EAST MEADOW — The Big East Meadow League Hall of Fame has opened its hallowed doors for Jim Thome. “I can die now,” said Thome as he embraced previous inductees Greg Maddux, Randy Johnson and Barry Bonds.
Believe it or not, Jim Thome (’94-’09) has the third most homers in BEML history (487) behind only fellow Hall of Fame Barry Bonds (572) and Alex Rodriguez (600+ through 2016). He also collected the fourth most RBI (1,338) and won three titles (with Love the Drake in ’96, Team Phil Chu in ’07 and the Craydawgs in ’09). Thome hit a respectable .285, but you didn’t roster him for his ability to collect singles; drafting him meant you were after some of the most unadulterated power to be had.
Thome broke in with the 1994 Love the Drake squad and went out on a high note, capturing the ’09 title with the Craydawgs. Though he never won an MVP award, he hit 30+ homers in 12 of his 16 seasons. Thome’s career reached its apex in the 2002 season, when he hit .304 with 52 HRs and 118 RBI for the Bears.
“Thomer” spent his first eight seasons in the Love the Drake family. He proudly donned the LTD cap for his official HoF portrait, hung in the basement of the East Meadow Public Library. He is the first BEML Hall of Famer for the Love the Drake franchise.