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  1. #241
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Schofield, WI
    Posts
    1,523
    Thames is a fine player, probably slightly above average all things considered. Him and Aguilar have combined for 40 homers and 90 RBIs this season already. That production works for me and I don't want to see Braun moved next year. I like Braun in left next year and agree you don't just hand the position over. I actually think Broxton would be a good 4th OF, but if someone offers a sixth or seventh inning reliever I take that offer. We got him for basically nothing trading Rogers and you can turn it into a 7th inning guy would be awesome as middle relief is a need.

    As for the eye test for me it's a bit different. It wasn't oh man Thames is hitting .150 and then watch his ABs. It was the opposite. "He never seems to come through with guys on." Am I wrong here, go and look and then I started watching his ABs. So you'd think it would improve, but he rarely hits the ball hard with guys on which contributes to his horrendous average. Broxton too. Tries to do too much every time guys are on. When he's going like he is now, not overswinging, going to right-center he would be fine, but he only does that for a week out of every 6.

    Thames I think can improve and like you say it's his first year back in the states. For his deal he's doing more than what he's paid. But just in a hat, if there is an upgrade possibility go for it, I just don't think at 5 million you are going to find a guy hitting 30-plus HRs. So, I don't strongly dislike him but he's an odd player. Where do you hit him? I think that's part of why some are thinking of trading him. I like the Thames/Aguilar platoon with Braun in left next year. If Thames can improve and make more contact and take better at-bats in RISP spots...no qualms.

  2. #242
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    8,036
    Thames hard hit rate is 30% with RISP, so I'd hardly say that's rarely. Comparatively, Neil walker, who's hitting over .400 with RISP has a hard hit rate of 35% with RISP. Walker obvisously hits it hard more often, but only 5% of the time. That's not enough to account for the .250 pt difference in batting average. The huge gap in BABIP probably has something to do with it.

    My point is that I think Thames will improve with RISP just due to luck and regression to his mean. His spray chart is similar with RISP as it is normally. He hits a few more grounders with RISP than he normally does. And there's a little bit of a dip in his hard hit rate. His strikeout and walk rates remain similar, so it's not like he's chasing more pitches or trying to hit more balls out (his pull numbers should increase if that was the case). I think his numbers are more likely to increase in those situations.

    And where do you hit him? He can leadoff if villar isn't performing and bat 2 if he isn't. Getting on base is a wildly important thing to do in front of your best hitters. So why wouldn't you want a guy with a .360 obp to be in front of Braun, Shaw and Santana. Heck, and even get him on in front of walker and pina. Who hits at the top of the order should almost entirely be predicated on who gets on base. Thames does exactly that.

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