Jonny Gomes’ statistics with the Royals in 2015: 30 at-bats, 12 games, five hits, four RBIs, three walks, two doubles and one memorable speech.
When Gomes took the microphone at Union Station during the Royals’ World Series celebration, he gave a victory speech that still makes many fans smile when they think about it.
Gomes’ baseball career ended after the 2015 season, but current players are rallying behind his latest cause: to help communities in northern California that have been ravaged by wildfires. Gomes grew up there, and he has started a Go Fund Me page in the hopes of raising $1 million.
“I’ve played professional baseball around the globe but the 707 area code of Northern California is my home,” Gomes wrote on the Go Fund Me page. “My friends are there. My family is there. I grew up playing ball in the fields and streets of Santa Rosa, Petaluma, Sonoma, Napa and beyond. That’s why you see ‘707’ proudly displayed on my cleats. These people are my neighbors!
“Now I need you to help me give back to the thousands affected by this horrific catastrophe. Kids are without homes and schools. People have nothing but the clothes on their back. My hometown is a wasteland of ash and rubble. You and I are going to change that!”
Former Royal Christian Colon was one of the major-league players who tweeted a link to Gomes’ page:
The San Francisco Chronicle’s Susan Slusser reported that Gomes is having his 2 1/2 -ton M35 military truck shipped to help move destroyed vehicles and help clear roads.
Here is a look at the truck from 2013:
This is the message that Gomes recorded to go with his Go Fund Me page as he encouraged people to help: