Nats Designate Stairs for Assignment; Gomes Activated

Posted by Dave Nichols | Wednesday, July 27, 2011 | , , , | 0 comments »

The Washington Nationals announced today they added OF Jonny Gomes to the active roster and designated veteran pinch-hitter Matt Stairs for assignment.

Stairs, 43, batted .154 with one double and two RBIs in 56 games this season. The 19-year veteran reached base in just 19 of his 74 plate appearances for the Nats (.257 OBP).  The MLB all-time leader in pinch-hit home runs, Stairs was brought in to be a dangerous pinch-hitter and solid veteran presence in the clubhouse. He may have fulfilled his duties in the clubhouse, but on the field he did nothing but struggle.

Gomes is hitting .211/.336/.399 with 11 homers and 31 RBIs in 265 plate appearances for Cincinnati this season.  But he mashes left-handed pitchers to the tune of .333/.439/.537 in 2011 and will most likely form a solid platoon with Laynce Nix in left field and be a valuable right-handed hitting pinch-hitter, though Gomes is regarded as one of the worst defenders in the game today.

Gomes will be active for tonight's Nats game against the Florida Marlins.

Another shoe will drop Friday, as a spot on the 25-man roster must be opened for Chien-Ming Wang, scheduled to start against the New York Mets that night.  Barring a trade of someone on the current active roster, it's likely that LHP Ross Detwiler will be sent to AAA-Syracuse and LHP Tom Gorzelanny will be moved to the bullpen to activate Wang.