Yesterday was an especially big day for the Minnesota Twins. In the afternoon, word came down that they had traded Delmon Young to the Detroit Tigers. Young would put a Tigers jersey on and bat 3rd in the night game against the Tigers. He then proceeded to hit a home run in his first at bat off Twins pitcher Francisco Liriano. It looked like it was going to be a night to forget for Twins fans. It turned out to be the exact opposite.
Jim Thome would crush career home runs 599 and 600. Thome became only the 8th player in Major League history to accomplish the feat. He was the first player ever to hit number 599 and 600 in back to back at bats, it was also his 48th multi home run game in his career.
Thome embraced his teammates, wife, children and father after he touched home plate in front of a standing ovation from over 36,000 people in Comerica Park. It was a great moment for a great guy. Thome is the first player to hit 600 home runs since Alex Rodriguez did so in August of 2010. He is also the oldest player to do so at age 40.
The most talked about topic since Thome hit is home run last night seems to be “is he a hall of famer?” I say yes. Even though he has played a majority of his career at DH, he has some great numbers. A career .277 batting average, .558 SLG%, 440 doubles, 600 home runs and 1662 RBI. Not to mention by all accounts he did it the right way (unlike some who are on the 600 list).
After the game, news came down that the Twins had signed all 3 of their first round picks. There is no doubt the trade of Delmon Young earlier in the day helped them out. Trading Young freed up $1.2 million and may have been the main reason they were able to sign first round pick Levi Michael to a $1.175 million contact.
The signing that really intrigues me is 50th overall pick Travis Harrison. Almost every scout says this kid has incredible power potential at 3B. He was drafted out of high school so it will be some time before we see him in the Major Leagues but if he turns out to be what the scouts think he can….this will be a great signing for the Twins. I am also very happy they were able to sign their first pick (30th overall) Levi Michael as he adds some depth at SS, a position they clearly don’t have much at.
It was a great day for the Twins, some history was made at the hands of Jim Thome. And the front office helped make the future look bright by signing many players from a great draft. I am interested to see what the Twins do with Thome now. Do they place him on waivers and see if he is claimed? He almost certainly would be by someone, but the Twins likely would not get much in return from him. It will be interesting to see what happens next. Congrats again to Jim Thome.