Chicago Cubs made a painful but right move in moving on from Yan Gomes

Yan Gomes couldn't defeat the battle against time.
Chicago Cubs v Cincinnati Reds
Chicago Cubs v Cincinnati Reds / Jeff Dean/GettyImages

Veteran catcher Yan Gomes was designated for assignment on Wednesday to make room for Tomás Nido on the Chicago Cubs roster. The 36-year-old backstop was really struggling, hitting just .154/.179/.242 with a dismal -4 FRV (Statcast Fielding Run Value) and -6 DRS (Defensive Runs Saved). He was an overall -0.9 fWAR in 34 games.

Gomes was in his third year as a Cub and had become a beloved member of the organization. Pitchers had gone on record raving about working with him and how he helped them better their craft. One teammate who spoke very highly of him was Justin Steele, who sports a career 2.53 ERA with Gomes behind the dish. Steele has thrown more innings to Gomes (171) than any other catcher.

Last season, in addition to being a great veteran presence, he hit .267/.315/.408 in 116 games including .280 with runners in scoring position. Cubs fans on Twitter/X would yell “Gas Money!” with every clutch hit. He was honestly a big part of last year’s surge midseason.

A tip of the cap to Yan Gomes

Overall, Gomes appeared in 235 games as a Cub and hit .241/.279/.372 with 20 homers, 101 RBI and .651 OPS. For an older veteran catcher, he had his moments with the bat. His best defensive year was 2022 when he sported 3 FRV and 5 DRS. Even when the defense was not always at his sharpest, he was able to work with the pitchers very well. The Cubs' ultimate goal while in their transition period was bringing in a catcher who could help their staff and they got one in Gomes.

As they say, Father Time always wins. Gomes, at age 36, has been in the Majors since 2012 and has caught 8,486.2 regular season innings. It might not be Carlton Fisk levels, but that’s still a lot of miles. It was obvious it was time to move on with the struggles he was having. Even if still a great teammate and mentor to the pitchers, the play on the field was no longer justifiable to keep around. The bat speed was all but gone and the defense was shaky. Having two negative fWAR catchers on the team was really hurting the team.

Not sure if Gomes will get another playing job, but regardless best of luck to Gomes.