CLEVELAND — Formerly a fleet outfielder, Anthony Gose returned to the majors five years later Monday night as a rocket-armed reliever for the Cleveland Indians, flashing 100 mph heat and fanning Royals slugger Salvador Perez.
Gose pitched 1⅔ innings, allowing one run with one walk and one strikeout in the second game of a doubleheader against Kansas City. Of his 39 pitches, seven zoomed into triple digits.
“His story is something that makes me smile, it really does,” Cleveland interim manager DeMarlo Hale said earlier in the day.
Now on the mound, the lefty zinged it.
Gose finished his first appearance by striking out Perez. In the first game, the Royals star hit his 46th home run, breaking Johnny Bench’s record for most in a season by a catcher. Perez’s homer tied for the most in the majors with Toronto’s Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
Gose hit 100 mph on the radar gun with his second pitch to Hunter Dozier to begin the fourth inning. Dozier drew a walk.
Gose retired Nicky Lopez on another line drive to left to begin the fifth before striking out Perez on a 98 mph four-seam fastball.
Gose was removed from the game by Hale, who congratulated his new pitcher, as did the other infielders on the mound. Gose also received a nice ovation from the crowd of 11,459 as he walked to the dugout.
Drafted by Philadelphia in the second round in 2008, Gose returned to the minors as a pitcher in 2017.
Gose is in his third year in Cleveland’s minor league system and drew attention with his performance at Triple-A Columbus this season.
Gose struck out 49 in 33 innings, hitting 100 mph on the radar gun and consistently throwing in the upper 90s. He walked 28 and was 6-1 with a 3.55 ERA in 28 games. Gose has pitched 13 scoreless innings, striking out 21 and walking six in his past 11 appearances.
This summer, Gose pitched four scoreless innings for the U.S Olympic team in Tokyo.
Gose hit .240 with 57 steals in the majors. In 2015, he stole 23 bases and hit 24 doubles for the Tigers while batting .254 in 140 games. He became a pitcher after failing to make Detroit’s opening day roster in 2017.
“You think about his journey, putting in the work over the last few years, he’s got to feel good about himself and what he’s done to get to this point,” Hale said.