You won’t find the most influential stat of Brandon Gomes’ playing career on the back of any baseball card.
During five major league seasons with the Tampa Bay Rays between 2011 and 2015, the right-handed reliever racked up 173 appearances, 144 strikeouts and a 4.20 ERA. He was part of two teams that reached the postseason. He once drew a bases-loaded walk as a hitter, the only time in his career he reached base.
But it was something else that propelled Gomes into his post-playing career as a front-office executive, a second act that reached new heights Tuesday when the Dodgers announced the 37-year-old had been promoted to general manager.
As a player, Gomes was sent down to the minor leagues on 12 occasions in his five years with the Rays. And every time it happened, it piqued his curiosity about baseball operations a little bit more.
“Just the nature of my career, I was very average,” Gomes said recently with a chuckle. “I would get sent down or see different moves happen, so it was always interesting to me how the mechanics of it all worked.”
Barely five years removed from his playing career, Gomes looks at those times as a starting point for his current path, in which he has become the first Dodgers general manager to serve under Andrew Friedman, the team’s president of baseball operations, since Farhan Zaidi was hired by the San Francisco Giants…