And then, just when you step away from your computer for a few hours because you have a life or maybe there was power outage or something, and Ruben Amaro pulls the trigger on the first round of offseason Phillies dealings.
Ruben Amaro, looking to add some youth to the aging Phillies core, signed 41-year-old Jim Thome for $1.25 million over one year. Of course, Ruben’s using trackable thinking here. I’m sure the image of his wildly paid first baseman writhing on the ground in pain had Ruben at least stroking his chin.
“Hmmm,” he thought. “I’m not sure Ryan would be able to play first base while rolling around on the ground in constant pain.”
That’s because he’s trained to think like that by the best. So a big bat in Thome–already cherished by the fanbase for being the swell guy none of us can manage to be–playing at first makes a lot of sense.
Why, just ask the year 2007. That’s the last time Thome picked up a glove and trotted out to a position in the field without somebody going “…the hell are you doing, Jim?”
Some baseball players, or people for that matter, get worse at something when they don’t do it for awhile. But clearly, Ruben is aware of Jim’s imperviousness to time itself, otherwise he wouldn’t have signed the aging, albeit wonderful, veteran, to play in the field a lot.
Of course, the move does reunite Jim with Charlie Manuel, who appears to be the source of his powers. When those two get together, whoa boy, watch out. They will make you feel absolutely silly. Of course, Manuel is only responsible for Jim’s offensive prowess. So as long as he hits a home run during every at bat, including spring training, and any time he swings at a ball this winter, he will pay for himself.