According to the Philadelphia Phillies twitter feed, “
#Phillies acquire Minor League RHP Kyle Simon and C Gabriel Lino for 1B Jim Thome”. Obviously, especially when looking at 2012, the impact of this trade lies solely with Thome.
The Orioles needed some extra pop in the middle of their order, especially against right-handed pitching. While the team has hit home runs, they rank 19th in the league with 223 runs against RHP and 26th with a ,235 average against RHP. Thome should help dramatically in that regard.
This season Thome is hitting .262 in 42 AB against RHP. To give an idea of his potential, however, in 2010 Thome hit .302 with 19 HR in 189 AB against RHP. While he’s now 41-years old and probably not capable of that type of productiob, he has proven that he can still swing the bat and will be a welcome addition to the Baltimore roster.
It was obvious that Nick Johnson, who recently was put on the DL, was not the answer. Mark Reynolds, who also has power, DH’ed today but after going 0-2 is now hitting .210 on the season. In other words, the trade clearly fills a need.
Thome is not going to be an everyday player and only holds value in AL-only and the deepest of formats. In weeks when the Orioles have an abundance of RHP on the schedule, he will be a viable option. However, playing in the AL East (Jon Lester, CC Sabathia, David Price, etc.), there are going to be plenty of weeks where he should be on your bench. If you are going to pick him up you just need to be cognizant of that. There is power potential, but he’s not the type of player to set him and forget him.