COOPERSTOWN (WBNG) - Jim Thome toured the Baseball Hall of Fame on Tuesday, prior to his official induction this summer. Thome was voted into the Class of 2018 in his first year on the ballot. In his 22 seasons, Thome hit 612 home runs.
"How do you ever dream of this happening," said Class of 2018 Hall of Famer Jim Thome. "Walking through and having all of those great players stare at ya."
The former first baseman stopped at the plaques of many fellow sluggers who paved the way for him, such as Harmon Killebrew and Hank Aaron. When Thome reached Babe Ruth's plaque, emotion took over. Thome said the emotions were because of what Ruth meant to him and the entire baseball world.
"The name Babe, I think, represents baseball," said Thome. "It has for years. Anybody that's watched baseball, that's been around it, has heard the name Babe Ruth. The iconic name."
Thome continued, "being a home run hitter, you relate to a guy that did the same thing, him in a way higher standard. You kind of resonate with somebody that also, to a degree, was doing the same thing."
The Class of 2018 will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame July 29.