Thome hops to 10th on the all-time career home run list

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Jim Thome blasted two home runs in the Twins’ 8-6 loss to the Rays on Saturday, moving into sole possession of 10th place on Major League Baseball’s all-time career home run list.  Here’s a look at the updated list, with the still-active names in bold:

Barry Bonds            762
Hank Aaron             755
Babe Ruth               714
Willie Mays              660
Ken Griffey Jr.          630
Sammy Sosa          609
Alex Rodriguez     595
Frank Robinson     586
Mark McGwire         583
Jim Thome            574
Harmon Killebrew   573
Rafael Palmeiro     569
Reggie Jackson     563

That’s some rather impressive company, and it really must have been a special day for Thome.   According to MLB.com’s Kelly Thesier, the veteran slugger received a phone call from
Killebrew shortly
after passing him on the list. 

“I’m happy for him. Jim is a great guy and if anyone passed me, I’m
glad it was him,” Killebrew said from Arizona. “I hope he hits a bunch more over the rest of the year
for the Minnesota Twins.”

Thome, 39, has done everything that the Twinkies have asked of him this season since signing a bargain one-year, $1.5 million contract in the winter.  Through 124 at-bats, he has a .258/.388/.597 slash line, 10 home runs and 25 RBI.  He also owns a 1.058 OPS against right-handed pitchers.

Jon Niese leaves start with knee pain

PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 17:  Jonathon Niese #49 of the New York Mets delivers a pitch during the first inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on August 17, 2016 in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
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Mets starter Jon Niese left his start Tuesday night against the Cardinals due to left knee pain.

Niese walked two and gave up an RBI single before leaving with a trainer with one out in the bottom of the first inning. He was eventually charged with three earned runs. Robert Gsellman, just up from Las Vegas, took over, making his major league debut under unexpected circumstances.

Niese, who has not pitched well at all since coming over in a trade with the Pirates, is likely to be placed on the disabled list after the game or before tomorrow’s game.

Mark Trumbo’s home run streak ends

OAKLAND, CA - AUGUST 11:  Mark Trumbo #45 of the Baltimore Orioles hits an RBI single against the Oakland Athletics during the fourth inning at the Oakland Coliseum on August 11, 2016 in Oakland, California. The Baltimore Orioles defeated the Oakland Athletics 9-6. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
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Mark Trumbo still has many chances to hit a home run tonight — it’s only been an inning or so in the Nats-Orioles game — but his weird home run streak is over.

Coming into tonight’s game, Trumbo’s last seven hits had been homers. The all-time record had been 11, set by Mark McGwire back in 2001. The last time Trumbo got a hit that wasn’t a dong was back on August 11. Later in that game, however, he hit a grand slam. After that he went 6 for his next 34, with all those safeties dingers.

But that’s over now. In the first inning tonight he drove in a run with a two-out single. Then he was thrown out trying to stretch it to two. Good job on the RBIs, Mark. Bad job on the base running. Judgment withheld on the homer streak because, really, that’s just kind of weird and cool.