South Korean professional team NC Dinos announced Thursday that they had signed former Phillie Aaron Altherr.
Altherr, 28, was drafted by the Phillies in the 9th round of the 2009 Amateur Draft. He made his major league debut with the club in 2014. He spent parts of five seasons with the team, but was never able to stay healthy and consistent for a sustained period of time.
In 2017, Altherr had by far his best season as a Phillie. In 107 games, he hit .270/.340/.516, and appeared to be a promising corner outfielder for the team coming out of their rebuild. However, he regressed in 2018 and his struggles in 2019 led the team to designate him for assignment.
Altherr spent the rest of 2019 bouncing throughout the league, making major league appearances for both the San Francisco Giants and New York Mets. His .564 OPS across the last two seasons is reason enough to believe that he may not be given another chance in the majors anytime soon, and he has decided to take his career to Korea.
Free agent first baseman Eric Thames played with the NC Dinos for three seasons after struggling early in the majors. This helped revitalize Thames’ career, as he has spent the last three seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers. It is likely that Altherr is trying to follow this blueprint, using a stop with the NC Dinos as an eventual stepping stone back into the majors.
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