The way Carlos Gomez figures it, his home run count stands at 17 for the season. "I hit 13, and it's four that I steal," said the Milwaukee Brewers' centerfielder/cat burglar. "That's 17. That's how I calculate it." It was difficult to dispute that math after Gomez ended a 4-3 victory Monday night over the Cincinnati Reds at Miller Park in thrilling fashion by robbing Joey Votto of what would have been a two-run homer with yet another highlight-reel, leaping catch at the wall. Brewers manager Ron Roenicke could not remember seeing a game end with an outfielder stealing what would have been a go-ahead home run. "Any time Votto hits a ball up in the air like that, you're not sure. The ball carries well here, as we know," said Roenicke. "Even when 'Gomey' got to the wall, I couldn't get a good feeling for it. I was hoping it wasn't too far." For a few seconds, only Gomez knew he had the ball. He didn't immediately show it to the umpires, as is customary after robbing a home run, and Votto stopped at second base and pointed to Gomez, asking the umps to make him produce the ball. Gomez gladly obliged. "I told the umpire, 'The ball is right here. What do you want?'" Gomez said with a broad smile. "Any time in that situation, when you save the game like that or you hit a walk-off home run, it's amazing. I never hit one, but I steal a home run to win the game, and that's something special. You can't wait to get home to see it over and over." Now Votto knows how Colorado's Carlos Gonzalez, Philadelphia's John Mayberry Jr. and the Mets' Marlon Byrd feel. Those were the others robbed of homers by Gomez's remarkable leaping ability this year, and Washington's Bryce Harper recently was a victim as well of extra-base thievery. The person who heaved the biggest sigh of relief when Gomez came down with the ball was Brewers closer Francisco Rodriguez, who came that close to blowing his first save of the year after issuing a two-out walk to Derrick Robinson. Instead, Rodriguez remained a perfect nine for nine with the aid of his centerfielder. Asked what he thought off the bat, Rodriguez said, "Homer. No doubt. He hit it, and I put my head down. I went to turn around, and I saw 'Gomey' leaning against the wall just waiting to jump. "From the mound to center field, you have a pretty good view. So I saw it go in the glove. I don't even remember what I was thinking. Just surprised. It was an amazing catch, no doubt. I've been around a long time and I can't remember any game like that." Gomez, however, could remember a game ending like that. Playing for Minnesota on Sept. 16, 2008 at Coors Field, he leaped against the fence to rob Yorvit Torrealba of a game-winning homer and prevent closer Joe Nathan from blowing the game.
Carlos Gomez saves Brewers with clutch grab in ninth
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel | Jul 9