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Jim Thome is looking for work

Feb 22, 2013, 1:48 PM EDT

Jim Thome Getty Getty Images

We haven’t heard much about Jim Thome since the Indians stopped pursuing him a few weeks ago, but Ken Rosenthal of talked to the future Hall of Famer and has an update.

Basically he’d like to play this season but doesn’t have any interested teams right now, so the 42-year-old is heading to Arizona to work out and be prepared.

“My plan is to kind of stay in shape and see what happens,” Thome told Rosenthal. “If a team calls for me, mentally, I want to know I’m ready to go.”

Because he’s strictly a designated hitter and has often needed regular days off to avoid injuries Thome’s market has been limited for several years–at least compared to his production–and now that he’s shown signs of slowing down as a hitter last season the market may have totally dried up.

Which is a shame, because Thome is still an above-average hitter with power and patience, and is universally regarded as a helluva nice guy too. If he wants to play a 23nd season I’d love to see him land a part-time gig, but it’s not looking likely.

  1. Kevin Gillman - Feb 22, 2013 at 1:52 PM

    He had his chance with the Indians this offseason. Now they don’t need him at all, so he missed out. Who else can use him right now?

    • Cris E - Feb 22, 2013 at 4:58 PM

      Ron Gardenhire was talking earlier this week about how he wanted a better bench this year, one with some thump. Thome was popular as heck in MN back in 2010-11 and he probably would be again.

      But here’s the thing: even in 2011 his bat was slowing down. A good high fastball could beat him often as not, and things are getting worse each year. The power is sagging, the walks are falling as the strikeouts mount, and he’s not a solid bet to crush for you. There are other, better veteran pinch hitters that currently don’t have jobs, so in 2013 most teams would probably offer a coaching or broadcast gig before a playing position. Great guy, huge career, but the milestones are in the books and it’s looking like closing time.

      • Kevin Gillman - Feb 22, 2013 at 5:20 PM

        While I agree Cris, his speed is much slower, but he went through a spurt in the middle of the season, before he was hurt and playing on most days, he didn’t look like much had changed. I was at the Indians game where Jim was playing for the Orioles, and he was a Triple shy of a cycle, and I was thinking he was going to get it…LOL I just always thought Jim would decide when his days were done, and not baseball.

    • raysfan1 - Feb 22, 2013 at 8:01 PM

      The Rays.

      • Kevin Gillman - Feb 22, 2013 at 8:24 PM

        It’s always a possibility, but right now they have Luke Scott, unless he gets hurt.

      • raysfan1 - Feb 22, 2013 at 10:18 PM

        True…or if Loney gets hurt…but none of the three are very useful against lefties, and that’s what they really need right now.

  2. historiophiliac - Feb 22, 2013 at 1:57 PM


  3. samsonleague - Feb 22, 2013 at 2:21 PM

    Softball teams everywhere are wondering what Thome’s phone number is…

    • jwbiii - Feb 22, 2013 at 6:14 PM

      Odd that you should mention that. Thome’s father was an outstanding softball player. They know where to find him.

  4. 2077james - Feb 22, 2013 at 2:50 PM

    We’ll miss out on watching a decent dude like Thome play whilst watching a douche like Melky Cabrera. Sometimes life ain’t fair.

  5. Jason Lukehart - Feb 22, 2013 at 3:37 PM

    I would bet that at some point during the season, an injury somewhere will open up a spot for Thome’s bat. I sure hope so anyway…

    • Rockie D. Bull - Feb 22, 2013 at 5:11 PM

      Hopefully the Rays will take a look at Thome when “Luke the Puke” gets injured again. If Maddening Joe would give Thome all the chances Carlos Pena had last year, maybe he could show that he still has some gas left in the tank.

  6. Francisco (FC) - Feb 22, 2013 at 4:22 PM

    Jim Thome is looking for work

    Well, I do need a good gardener.

    (I kid JT, hope you find a team soon)

  7. tuberippin - Feb 22, 2013 at 10:06 PM

    One more year! One more year!

  8. Cereal - Feb 23, 2013 at 8:12 AM

    Love ya’ Jimmy but you are so done. Anyone who watched the Phils or O’s last year knows that

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