Gomez feels 100 percent, eager to help Crew
Center fielder set to come off disabled list for Saturday game against Cubs
CHICAGO -- It's been a frustrating two weeks on the disabled list for Brewers center fielder Carlos Gomez, who was forced to watch his team slump through the worst opening month in franchise history. Beginning Saturday, he can help them try to dig out.
Declaring his right hamstring back to 100 percent strength, Gomez said he's ready to run when he's activated from the DL in time for Game 2 of a weekend series against the Cubs.
"For the last 15 days, I've been really frustrated. I couldn't do anything to help my team move forward," Gomez said. "I think when I'm in the lineup, it's a little bit different. We're going to be a little bit better. The team has started to play better. We still lost some games, but it's not like before."
As of Friday afternoon, manager Ron Roenicke was still debating where to reinstall Gomez to the batting order. Second baseman Scooter Gennett (hand) and catcher Jonathan Lucroy (toe) remain on the DL, so the Brewers' lineup looks a lot different than it did on April 15, the night Gomez strained his hamstring in St. Louis. He began the season as Milwaukee's leadoff man.
"It's hard to predict right away what will happen," Roenicke said. "That's what we'll have to figure out, whether to get [Gomez] back at the top of the order or to move him somewhere."
Gomez batted .235 with a home run, six RBIs and three runs scored in eight games before he was hurt.
The Brewers might not be the only team with eyes on Gomez as he returns. Should Milwaukee enter a rebuilding phase in advance of the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline, Gomez would be attractive to other teams. He has finished in the top 20 of National League MVP Award balloting in each of the past two seasons, and he is signed for $8 million this season and $9 million in 2016.
"I'm not looking at that," Gomez said. "I'm working, and that's not my decision. I'm only here to prepare myself to play and perform for my team. Whatever happens, happens. The office and the coaches have the last call. Wherever I go, I just want to play. Right now, I'm here, and I want to do everything I can to help my team."
Gomez said he would do so at full speed beginning Saturday.
"I don't have any restrictions," Gomez said. "I'm going to run, steal and bring my energy."