MLB: Under-The-Radar Pickups

MLB: Under-The-Radar Pickups

Clete Thomas, OF, Twins

Placed on waivers by the Tigers last week and claimed by Minnesota on Saturday, the lefty-swinging outfielder found himself starting in right field for the depth-challenged Twins Sunday. Originally drafted by the Twins, Thomas instead chose to attend Auburn University. Following a successful career with the SEC's Tigers, Detroit's Tigers drafted him in 2005 and he moved quickly up to the big club in 2008. He was caught up in an outfield logjam that included similar rank-and-file talents like Andy Dirks, Matt Joyce and Casper Wells, none of whom were able to establish themselves as integral parts of Jim Leyland's lineup. Now Thomas has been freed from a fifth season spent with the Toledo Mudhens, and despite modest stats in the International League (.252/.336./.409), he brings a bit of fantasy value to the Twins as an outfielder with pop (he homered in his second at-bat in his Target Field debut) and some speed (he swiped 20 bases in 23 attempts last season. With Ben Revere sent to the minors, Thomas will see a majority of the right field at-bats for Ron Gardenhire, making him worth a pickup for those AL-only teams in need of an outfielder.

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