Friday, July 01, 2005
Simply put, Thome's struggles are the reason why the Phillies are struggling. When Thome was signed in the 2002-2003 off-season he was expected to be the main cog in the Phillies attack, the big bat in the middle of the order. He was in 2003 and 2004, hitting 40+ home runs each year and being the leader they sought. Right now Thome's .358 slugging percentage is about two hundred points off his career average. He's actually running about sixty points behind the team average: not good when he's hitting fourth or fifth in the lineup.
The Phillies have a lot of money invested in Thome, but the fact of the matter is that they've got a shot at making a run for the playoffs and leaving Thome's struggles impact the team's success is no good. Drop him in the lineup, or sit him in favor of Ryan Howard and use Howard's play as trade-bait (since the Phillies seem more interested in trading him than developing him). Right now the Phillies have to get Thome out of the way.
I'll be gone for a few days: check back on Tuesday.
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