Jim Thome
Jim Thome
48-Year-Old DHDH
 Free Agent  
Free Agent
2018 Fantasy Outlook
There was no outlook written for Jim Thome in 2018. Check out the latest news below for more on his current fantasy value.
$Signed a one-year, $1.25-million deal with the Phillies in November 2011.
DHFree Agent  
July 2, 2013
Thome has not yet retired, but he has joined the White Sox's front office as an assistant to the general manager, Chuck Garfien of Comcast Sports Net reports.
ANALYSIS
The 42-year-old Thome attracted little interest from major-league teams after he hit eight home runs for the Phillies and Orioles in 2012. He may still attract some interest as a left-handed bat off the bench at some point this season, but at this point it looks like he has played his last game.
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Thome came off the bench for the Phillies and spent some time as the DH after a trade to the Orioles. The question now is whether Thome will retire or try to extend his career for another year. Thome's strikeout percentage increased to 32.8 percent, the highest of his career and he drove the ball into the ground with a 2.55 GB/FB ratio. He is 42 years old, but the Orioles appeared to be interested in bringing him back. Obviously, Thome is no longer the prolific power threat he once was and any team would be hard pressed to guarantee him consistent at-bats.
Thome showed there's still some gas left in the tank, hitting .256/.361/.479 with 15 homers in 93 games for the Twins and Indians. He likely turned down a chance at more playing time in a DH role by inking a deal with the Phillies. It should be noted that he did make a token appearance at third base in his time with the Indians which could qualify him there in some formats for the upcoming season, but most of his usage in Philadelphia will come as a pinch-hitter unless he shows signs of being capable of handling occasional duty at first base during spring training.
Thome entered last season appearing to be winding down his career in a pinch-hitting and reserve role with the Twins, but ended up becoming the primary DH and put up one of his best seasons on a per at-bat basis. Thome turned 40 last season, but showed little decline in his skill set as he still drew walks at an outstanding rate and had enormous power (including several of the longest home runs hit at Target Field). He is limited by his age in that he requires frequent rest for his oft-injured back, and the Twins didn't dare use him in the field. Even though he'll turn 41, he should be productive in a platoon role at DH this season again with Minnesota.
At 39, Thome isn't quite washed up, but he's certainly nearing the end of the line. Thome batted .249/.372/.493 with 23 homers in 345 at-bats for the White Sox, so he's not quite done, even if later in the season his time in Los Angeles was limited to a handful of pinch-hit appearances after he was traded. He signed with the Twins to become a pinch hitter and backup DH, but he could easily move into a platoon with Delmon Young (with Jason Kubel moving to RF). If he works his way regularly into the lineup, it wouldn't be a surprise to see another 25-30 homers, but with a low batting average.
There has to be someone out there who won their league because Jim Thome stole his first base since 2002. Even with that bonus, it was an off year, as he was missing 15 singles and a handful of walks. This is the decline phase, and while Thome will still be productive, be aware that he's a better bet to hit .220 than .280.
Thome missed 24 games with back and rib injuries but still managed 35 homers and 96 RBI. Healthy for the most part in the second half, Thome responded with a .273 average and 21 homers after the All-Star break. His balky back is going to need constant attention but the White Sox have one of the better medical staffs around. He continues to mash righties and his home park certainly helps him out and he'll return as the team's primary DH again this year.
The move to designated hitter was supposed to keep Thome healthy. He suffered through hamstring, groin, wrist and quad injuries throughout last season, missing 20 days total. When he was healthy, he was a monster, hitting 42 home runs, driving in and scoring over 100 runs for the eighth time in his career and landing in the All-Star game for the fifth time. He has two seasons left on his contract and, if he can fight off the little injuries, should maintain his high rate of return.
Thome came to the end of his Phillies career a lot sooner than people anticipated. His chronically sore back gave him problems early, and when he returned he didn't seem to have his timing or bat speed back. No matter - his season ended at the end of June with a sore elbow, which he had surgery on in August. He'll now DH for the White Sox, which could reduce his injury risk and return him to his 40-home run form.
The big first baseman had another very good year for the Phillies, further justifying their big investment in him. Thome tied for fifth in the NL in HR, for 12th in RBI and ranked eighth in walks. He hit 15 of his homers in June and bagged the Player of the Month award. Thome's numbers against lefthanders (.239) are a cause for concern and he didn't thrive (.243) in Citizens Bank Park. Thome was slowed in September by a bruised chest he sustained in a collision, but that isn't a concern for 2005.
Thome finished fourth in the National League MVP balloting in 2003 and led the National League in homers with 47 homers, one shy of the franchise record. Thome did see his batting average, OBP and slugging percentage drop, so there's some concern about a decline. We'll see how the new ballpark plays for Thome - it's supposed to favor left-handed power hitters.
The Phillies spent lavishly in the off-season and Thome was their biggest purchase. He's averaged 46 homers and 116 RBI the last three seasons. He had some back problems last season, but was able to play through the pain. Thome will bat cleanup and should see plenty of RBI opportunities with Bobby Abreu hitting third and Jimmy Rollins leading off. More importantly, Pat Burrell hitting fifth will offer ample protection for Thome.
More Fantasy News
DHFree Agent  
May 1, 2013
Thome has been working out in Arizona and still hopes to play this season, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.
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DHFree Agent  
February 25, 2013
The Twins had discussions with Thome about a month ago about a contract, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.
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DHFree Agent  
February 3, 2013
It's a "possibility" that Thome could be pursued by the Indians, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports.
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DHFree Agent  
December 2, 2012
Thome has not been contacted by the Orioles during the offseason, according to MASN Sports.
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DHFree Agent  
October 29, 2012
Thome filed for free agency Monday, MASN Sports reports.
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