Countdown Thome’s 25 Greatest Moments: #16-20
Vince Guerrieri | On 02, Aug 2014
He’s regarded as one of the nicest people in baseball. But as beloved as Jim Thome might be off the field, he’s still feared on it. From his arrival in Cleveland as a raw third baseman with a powerful bat to his sojourns in Philadelphia, L.A., the South Side of Chicago and Minnesota, Thome’s had more than his share of his most memorable moments. We’ve selected the 25 biggest moments in Thome’s career.
Let’s countdown the next five:
#20 May 29, 2006 – It was Jim Thome’s third game as an opponent at Jacobs Field, but his first home run against the Tribe, when he tagged Cliff Lee in the first for a two-run jack as the White Sox took a 4-0 lead in the first inning. Thome also hit a two-run home run in the sixth inning off Guillermo Mota, his 450th career home run.
#19 July 3, 2002 – Indians at Yankee Stadium. Jim Thome takes David Wells deep on a full count in the seventh inning, marking his seventh straight game with a home run. The next day, Thome went 0-for-3 with a walk, depriving him of an eighth straight game with a home run, which would have tied the major league record set by Dale Long, Don Mattingly and Ken Griffey Jr. But Thome set a club record which still stands. The tear also sent him on his way to setting a club record with 52 homers that season.
#18 July 20, 2008 – It was throwback uniform day at U.S. Cellular Field. Jim Thome came up to lead off the seventh against the Royals’ Ramon Ramirez with the White Sox down 6-5. He stroked a double into the left-field corner for his 2,000th career hit. Two batters later, Nick Swisher homered to give Chicago a 7-6 lead, but the Royals came back to win 8-7.
#17 Aug. 14, 2008 – The White Sox were in the thick of the AL Central race, and hosting the Kansas City Royals. Thome stepped up to face Joel Peralta with Carlos Quentin and Ken Griffey Jr. on base. He jacked one to right field, hitting a three-run homer. Paul Konerko and Alexei Ramirez also homered, and Royals manager Trey Hillman lifted Peralta for Rob Tejada, who promptly got hammered by Juan Uribe for a solo home run. It was one of only seven times in major league history where back-to-back-to-back-to-back home runs were hit.
#16 October 7, 1999 – With the bases juiced against John Wasdin, Jim Thome clubbed a home run at Jacobs Field, becoming the first major league player ever to hit two grand slams in the postseason. Four days later, he hit two home runs in a postseason game for the second time in his career (a mark equaled among Tribe players by Manny Ramirez), but the Indians fell three games to two in the five-game series against the Red Sox. All told, Jim Thome has 17 postseason home runs.