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A's agree to terms with DH Frank Thomas
04/24/2008 12:18 PM ET
OAKLAND -- The Oakland A's today agreed to terms with free agent designated hitter Frank Thomas. To clear a spot for Thomas on the roster, the A's placed outfielder Travis Buck on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 19 with shin splints. To clear a spot for Thomas on the 40-man roster, the A's transferred Eric Chavez to the 60-day DL.

Thomas was in the second year of a two-year contract with the Toronto Blue Jays and was batting .167 with three home runs, 11 RBI and 11 walks in 16 games when he was released by the Blue Jays on April 20. He batted .277 with 26 home runs and 95 RBI in 155 games for Toronto last year after spending the 2006 season with Oakland. The 39-year old Thomas hit .270 with 39 home runs and 114 RBI during his first stint with the A's and received the 2006 Players Choice Award for American League Comeback Player of the Year.

Thomas spent the first 16 seasons of his career with the Chicago White Sox and was a five-time All-Star. He also won back-to-back AL Most Valuable Players Awards in 1993 and 1994 and led the AL in batting in 1997 when he hit .347. Now in his 19th season, Thomas has a .302 career batting average with 516 home runs and 1685 RBI in 2267 games. With 1639 walks and 1474 runs scored, he is one of just four players in Major League history with at least a .300 career average, 500 home runs, 1500 RBI, 1000 runs and 1500 walks. He joins Hall of Famers Ted Williams, Babe Ruth and Mel Ott in that elite group. Thomas ranks ninth on Major League Baseball's all-time walks list, is 18th in home runs, 20th in on-base percentage (.420), 22nd in RBI and slugging (.559) and 24th in extra base hits (1016). His 264 career home runs as a designated hitter are a Major League record.

Buck was batting .154 with no home runs and six RBI in 15 games for the A's this year. He has missed the last four games with shin splints. This is his third career stint on the disabled list as he had two stays on the DL last year with a sprained right thumb and a strained left hamstring.

Chavez has not played this year as he continues to rehab from off-season back surgery. He had three surgeries over a 10-week span during the off-season as he had surgery to repair a torn labrum on his right shoulder on September 5, microdiscectomy surgery on his back on October 9 and a left shoulder debridement on November 16. Chavez is eligible to be reinstated from the DL on May 27.

The A's have now used the disabled list seven times this year and currently have six players on the DL. Last year, the A's used the DL an Oakland record tying 22 times.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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