The Minnesota Twins have suffered through an unexpectedly miserable season–the worst kind–but tonight was a very bright spot, as Jim Thome hit two home runs at Detroit’s Comerica Park to reach the 600 homer milestone. This video shows his two shots tonight:
Thome is only the eighth player in Major League history to hit 600 homers. Here is the list:
Barry Bonds: 762
Henry Aaron: 755
Babe Ruth: 714
Willie Mays: 660
Ken Griffey Jr.: 630
Alex Rodriguez: 626
Sammy Sosa: 609
Jim Thome: 600
If we subtract the cheaters, Thome ranks no worse than fifth all-time. Which puts him ahead of sluggers like Frank Robinson, Harmon Killebrew, Mike Schmidt, Mickey Mantle, Jimmie Foxx, Willie McCovey, Ted Williams, Ernie Banks…the list goes on and on. We are talking about true greatness here, sustained over a long period of time.
It is noteworthy that, almost alone among the current generation of sluggers, no one has ever connected Thome in any way with illegal drugs. This is not merely due to an absence of evidence; rather, everyone who knows Thome seems to agree that such cheating is out of the question. A few years ago, Thome was voted the best teammate in baseball by his peers. His tenure with the Twins has certainly been consistent with that rating. So, congratulations to Jim Thome on a 20-year career of historic achievement.