Batting fifth, and playing first base, number 25 … Jim Thome.
Before the first pitch, they cheered Thome’s introduction. It was a thin crowd, and the ovation wasn’t nearly as big as it would have been had it happened in Philly or in a town that regularly turns out to support its baseball team. Even so, they applauded the man, who hadn’t played the field for nearly five years. Before Sunday, the last time Thome needed to bring his glove to work was June, 2007.
“It was good to be back out there,” said Thome, who went 0 for 3 in the Phillies’ 5-4 loss to the Pirates. “I wish we could have won the ballgame. That’s part of it. But, I guess, all in all, it felt good, yeah.”
...“I think he can play about 20 games,” Manuel said. “I don’t know. He might play more. If we start pushing him, we’re asking a whole lot out of him. He has a chronic back problem. I used to say all the time, a first baseman dives a lot. And he’s a big guy. When he hits the ground, it always seems like his chest is always hitting the ground first. If you think about it, if he plays 20 or 25 games, that’s enough.
“I’m going to pick my spots and the pitchers I want to play him against. It depends. He might play a little bit more while Howard is out. We just have to wait and see. Just as soon as I say how many he’s going to play, it won’t happen that way. It’ll be short or more, and you’ll say, ‘Oh, he’s under playing him, he’s over playing him,’ or whatever.”
Posted: April 08, 2012 at 07:11 PM | 9 comment(s)
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