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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

2017 FANTASY BASEBALL ISSUES: WHAT TO DO WITH ERIC THAMES

What to do with Eric Thames?  What the hell does that mean?  Is he not the guy who is the sudden star of the 2017 fantasy baseball season who went five straight games (and 6 in that span overall) and went into Wednesday's games with a scorching .426 average?  Who went all Babe Ruth in Korea for three years where he also picked up a bunch of stolen bases?  Yes that Eric Thames.  Now before you leave and never come back, hear me out.  Let me just say one name for you:  Chris Shelton.  Yes the same Chris Shelton from Detroit Tigers "lore" who had an April power-hitting binge out of nowhere a few years ago in much the same way that we are seeing out of Thames.  Shelton was the guy everyone just had to have that April and the traded proposals were inundating their owners' inboxes.  Then May arrived and just like that the legend of Chris Shelton was on its way to becoming one of the biggest fluke performances in fantasy baseball history.  Just like that Shelton couldn't hit anything and pretty soon he was out of the game of baseball forever.  So why invoke Shelton here when Eric Thames has more of a track record with his Korean performance?  Allow me to explain.

The other day someone send me a message on Twitter saying he got offered Edwin Encarnacion straight up for Thames.  Another one said he was offered Carlos Correa straight up.  Yet another was offered Manny Machado.  These three actually asked me what to do and I waited all of two seconds to say accept all three offers.  In fact it was utterly ludicrous that these Thames owners were offered these first round and top tier hitters for a guy with two outstanding weeks in the majors.  In fact all Thames owners everyone NEED to shoot for the moon in trying to sell high here as his value will NEVER be higher.  Pretty soon Thames will cool off and his past as a high-K guy will start to show up again.  Right now Thames' BABIP is at .448 which is stupid lucky and again he was a big strikeout guy in the past who could easily slide back into that mode again.  Remember that opposing pitchers have literally zero film on Thames and so there is no current book on the holes in his swing.  Once that is discovered like with Shelton, these pitchers will go to town on Thames there and the average will sink and the homers won't be as frequent.  If you can wrest a proven and top tier talent prior to that, by all means do it.

Now I will say that Thames' power is legit and he will continue to be a big help there.  He has the natural pop to hit 40 home runs but so does Chris Carter and no one wants to own him.  Thames is not as horrid an overall hitter as Carter and has some speed that could supply steals eventually.  However the price will never be higher then it is now and all Thames owners need to see what they can procure.


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