Whether you root for the Cubs or the Sox come baseball season, all of Chicago can join together when one of the city’s most loved baseball players is recognized and celebrated. Last month former White Sox player, Frank Thomas, was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame.
Although he was born in Georgia, Frank Thomas, also known as “The Big Hurt,” called Chicago home from 1990-2005. He made a name for himself as a designated hitter and first baseman and was known for his impressive home run power, helped by playing football in college and then later by practicing his swing with a piece of rebar he found during a renovation project in Old Comiskey Park, now called U.S. Cellular Field. With 521 home runs to his name during his professional career, it was no wonder that he was one of baseball’s biggest stars in the 1990’s. Now, he can add “Baseball Hall of Fame Inductee” to his long list of accomplishments.
Being elected to the Hall of Fame brings Thomas into a very elite group. He and the two other players elected this year, Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux, bring the total number of Hall of Fame Inductees to 306. Only 246 of that total were baseball players, with the remaining being coaches, managers, and executives. The National Baseball Hall of Fame is a place where those who were a part of professional baseball are honored for excelling at their craft.
Even though he is just now being recognized nationally for his achievements, Chicago has known he was special for quite some time. In fact, The Fine Art Studio of Rotblatt-Amrany was commissioned by the White Sox to create a life-size bronze statue of Frank Thomas in 2011. The statue depicts him right after having swung his bat, presumably completing another of his famous home runs. Fans can still remember the days when “The Big Hurt” took the plate when they view the statue currently standing tall at U.S. Cellular Field.
Baseball is such a tradition in Chicago, and it’s exciting to hear when one of our players gets recognized. So let’s come together, Chicago, to congratulate the superior White Sox player, Frank Thomas. He is just one more reason that Chicago is the perfect place to be.