Jim Thome couldn't find work this offseason. He couldn't find work through the first month of the season. He's been relegated to working out on his own to stay in game-shape. Yet, with all the hurdles ahead of him, Thome still hopes to play later this season.
Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer says Thome has spoke to Phillies manager Charlie Manuel, but there is nothing developing there. The two are simply close friends. In fact, Manuel has often said Thome is like a son to him. Thome is still pressing, still working, and will continue to search for a team willing to sign him.
Thome has been a productive hitter throughout his career, and he could probably still hit when inserted into a Major League lineup. However, Thome would be limited in the field. And at his age, 42, injuries would certainly be a concern. Gelb points out, though, that if Thome can't find work playing baseball, it would surprise no one if he ended up coaching.
Thome has 612 career home runs and has a statue being erected in his honor in Cleveland. The All-Star slugger spent 13 seasons in Cleveland and performed well for the Indians. Overall in his 22-year career, Thome is a .276/.402/.554 hitter. His home run total should make him a Hall of Famer, but the time in which played may raise questions that keep him out (as voters have shown a sudden propensity of doing).
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