TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) -Jim Thome thought he took care of the hard part, reaching 500 home runs. But getting the historic ball to Cooperstown has proved to be a challenge, too.
Thome had hoped to celebrate the milestone homer at the Hall of Fame by now, but the birth of his son and bad weather have stopped him from making the trip.
``The home run ball is at home. It is locked up. We are just trying to get there,'' Thome said Monday at training camp with the Chicago White Sox. ``We will get it there eventually.''
Thome hit No. 500 on Sept. 16, connecting against the Los Angeles Angels and becoming the 23rd player to reach the mark.
He couldn't go to upstate New York late last year because of his son's birth. Since then, he's had snow wipe out two trips to the Hall, where he was to hand the ball over in a presentation with his father, Chuck, and Will Stewart, the person who caught the homer.
Thome said he's hoping to get there during an off-day during the season.
``That is something you look back on and never forget,'' Thome said. ``It was a very special thing and will always be.''
Thome's priorities now move to hitting more home runs - he currently has 507 - and getting the White Sox back into contention for an AL Central title.
A career .281 hitter who has averaged over 40 home runs in his last 11 years, Thome arrived early to get extra swings in the batting cages.
``Everything is good and ready to go. That is why I come early,'' Thome said. ``I like to make sure I am on top of things.''
Thome is optimistic there will be more runs to drive in than the 96 he did a year ago with Chicago's acquisition of Nick Swisher and Orlando Cabrera.
If the new players work out, Thome is hoping the celebration of the 500th home run ball can coincide with a World Series championship.
``You come to spring training every year to win a ring. I feel blessed that I have been given this opportunity,'' Thome said. ``The ultimate goal coming into spring training is to win a championship. You have to be healthy. A lot of things have to be right.''

Recent MLB Discussions

dod 1st 5 thats it on Thu, Oct 2016 by Timmy1961
dod/cubs on Thu, Oct 2016 by Michael Cash
mlb early play on Wed, Oct 2016 by sharkey11

Top MLB Public Bets

MLB Top Stories

Thumbnail Kershaw tries to keep visitors' run going The Cubs seized a 3-2 edge in the NLCS by winning Games 4 and 5 in Los Angeles. Will Clayton Kershaw be able to save the Dodgers’...
Thumbnail North Siders' bats rise as NCLS progresses Anthony Rizzo is still batting well below .200 in the playoffs. Yet the Chicago first baseman seems to be heating up at precisely...
Thumbnail Hosts ask Urias to give them 3-1 NLCS edge Tonight, Julio Urias will make history in Game 4 of the NLCS. The Dodgers simply hope that it’s for all the right reasons.
Thumbnail Francona needs relief corps to thrive again The Blue Jays suddenly have life in the NLCS. Now, though, can they truly put fear in the Indians and send the festivities back to northern...
Thumbnail Arrieta tries to lift visitors at Chavez Ravine After getting punched in the mouth in Game 1 of the NLCS, the Dodgers struck back on Sunday night. Can they keep running with the Cubs as the action...
More inMLB Articles  

MLB Team Pages