Slugging first baseman and outfielder Eric Thames, who rejuvenated his major league career with three monster seasons in South Korea, is poised to return to Asia after agreeing to terms with the Yomiuri Giants, the Central League club announced Wednesday.
The 34-year-old will arrive in Japan with 96 career home runs — 75 after he joined the Milwaukee Brewers in 2017 after hitting 124 home runs for the Korea Baseball Organization’s NC Dinos from 2014 to 2016.
The left-handed hitter’s contract is reportedly worth $1.2 million.
Thames delivered a .359 on-base percentage with 31 home runs in 138 games in his first season for the Brewers and only an injury-hit 2018 season marred his time in Milwaukee. Thames played 41 games for the Washington Nationals this past season, hitting three home runs in 123 at-bats.
The Giants, who have won the last two CL pennants, are also looking into acquiring veteran major league first baseman Justin Smoak, a source with knowledge of the matter said.
The 34-year-old switch-hitter hit 38 home runs for the Toronto Blue Jays in 2017, and has hit 196 in his big league career. He played in 36 games last season for the Brewers and San Francisco Giants.
In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.