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Jim Thome signs with Phillies

Posted on: November 4, 2011 7:03 pm
Edited on: November 5, 2011 4:33 pm
By Matt Snyder

Jim Thome spent three seasons in Philadelphia and now he's headed back for one more. He has agreed to a one-year contract with the Phillies, the team announced Saturday. The contract is worth $1.25 million.

One would expect Thome's role to simply be a left-handed power bat off the bench, as he hasn't played more than a three games in the field in a season since 2005. General manager Ruben Amaro said as much after the signing:

“We’re very happy to be able to bring Jim back to Philadelphia at this point in his career,” said Amaro in a statement.  “He will be an option for Charlie to use off the bench each night and brings a great attitude to the ballpark every day.”

Other than a symbolic appearance at third base to end the 2011 season, he's been either a designated hitter or pinch hitter since 2007.

The interesting thing here is that Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard is recovering from surgery that repaired his torn Achilles tendon shortly after the Phillies lost to the Cardinals in Game 5 of the NLDS (Howard suffered the injury on the final out). Reports have indicated Howard could make it back by opening day but he's going to have to avoid any setbacks and that the timetable still seems pretty aggressive. So perhaps the Phillies try to use Thome at first in the early weeks of the season? It all depends on how much they want his bat in the lineup in comparison with how much defense they're willing to sacrifice. Thome has said that he's going to come prepared to play defense when he reports to camp this spring.

Thome, 41, became just the eighth man in baseball history to slug at least 600 career home runs when he hit No. 600 this past season as a member of the Twins. He was then traded to the Indians -- where he began his career -- in late August. Thome was with the Phillies from 2003-05, but he was only the full-time starter for the first two years. By the third year, Howard had taken over as the starter at first base as Thome battled injuries -- clearing the way for the Phillies to trade Thome to the White Sox after the season. Still, Thome definitely likes the organization.

"Every player sees the way the Phillies have done things," Thome said. "They've set the bar very, very high."

And his relationship with Phillies manager Charlie Manuel is really solid.

"Everyone knows my relationship with Jimmy," Manuel said. "But he's not here because of that. He's here to contribute to our team in a positive way, both on and off the field."

The 2012 season will be the 22nd of Thome's illustrious career. He played in the World Series in 1995 and 1997, but still doesn't have a ring. Winning the World Series would seem to fill the only void left in Thome's career.

RELATED: Phillies reportedly "in serious pursuit" of Cuddyer

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Since: Jan 3, 2008
Posted on: November 6, 2011 5:23 pm

Jim Thome signs with Phillies

What is the head scratcher? He is replacing Ross Gload. I would rather see Thome pich hit in the playoffs than Gload and day.

Also at 1.25 mil that is a no brainer.


Since: May 12, 2008
Posted on: November 6, 2011 10:31 am

Jim Thome signs with Phillies

This is a head scratcher.  I actually thought Thome was going to sign for a day and then maybe retire a Phil.  Do the Phils really put him on the field to play 1b?!  He is class and has been a consumate pro.  He has hit many HR's and made many fans along the way.  But really?!  Phils have printed WS tickets for two years straight now only to have them serve as book marks and liners for bird cages.  THIS is not the move that will get them to the WS. 
NOW, Cuddyer....  THAT would be the move to note.  As a Giants fan, I hope that they are targeting him.  He is quality and will be an everyday player....something Thome cannot be.  As bad as Howard's fielding is, Thomse will be a step down.  Head scratcher indeed.

Since: Jul 27, 2011
Posted on: November 6, 2011 7:39 am

Jim Thome signs with Phillies

At this price, Thome makes sense to pretty much any team.

He brings experience and a decent attitude which are almost worth the salary even if he never makes an at bat. And of course he will make at bats, and drive in some runs. As utility players go, a great deal.

Whether or not he wins a WS is another matter, but Philly will be in the mix no doubt so he has a chance.

I am not a keen reader of rumour so I do not feel qualified to comment on any element of "tainted". Plenty of others have been found out, and I am tempted to believe that if a guy can rack up 600+ HR without evidence surfacing, then he is probably clean.

If it turns out I am kidding myself, then so be it.

Since: Mar 30, 2008
Posted on: November 5, 2011 8:24 pm

Jim Thome signs with Phillies

Now the Phillies are a WS LOCK for 2012!

Since: Aug 3, 2011
Posted on: November 5, 2011 6:08 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Feb 3, 2007
Posted on: November 5, 2011 1:45 pm

Report: Jim Thome signs with Phillies

I am actually ok with the signing.  Howard will be out for at least 3 months.  Thome will play first base against right handed pitching.  He will sit when facing lefties.  When Howard comes back, Thome will come off the bench as a pinch hitter. Thome will probably butcher some balls at first base, but last I heard, Howard is not exactly a gold glove 1b...

Since: Jan 7, 2008
Posted on: November 5, 2011 1:01 pm

Report: Jim Thome signs with Phillies

Just another big fat dumb billy bob who is insearch of a tainted ring he dosen't deserve.  A world series ring does not make a career, its how you play tne game day in and day out. There are alot of players in the hall of fame who don't have a ring. Too much is made about this. Thome will never make it through the season without being hurt.  He is 41 yrs. old.

Since: Mar 22, 2007
Posted on: November 5, 2011 12:41 pm

Report: Jim Thome signs with Phillies

Did the NL add the DH?

Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: November 5, 2011 12:32 pm

Report: Jim Thome signs with Phillies

This may be Thome's last season. He'd like a chance to win a ring, and the Phillies are probably the team with the best chance, that are interested in Thome. Who knows what Ryan Howard's physical condition will be, or how long it will keep him sidelined, and Thome can play 1b as well as stone-handed Howard anyway. Thome is still a middle of the order hitter.

It's a good move that makes sense for Thome and the Phillies.  

Since: Aug 17, 2007
Posted on: November 5, 2011 12:12 pm

Report: Jim Thome signs with Phillies

I'm really not sure about this signing? Why would he want to sign with the Phillies to sit on their bench? Yes he could be a left handed power bat off the bench but he can't be a everyday starter at first base for them while they wait for Ryan Howard to heal!

I'm really suprised by this, I would of thought that he would of signed with an American League team!  

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