According to Kelsie Smith of the St. Paul Pioneer Press, the Twins have inked Jim Thome to a one-year contract. LaVelle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune is reporting that the deal is worth $1.5 million with another $700,000 available through performance-based incentives.
Thome, who turns 40 near the end of the 2010 season, hit .249/.366/.481 with 23 home runs and 77 RBI last year in 362 at-bats between the White Sox and Dodgers. He will struggle to find playing time in Minnesota but he brings a significant amount of pop to a Twins bench that lacked just that last season. CTB’s own Aaron Gleeman broke down the big man’s potential value in a post last week.
If manager Ron Gardenhire really wants to get creative this year, he can slide usual designated hitter Jason Kubel out to left field and use Thome as the DH against some right-handed pitchers. Delmon Young would then be benched. Whatever the scenario, there’s no doubting that the Twins just got a little bit better, and for a relatively low cost.