended up being the difference in a 3-1 Nats' win. The Nats would have loved 10 or 11 more games like this one, unfortunately for the Nats he only had 3 other games with a WPA over .1, and in one of those games his contributions were entirely in the field.
Worst game: The. Very. Next. Game. Jonny went 0 for 4 with three strike-outs in a 4-2 loss to the very same Cubs. August 9th and 10th form a microcosm for his 2011 Nats season. Hope for a power bat followed by offensive ineptitude.
Capball Grade: F. He simply could not get the job done at the plate. The Nats needed a power bat from the right handed side capable of coming off the bench to platoon in left and center. 2 out of three in this instance is bad. His XBH and slugging numbers were dreadful and he did absolutely nothing coming off the bench racking up ZERO pinch hits. He also could have brought the Nats a supplemental pick if he maintained his Type B free agent status, which he did not.
2012 Nats Status: Jonny is arbitration eligible and has said publicly he would "probably take it" But given that he is no longer a Type B free agent, the Nats, in my humble opinion, will simply let him walk and not risk offering him arbitration because there is really no value in either outcome. Either he accepts and we pay him to be a mediocre-at-best 4th or 5th OF, or he declines and we get nothing.
[Ed. Note - When creating the label for this post, we had no Jonny Gomes label, meaning we never felt he made enough significant impact to warrant a mention - a sign of his performance on the 2011 Nats]