Jim Thome hit 612 homers and 1,699 RBI in his 22-year career.
Jim Thome confirmed why he was a first baseman and designated hitter for the majority of his major-league career when he threw out the ceremonial first pitch for the Triple-A Charlotte Knights on Friday.
Thome played for six teams, was a five-time All Star, collected 2,328 hits and hit 612 home runs during his illustrious 22-year career, but there’s a reason he didn’t pitch.
The 43-year-old just missed the outside corner — by a few feet — as he airmailed his first pitch on Opening Day for the Chicago White Sox’s Triple-A affiliate.
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Check out Thome’s poor toss in the video below:
Drafted in the 13th round of the 1989 draft by Cleveland, Thome played a majority of his career with the Indians, 1991 to ’02 plus a short 22-game stint in 2011. He is Cleveland’s all-time leader in homers (337) and walks (1,008), and is second in RBI (937).
He also played for the Philadelphia Phillies from 2003-’05 and for 30 games in 2012; was with the Chicago White Sox from 2006-’09 before a late-season trade to the Los Angeles Dodgers; was with the Minnesota Twins in 2010 and most of 2011; and concluded his career with the Baltimore Orioles for 28 games.
Thome ranks seventh on MLB’s all-time homer list and is also seventh in base-on-balls (1,747). Plus (before the 2014 season started), he is 24th in RBI (1,699), 24th in slugging percentage (.554), 37th in total bases (4,667) and 50th in runs (1,583).