The Red Sox have signed outfielder Jonny Gomes, who turns 32 today, to a two-year contract worth $10 million. It is a substantial raise for Gomes, who earned $1 million with Oakland last season.
Gomes had a career year last year, his best since his rookie season in 2005. He hit .262/.377/.491 (140 OPS+) in 333 plate appearances. An increase in his walk rate gave him the highest OBP of his career. Gomes had a severe platoon split in 2012, hitting much better against lefties (.299 average, .974 OPS) than righties (.209 average, .715 OPS).
Gomes also played a brutal left field. According to Dave Cameron (Fangraphs), Gomes "is basically as bad as an outfielder can possibly be while still being considered a passable part-time player at the position".
The price tag for this cog in the 2013 machine won't break the bank (though it seems high) and we do need more than Jacoby Ellsbury in the outfield, but this is a pretty uninspiring move.