Eric Thames (37), who is considered one of the best foreign hitters in the KBO league, will eventually take off his uniform.
Thames said in a phone call with Star News on the 6th (Korean time), “I think it’s time now. I decided to retire. I felt that it was not easy to seize opportunities to play as I got older.”
Born in California, USA, Thames entered the professional league after being selected by the Toronto team in the 7th round (219 overall) of the 2008 Major League Baseball Draft. And he was a promising prospect enough to debut in the big leagues in May 2011, just three years later.
However, he has not been able to establish himself as a clear starter in the major leagues. In 2012, the following year, he was traded to Seattle and his position narrowed further. In the end, Thames, who played in 181 games in two years in the major leagues and recorded a batting average of 0.250, 21 homers and 62 RBIs, stayed in the minor leagues throughout 2013 and turned his attention to the Korean stage by signing with NC after the season.
His search for a new breakthrough was right. Thames, who played in the KBO League for three years from 2014, posted outstanding results with a career batting average of 0.349, 124 home runs and 382 RBIs. The combined OPS of on-base percentage and slugging percentage recorded a whopping 1.173, and won the regular season MVP in 2015.
Thames, who played a big role on the Korean stage, successfully returned to the major leagues by signing a three-year, $16 million (approximately 22.512 billion won) contract with Milwaukee in 2017. He went through Washington in 2020 and signed with Yomiuri in 2021 and also advanced to the Japanese league. However, in the first 메이저사이트business trip of the season, he suffered an Achilles tendon rupture injury while defending and was out for the season.
After returning to the United States and completing surgery and rehabilitation, he competed to return to the big leagues in spring camp after signing a minor league contract with Oakland last year. However, in the end, he did not make it to the roster for the opening game of the major leagues, and after being released from Triple A in May, he has been invincible and has not been able to find a new team. His career major league performance was a batting average of 0.241 (451 hits in 1868 at-bats), 96 home runs, 235 RBIs, and an OPS of 0.792 in 605 appearances over six seasons.
When asked about future plans, Thames added, “I’ll take a break for a while and think about it,” adding, “I won’t rule out returning to the field as a coach.”