Yankees sign Marcus Thames


Update (3:44pm): Joel Sherman confirms that it is in fact a minor league deal, adding that Thames will make $900,000 if he makes the team. He pulled down $2.275M last season.

3:27pm: Via Jon Heyman, the Yankees have signed Marcus Thames to what I assume is a minor league deal. The soon to be 33-year-old has historically crushed lefties, though those splits weren’t as pronounced last year. With negative defensive value and zero baserunning prowess, anything Thames contributes will come from his ability to run into the occasional mistake pitch from the right side. He’s just some competition for Jamie Hoffmann in Spring Training.

Thames, of course, grew up in the Yanks’ system, and homered on the very first pitch he saw as a big leaguer, taking The Big Unit deep.

Categories : Asides


  1. What is this, 2003?

    (Not complaining. Just amused.)

  2. Hughesus Christo says:

    Peace, Jaime.

  3. Rose says:

    Not bad for depth. I’ll take it!

    Even though he was worth negative $400K last year according to Fangraphs.com

  4. Andy in Sunny Daytona says:


    No, let me fix that.

    Yay! I should never doubt Ca$hmoney Trilionaire.

  5. Carl says:

    Does this mean Hoffman is going back to the dodgers?

  6. A.D. says:

    Can’t really be mad at these moves

  7. W.W.J.M.D. says:

    I don’t like the signing,we could REALLY use a power bat for the bench. We already have enough OF and 1B.

    You’re killing me Cash, killing me softly.

  8. Chip says:

    Not only did he homer in his first at-bat but he homered on the first pitch….with his eyes closed

  9. pat says:

    I’d rather try and keep Hoffman around but, whatever.

  10. Rose says:

    Joel Sherman confirms that it is in fact a minor league deal, adding that Thames will make $900,000 if he makes the team.

    $900K is the new league minimum? Sheesh. If only I were lefty I could have had a niche in the system…

    • whozat says:

      …no, 900,000 is what they agreed to pay him should he make th bigs. If he doesn’t, he’ll make way, way less…probably something like what you or I would make for a year’s work ;-)

    • Drew says:

      I don’t think it’s the veteran’s minimum. I could be wrong.

      Though I read it as if he makes the 25 man, he’ll get that 900K.

    • A.D. says:

      The league min (i.e. what you have to pay someone you just called up) is ~410K this year

  11. Mac says:

    Can’t complain with this move.

  12. Bo says:

    It’s good that they need 3 guys to replace one in Damon. Why not just sign Damon and be done with it.

  13. Peter (O.G) says:

    a GREAT MOVE, imo.

    i know he has played bad defense of late. But thats something you can live with once a week or so(if that).

    a vetern power bat that mashes LHP. Something that makes sense with Gardner and Winn’s lack of production vs Lefties.

    also provides a short term power bat option if NJ were to go down.

    • ROBTEN says:

      I know Winn was historically bad last year vs. lefties, but let’s remember that for his career he’s:

      .280/.332/.426/.758 vs lefties

      and there is some evidence that he might be a good candidate for a Kevin Long reclamation project.

      But, I agree that the Thames deal is a high upside/low risk move.

      • JMK the Overshare’s Mystique and Aura says:

        I’d call it a low-to-moderate upside/low risk move for Thames. He basically either hits a HR or strikes out. 28 % career k-rate. Wow. That’s DeLeon territory.

  14. CountryClub says:

    Maybe because Damon’s two best offers (so far) came from the Yankees and he turned them both down.

  15. john doe says:

    Love the signing. Two years ago the man went on a home run spree that won me my fantasy league. If Granderson cannot hit lefties he plays Left and Winn center.

  16. john doe says:

    against lefties I should say

  17. JeffG says:

    I like it – we could use a pinch hitter who can take care of lefties.

    Cash is really bringing back the old gang huh?

  18. larryf says:

    At least it is now official that Cash reads RAB. Right after the Sheff post, he signs Thames…

  19. ADam says:

    Hoffman and Thames can fight it out for the 25th spot… Unless the yanks can strike a deal with the Dodgers to trade Hoffman back… Not sure if the Dodgers would do that, might as well wait to see if the yanks dump him then get him back for nothing…

    3 questions to look at for the end of Camp (If no significant Injuries)

    1. Hoffman or Thames for last outfield spot? (I like Hoffman)
    2. The Last LHRP.. Logan, or Ring, or DelaRosa? (Logan I guess)- all though this position probably changes 7 times throughout the year–
    3. The 5th Starter? (Joba all the way)

  20. Nick says:

    Great Power. Seemed like all he did was hit homeruns for Detroit.

  21. Not thrilled with the signing, would’ve preferred someone more well-rounded, but I can’t be mad. Unless Hoffmann is absolutely awful in ST, I doubt Thames makes the team.

  22. MikeD says:

    I hear there’s a guy named Damon out there on the market. We could probably plug him into left for a 100 games or so, and another 40 at DH. I’m not sure if he’s ever hit second, but if he has, he might form a good top-of-the-line up guy with Jeter. I hear he runs pretty well and also hits lefties. I guess the only question would be his make up. Would he like NY, would he fit in the club house. I’m guess he’s not expensive since he’s still sitting out there.

    Anybody know anything about him?

    • pete says:

      “he’s not expensive”


      right now, for the yankees, expensive = $1million+. Damon is the DEFINITION of expensive.

      • MikeD says:

        You know, if they would stop adding small pieces for $2 million here, and a million there, they might have found a way to fit him in the budget without too much of any expansion, since he’s options are few and his price seems to be decreasing. I guess we’ll find out when he finally does sign.

        I think Damon, Boras and the Yankees have all misplayed this one, and they’re all going to end up losing.

        • pete says:

          I think the yankees, who have essentially the same caliber offense as last year to complement a much improved defense and pitching staff will still win. So no. Damon lost. Boras lost. The yankees did not.

          • pete says:

            and they haven’t been adding “small pieces for $2 million here, a million there”. They added one piece for $2 million. They’ve added another who will only amount to $900,000 if he is good enough to warrant it. $2.9 < $5/$6/$7 million, which is what damon will probably get somewhere. If detroit signs damon to a minor league deal worth a potential $1 million, i'll be pissed. But that ain't gonna happen.

        • I think Damon, Boras and the Yankees have all misplayed this one, and they’re all going to end up losing.

          Damon needs the Yankees more than the Yankees need Damon.

          • pistol pete says:

            Agree they all misplayed this deal but after Melky was traded and Damon’s price dropped they should have signed him for say 1 yr 5m. Among all the nobodys they’ve signed (Winn, Thames, Mitre,Gaudin) they would have had enough $ for Damon. The others could have been replaced with anybody, Damon can’t. It got personal, Cashman got bullheaded and the Yankee fans will pay.

        • Pasqua says:

          They don’t want him!

    • Oh I see what you did there.

    • pete says:

      think of it this way:
      Scenario 1: You have $1 million. You want a car. You decide to go for a BMW 765. It’s big, comfortable, and generally a pretty awesome car, non-supercar division. Since you have $1 million, a $110,000 BMW 765 is not expensive.

      Scenario 2: You have $1 Million. You get a $500,000 Maybach for Luxury, and then get a $450,000 Ferrari for fun. But you still need a car to drive around. You want the BMW 765, but it is TOO EXPENSIVE NOW BECAUSE YOU BOUGHT THE OTHER CARS. So instead, you get a nice Toyota Avalon for about $40,000. You use the $10,000 you have left on to pay its insurance for the rest of your life. You made intelligent, responsible decisions with your money. Well done.

      The Yankees are currently in Scenario 2. They have a ton of money, but they’ve already spent almost all of it. Johnny Damon is NOT in the budget. Get over it.

    • Jack says:

      I’m guess he’s not expensive since he’s still sitting out there.

      That doesn’t make sense. The reason he’s still out there is because he’s expensive.

  23. [...] agent outfielder/designated hitter Marcus Thames. Thames, of course, was fantastic after signing a dirt cheap minor league deal with the Yankees last year, exceeding all expectations by hitting .288/.350/.491 (.365 wOBA) [...]

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