Thome Hits No. 511 as Chisox Crush Rays

Chicago DH now tied with Mel Ott for No. 21 all-time in long balls
By Mike Buss,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 19, 2008 12:55 AM CDT
Tampa Bay Rays pitching coach Jim Hickey (48) tries to calm down pitcher Jeff Niemann, right, after giving up back-to-back, third inning home runs to Chicago on Friday, April 18, 2008.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Jim Thome hit his 511th career home run and Javier Vazquez won his third consecutive start to lead the Chicago White Sox past the Tampa Bay Rays, 9-2 on Friday. Thome connected in the third inning for a three-run shot off rookie Jeff Niemann, who was making his second career start. The next batter, Paul Konerko, homered to make it 4-0.

The White Sox designated hitter tied Hall of Famer Mel Ott for 21st place all-time with his fourth homer of the season, which hit an overhanging catwalk. Thome has reached base safely in all 26 games he has played at Tropicana Field. Vazquez (3-1) gave up two runs and six hits over 6 1-3 innings, striking out out four, walking one.