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Jim Thome plays third base for first time since 1996

Sep 25, 2011, 5:19 PM EDT

Jim Thome AP

For one pitch anyway.

Jim Thome, perhaps appearing in his final game in Cleveland for the Indians, took to his old position for one pitch in the ninth inning Sunday, playing third base for the first time since Sept. 29, 1996.

Thome had entered the game as a pinch-hitter in the eighth.  He left to a standing ovation after the one pitch.

It was the first time Thome had appeared anywhere in the field since he played one game at first base for the White Sox in 2007.  He was last a regular first baseman in 2005.  Thome played 492 games at third base in his first six seasons in the majors, but none sense.

Thome hasn’t announced whether he’ll return for a 22nd big-league season in 2012.  He became just the eighth player to reach 600 career homers earlier this year.

  1. aceshigh11 - Sep 25, 2011 at 6:08 PM

    That’s a really nice gesture.

    I know the phrase is overused, but Thome IS a class act.

  2. JBerardi - Sep 25, 2011 at 6:12 PM

    “Thome hasn’t announced whether he’ll return for a 22nd big-league season in 2012. “

    From the looks of this, he might have announced it to his manager. If that’s the case, what a great way for him to go out. See you in Cooperstown, Jim.

    • firedude7160 - Sep 25, 2011 at 9:00 PM

      I was thinking the same thing. And if that is the case, do you think they let him play first on Wednesday?

  3. irreverendsara - Sep 25, 2011 at 9:02 PM

    I would love to see him play another year!

  4. dluxxx - Sep 25, 2011 at 10:09 PM

    I know the Twins would have him back. Lord know they could use him again.

    • Tim OShenko - Sep 25, 2011 at 11:38 PM

      As much as I’d love seeing Thome in a Twins uniform next year, I’m afraid his bat would just go to waste. The Twins are at least 2-3 years away from being real contenders again, and that’s if GM Bill Smith actually makes some smart moves for once.

      It’d be nice to see Thome get a WS ring before retiring; maybe signing with Phillies – though it would be a limited role – would be his best option.

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