BOSTON — You know the scene from Happy Gilmore when Happy steps into a batting cage and repeatedly takes baseballs off the chest? Jonny Gomes would probably be OK with a similar technique in the batter’s box if it meant a Red Sox win.
Fortunately for Gomes — and the children watching who emulate their favorite big league stars — he didn’t need to use that approach on Friday. Instead, Gomes stepped up as a pinch hitter in the seventh inning, worked himself into a favorable count, got a pitch he could hit, and came through with a huge RBI single to propel the Red Sox to a 7-5 win over the Blue Jays.
“I’m a grinder. I’m willing to take one off the neck for the team,” Gomes said. “You definitely gotta be confident [and] I’m sure [Blue Jays reliever Brett Cecil] was confident too. I think I was more confident than him in that at-bat. I just did what I could for our guy to touch the dish.”
Gomes’ self-assessment is spot-on. The term “grinder” really embodies the hustling outfielder, an