Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Jim Thome-600 Home Runs

Jim ThomeImage via WikipediaI have been a baseball fan nearly all my life.  When I was a kid, my father used to take me to a few Washington Senators games until they moved to Texas to become the Texas Rangers when I was 10 years old.  My hero from those days was Frank "Hondo" Howard.  Howard was one of the more feared batters during his day and hit some titanic home runs.

When I think of some of the all time great home run hitters, a lot of the usual names come immediately to mind; Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson and a few others.  One name that does not immediately jump out to me is Jim Thome, who did something the other night that only 7 other baseball players have ever done; he hit his 600th career home run.

The top 10 home run hitters of all time are:
  1. Barry Bonds-762
  2. Hank Aaron-755
  3. Babe Ruth-714
  4. Willie Mays-660
  5. Ken Griffey, Jr-630
  6. Alex Rodriguez-626
  7. Sammy Sosa-609
  8. Jim Thome-600
  9. Frank Robinson-586
  10. Mark McGwire-583
The thing about Thome that has stuck out in my mind during the steroid era is that unlike some of his contemporaries in the list above there has not been an inkling of scandal or implication that he has used performance enhancing drugs.  Still, because of the era in which he played, there will be those who will look at his career with suspicion.  Unlike some of his contemporaries who had large swings in statistical performance, Thome's career has been a model of consistency, workman like effort.  Congratulations to Jim Thome for a fantastic career.
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