The long and storied Major League career of Jim Thome begins at the Metrodome as the Cleveland Indians defeat the first place Minnesota Twins, 8-4.
Thome hit seventh and played at third base in manager Mike Hargrove’s lineup for the Indians, which entered the day in seventh place with a dreadful 43-88 record. As he would do plenty of times in his career, Thome struck out swinging in his first at bat in the bottom of the second against Minnesota’s starter, David West. Leading off the fourth against reliever Tom Edens with the Indians on top 4-3, he notched his first career hit, an opposite field liner to left. He would come around to score his first career run on a single later in the inning by Alex Cole.
Batting in the fifth against Minnesota reliever (and future Indians pitching coach) Carl Willis, he flew out to left to end the inning. In his final at bat of the day against his fourth different pitcher, Terry Leach, Thome singled again to left, scoring Jose Gonzalez for his first career RBI.
Thome will play in 27 games for the Indians that season, hitting .255 with a homer, two triples, and four doubles to go with nine runs batted in.
Also on this date in Tribe History:
1907 – Addie Joss tosses a one-hitter against the Detroit Tigers.
1913 – Vean Gregg strikes out Ty Cobb three times in a row but the Tigers get the best of the Naps as Cobb drives in the winning run with a 12th inning double.
1916 – Brothers Stan Coveleski (Cleveland) and Harry Coveleski (Detroit) both pitch in the same game for the first and only time in their MLB careers.
1941 – Future Indians player Ken Harrelson is born.
1986 – Former Indians player and general manager Hank Greenberg passes away at the age of 75.
1993 – New York’s Jim Abbott no-hits the Indians, 4-0.