Cleveland Indians honor Jim Thome with weekend of celebrations

CLEVELAND-- Indians legend Jim Thome answered a few questions ahead of a weekend of events at Progressive Field celebrating his career.

Thome, a member of the Indians from 1991 to 2002, was inducted in the MLB Hall of Fame in Cooperstown on July 29.

It's probably not a coincidence that one of the upper deck boxes where the retired numbers are displayed was covered Friday evening. Thome's No. 25 will likely hang next to Bob Feller, Larry Doby and Bob Lemon as a part of Cleveland history this weekend.

Thome's hanging No. 25 (WJW Photo)

For the fans, there will be Jim Thome Hall of Fame fireworks after the game on Friday.

Then on Saturday, the first 20,000 fans through the gates at Progressive Field get a Jim Thome jersey. The celebration continues with a pregame ceremony at 3:30 p.m. Fans can also check out the slugger's Cooperstown plaque in Heritage Park from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Last weekend, he was honored in Chicago when the White Sox hosted the Indians. He spent three seasons over his 22-year career with the White Sox and retired by signing a one-day contract with the Tribe.

Thome said the best part of his career was "that long journey of 0 for 12, going man, I got to find left field, I just got to get a hit.  And then, all of a sudden they shift on you, and they're pounding you in, but you don't want to, like chicken wing balls to the left, because if they leave one out over the play you can hit it in the seats. So, that up-and-down, cat-and-mouse was the best part for me."

While Thome is not around the Indians clubhouse as much these days, he sees something special with the current team.

"Cleveland is waiting for them to get in to October because of the special things that are going to happen," Thome said.

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