Former White Sox slugger elected to Baseball Hall of Fame on the first ballot along with three other players. The Peoria, Ill. native played four seasons with the team.
Jim Thome was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame on Wednesday along with three other players for the class of 2018. The former White Sox designated hitter was elected after his first time on the ballot.
Thome, along with Vladimir Guerrero, Chipper Jones and Trevor Hoffman will be inducted into the Hall of Fame on July 29 in Cooperstown, NY. The native of Peoria, Ill. played four seasons with the Sox from 2006-2009. In those four seasons, Thome hit .265/.391/.542 with 134 home runs and 369 RBI’s for the Sox.
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In 22 total seasons, however, Thome hit .276/.402/.554 with 612 home runs, 1,699 RBIs, and 2,348 hits. Thome began his major league career in 1991 with the Cleveland Indians. He was selected in the 13th round in 1989 from Illinois Central College in East Peoria, Ill. With the Indians, Thome became a fan favorite and helped lead Cleveland to the 1995 World Series.
Many Sox fans remember when Thome was hitting home runs with the Indians. With Cleveland, Thome hit 337 home runs over the span of 13 seasons (1991-2002; 2011). Before coming to the Sox via trade, Thome had a solid career with the Philadelphia Phillies from 2003-2005 and 2012. Through four seasons with the Phillies, Thome hit 101 home runs with 281 RBI’s.
Thome didn’t have much success with the Phillies during his first tenure with the team as Philadelphia failed to reach the postseason. After being acquired via trade by the Sox after the 2005 season, Thome quickly became a fan favorite and hit a home run in his first game with the team. Thome would have some great moments in a Sox uniform.
Some of those moments include hitting his 500th home run to win the game against the Los Angeles Angels on Sept. 16, 2007. In 2008, Thome hit his most memorable home run in Sox uniform in the infamous ‘blackout game’ which decided the American League Central division championship. Although Thome last season with the Sox was in 2009, he was able to have another productive major league season in 2010 with the rival Minnesota Twins.
Thome hit his 600th career home as a member of the Twins during the 2011 season. He would end his playing career in 2012 with the Baltimore Orioles. As Thome is set to be inducted into the Hall of Fame this July, many fans will remember him for being a class act on and off the field. Thome is also the fourth player to have played with the Sox and be elected to the Hall of Fame in the last five years.