62 Facts About Jim Thome


James Howard Thome is an American former professional baseball corner infielder and designated hitter, who played in Major League Baseball for 22 seasons.

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Jim Thome played for six different teams during the 1990s and early 2000s.

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Jim Thome was a member of five All-Star teams and won a Silver Slugger Award in 1996.

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Jim Thome grew up in Peoria, Illinois, as part of a large blue-collar family of athletes, who predominantly played baseball and basketball.

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Early in his career, Jim Thome played third base, before eventually becoming a first baseman.

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Jim Thome spent over a decade with the Tribe, before leaving via free agency after the 2002 season, to join the Philadelphia Phillies, with whom he spent the following three seasons.

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Jim Thome hit a career-high 52 homers in 2002, and in 2003 he led the National League in home runs with 47.

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Jim Thome was known for his consistently positive attitude and "gregarious" personality.

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In 2018, Jim Thome was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility.

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Jim Thome was born in Peoria, Illinois, on August 27,1970, and is the youngest of five children.

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Many of the Thome family played sports: Jim's grandmother was hired at a local Caterpillar plant solely to play for the company's softball team; his father built bulldozers for Caterpillar and played slow-pitch softball; his aunt Caroline Thome Hart is in the Women's Softball Hall of Fame; and his two older brothers, Chuck III and Randy, played baseball at Limestone High School.

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Jim Thome learned to play baseball from his father on a tennis court, and played basketball in what he described as the "ghetto" of Peoria, noting that he was the only white kid there but that he earned the respect of his fellow players.

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One day during his youth, Jim Thome sneaked into the Cubs' clubhouse at Wrigley Field in an unsuccessful attempt to obtain an autograph from his favorite player, Dave Kingman.

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Jim Thome played American Legion Baseball for Bartonville Limestone Post 979 in his hometown, as well.

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Jim Thome graduated in 1988 and, after not being drafted, enrolled at Illinois Central College where he continued his baseball and basketball careers.

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Unlike most Indians staff, Manuel saw potential in Jim Thome and worked hard with him, particularly on his hip motion while swinging the bat.

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Jim Thome spent most of the 1991 season splitting time between Double-A and Triple-A where, in combination, he hit.

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Jim Thome made his MLB debut on September 4,1991, as a third baseman against the Minnesota Twins.

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That year, Jim Thome helped the Indians set a new franchise single-season record for home runs, contributing 40 of them.

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Jim Thome totaled an AL-high 120 walks to go along with 102 RBIs.

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In July 1998, Jim Thome hit his 24th home run of that season while helping the Indians end the Yankees' 10-game winning streak.

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Jim Thome hit a career-high 52 home runs and collected 118 RBI.

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Jim Thome hit a franchise record 334 home runs in his first stint with the Indians.

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Jim Thome hit 47 home runs in his first season with the Phillies, finishing one behind Mike Schmidt's single-season team record of 48 in 1980, and tied with Alex Rodriguez for the MLB lead in 2003.

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On June 14,2004 at Citizens Bank Park, Jim Thome hit his 400th career home run, surpassing Al Kaline for 37th on the all-time home run list.

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In 2004, Jim Thome won the Lou Gehrig Memorial Award, which is given to players who best exemplify Gehrig's character and integrity both on and off the field.

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Since Philadelphia was willing to trade him, Jim Thome waived the no-trade clause in his contract for the good of the team and requested that if possible, they trade him to either the Chicago White Sox or Cubs so he could be near his father.

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Jim Thome became Chicago's regular designated hitter in April 2006 and flourished in his first season in Chicago.

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Jim Thome set a major league record by scoring in each of Chicago's first 17 games.

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On May 1,2006, Jim Thome returned to Cleveland to play against the Indians in his first game as a visitor at Jacobs Field, and received an unenthusiastic reception.

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On September 16,2007, Jim Thome joined the 500 home run club by hitting a walk-off home run against Los Angeles Angels pitcher Dustin Moseley.

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Jim Thome became the 23rd major leaguer to reach the milestone and the third in the 2007 MLB season, as well as the first ever to do it with a walk-off home run.

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Jim Thome celebrated by pointing upward in homage to his late mother as he rounded the bases.

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Jim Thome's hitting remained strong during Chicago's 2009 season, as he hit 23 home runs in 107 games, including his 550th career home run on June 1.

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Jim Thome waived his no-trade clause because he thought the Dodgers could win the World Series, but Jim Thome's only appearances with the Dodgers were as a pinch hitter, due to chronic foot injuries that limited his mobility.

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Jim Thome reunited with former Cleveland teammate Manny Ramirez in Los Angeles.

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Toward the end of the season, Jim Thome commented that playing with the Twins made him feel rejuvenated.

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Jim Thome was the Indians' all-time leader in home runs, walks, and strikeouts.

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Jim Thome called coming back to Philadelphia a "no-brainer" in his news conference.

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Jim Thome mentioned that, due to Ryan Howard's Achilles tendon injury, he would "spend the offseason preparing himself to play first base once or twice a week", despite not having played defensively since 2007.

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Jim Thome finished the nine-game interleague road trip with four home runs and 14 RBIs.

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On July 2,2013, Jim Thome joined the White Sox organization as special assistant to the general manager.

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On January 24,2018, Jim Thome was elected into the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

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Jim Thome was formally inducted on July 29,2018, alongside Trevor Hoffman, Vladimir Guerrero, and Chipper Jones.

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Jim Thome was the first person to be inducted as an Indian without the use of Chief Wahoo on his plaque since the mascot's inception in 1947.

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On February 23,2022, Jim Thome was announced as the new president of the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association, succeeding Brooks Robinson.

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Jim Thome is regarded as a great example of a "pure" power hitter, as indicated by his.

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Jim Thome's consistency was a draw for clubs to continue to sign him, even toward the very end of his 22-year career and after most sluggers' productivity fades.

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Since Jim Thome was a pull hitter, opposing teams often employed a defensive shift against him; by playing three infielders on the right side of the field and the outfielders towards his pull side, teams put themselves in better position to field batted balls.

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Jim Thome is an example of a "three-true-outcome" player; 47.

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Jim Thome averaged 111 bases on balls per 162 games, and currently ranks seventh on the MLB career walks list with 1,747.

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Jim Thome led the American League in walks in three seasons, all with Cleveland.

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Jim Thome is a self-described slow runner, but has said that he always hustled.

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Jim Thome began his career playing third base and did so until the 1997 season, when he converted to first base to make room at third after the Indians traded for Matt Williams.

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Jim Thome was known throughout the baseball world for wearing high socks and for his unique batting stance.

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Jim Thome adopted this stance from Charlie Manuel, who was the Indians hitting coach, and since then Ryan Howard has adopted it.

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Thanks to his gregarious personality, Jim Thome is the rare athlete who played in several cities and was beloved everywhere he went.

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Jim Thome was similarly loved in his long stints in Cleveland and Chicago, as well as shorter runs in Los Angeles and Baltimore.

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Jim Thome was one of few players whose prime was during the steroid era and who was not suspected of using steroids; Thome adamantly denies ever using performance-enhancing drugs.

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Jim Thome has established funds to put his 10 nieces and nephews through college.

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ESPN's SportsCenter reported that shortly after his nephew, Brandon, was paralyzed in an accident, he asked Jim Thome to hit a home run for him; Jim Thome obliged, hitting two in the subsequent game.

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Jim Thome is a philanthropist and provided help to the communities surrounding the teams for which he played.

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