Thames made manager Joe Girardi look good, stroking three hits off Brian Matusz -- including a run-scoring double in the sixth inning -- and working a walk in his fourth plate appearance.
"I know my job, and I'm ready to play when my name is in the lineup card," Thames said. "I've been working with [hitting coach Kevin Long] every day. I try to carry it over in the game."
Thames has made seven starts this season, all against left-handers. Sixteen of his 19 at-bats have been against southpaws, and he has 10 hits in his last 14 at-bats.
"He's played very well," Girardi said. "He's done everything we've asked him to do."
The lineup swap put Nick Johnson back on the bench after he'd gone 1-for-4 with a walk and a run scored on Thursday. Nick Swisher moved up to second in the lineup, and Thames batted sixth.
Thames had to sweat a little bit to make the team as a non-roster invitee this spring, pitted against Rule 5 selection Jamie Hoffmann, but that is beginning to seem like ancient history as he enjoys a hot start.
"It's great," he said. "I hit some balls in Spring Training, and they caught them. Everything evens out, I guess. I was just ready to get out of Spring Training, and when I found out that I made the ballclub, it took a little bit off of me. I was beating myself up, even though I worked hard in the offseason."