Thames has been working out in his garage and hitting off a tee to stay in shape, Byron Kerr of MASN Sports reports. "The trainers have definitely been reaching out to make sure no one is showing any symptoms and then the strength coach has been reaching out to make sure you get your sprints in, your program, your stretching, do this and that. Just making sure guys don't show up overweight or out of shape. You don't want to get hurt," Thames said earlier this week. The veteran slugger also said he was making sure he didn't hit the weights too much out of sheer boredom. "Not trying to do too much because I do get really big. So this last month, my programming is all stretching and just getting my shoulders ready, my hips and all that fun stuff."
Thames (calf) felt good after going 2-for-3 in his return to the lineup Saturday against Miami, Jesse Dougherty of The Washington Post reports. Thames felt good enough after losing a few days to calf tightness that he attempted to stretch a single into a double in the first inning. He didn't play in the field Saturday but should be able to do so soon.
Thames (calf) is expected to serve as a designated hitter in one of Saturday's split-squad games, Mark Zuckerman of MASNSports.com reports. Thames has been limited by left calf tightness early on in spring training, but he's been fielding grounders and taking batting practice this week. Assuming Thames is able to bat as expected Saturday, game action at first base figures to follow shortly thereafter.
Thames has been dealing with a tight left calf and is expected return to game action this weekend, Sam Fortier of The Washington Post reports. The 33-year-old has been fielding grounders and taking batting practice at the team facility as of late, but manager Davey Martinez doesn't want to push the veteran too hard this early in camp. Thames finished his 2019 campaign in Milwaukee hitting .247/.346/.505 with 25 home runs, 67 runs scored and 61 RBI across 459 plate appearances. The left-handed power hitter is expected to enter Opening Day in a platoon role with Ryan Zimmerman at first base. Thames has hit a total of 63 home runs against righties over the past three seasons, compared to just nine versus southpaws.
Thames signed a one-year, $4 million deal with the Nationals on Monday, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports. The deal also includes a mutual option for a second season. The 33-year-old hasn't been able to keep up the incredible numbers he posted in his first month back in major-league baseball in 2017, but his .247/.346/.505 slash line with 25 homers for the Brewers last season was certainly respectable. His arrival in Washington complicates the team's infield picture. Howie Kendrick had appeared to be the primary option at first base but will likely now also take playing time from Starlin Castro and Asdrubal Cabrera at second and third. Thames can also play the outfield corners.