Jim Thome's name is very well-known around the baseball world, and rightfully so.
The former White Sox slugger hit 612 home runs during his 22-year major-league career, but is equally known for being an all-around good guy.
Perhaps Thome's name is most popular in his hometown of Peoria, IL.
Some people get a street named after them in their hometown after achieving fame. Not Jim Thome. Jim Thome gets a highway named after him.
The Peoria Journal Star reported that a portion of the Route 24 roadway at the Louisville Slugger Sports Complex will be named after Thome.
Thome's portion of Route 24 will be coined 'Jim Thome Expressway.' The aforementioned section will extend from Adams Street in Bartonville to Griswold Street in Peoria.
Thome is currently serving in the White Sox front office as the Special Assistant to the Senior VP/General Manager.
The Summer of Jimmy Butler Answering Rumors added another chapter on Wednesday, with the Bulls' All-Star answering questions on ESPN's The Jump with Rachel Nichols.
Butler was asked a bevy of questions about his opinion on trade rumors involving himself, the trade that sent Derrick Rose to the Knicks and whether he believes he'll remain with the Bulls.
It's been a busy offseason for Butler's Bulls, which missed the playoffs last year for the first time in eight seasons. In addition to the Rose trade and drafting Michigan State's Denzel Valentine, the Bulls reportedly dangled Butler's name in trade discussions on draft night.
And though general manager Gar Forman vehemently denied the Bulls were shopping the 26-year-old Butler, the constant rumors appear to have taken a toll on Butler's belief about his future in Chicago.
"I don't think anything's for certain, I really don't," Butler responded when asked if he believed he'd be with the Bulls next season. "I love the city of Chicago, Chicago basketball, I think everybody knows that. They drafted me, I've been here my entire career, but nothing's for certain."
Butler also admitted that the Bulls' inconsistent play that resulted in a 42-40 record - their worst since 2010 - magnified the reported rift between him and Rose.
"I can't say I was surprised by (the Rose trade). I knew it had to be one of us, to tell you the truth. Obviously I enjoyed playing with him. I came into the league when he was the MVP, I got so much respect for the guy. I have no bad things to say about him and I wish him the best moving forward," Butler said.
"Because we didn't win I think everything comes up. I think if we win there's nothing to say, we're fine, we get along together, we'd probably still be teammates to tell you the truth."
Despite the rumors, and the front office's refusal to commit to Butler, the Marquette product says his relationship with Forman and the rest is "good."
"I can't say we talk about everything because we don't but I think most of the imporant things, I get a phone call or a text message and we'll talk," Butler said. "They'll take my opinion on some things, but I'm a player."
If you’re a hockey fan and were on Twitter around 3 p.m. Central time today, you probably looked skeptical as the trade news hit.
As first reported by Nick Kypreos, P.K. Subban is heading to Nashville and Shea Weber is going to Montreal.
We can imagine your reaction because we had it too. Eyes bulged. Mouths gaped. You checked the accounts of those venerable scribes tweeting the news because the accounts had to be fake, right?
Nope, it was true. And just like that, another Central Division team will have a very different look come the fall.
Sure, the Predators lost a great defenseman in Weber. He has a howitzer of a shot that has left those brave (read: crazy) enough to block it in plenty of pain. Jonathan Toews tweeted good luck to Weber, and “thanks for leaving our division.” Yeah, Weber left an impression. His shot left a bigger one, sometimes in the colors of black and blue, and Central foes won’t miss seeing it five or six games per season. But with Subban the Predators will do just fine. Subban is a great player and charismatic individual, possessing one of those personalities of which the NHL doesn’t have nearly enough.
Welcome to another Central change. St. Louis is facing some. The Blues already traded goaltender Brian Elliott. Per Post-Dispatch reporter Jeremy Rutherford, Kevin Shattenkirk expects the Blues to trade him. David Backes’ and Troy Brouwer’s status with the team is up in the air.
Minnesota hasn’t made any big changes player-wise (yet) but did at the top, hiring Bruce Boudreau in May. The Wild have gotten to the postseason regularly lately but haven’t gotten too far – they can thank the Blackhawks for three of those exits. Minnesota probably needed a new voice.
But does hiring Boudreau, a consistent regular-season coach who’s struggled to get the big postseason victories – again, see the Blackhawks two years ago – improve Minnesota’s chances?
The Blackhawks have gone through this makeover thing just about every year, and they’ve already done it again this offseason. Andrew Shaw’s trade to Montreal, that same Montreal that just sent Subban packing, means they’ll be missing a net-front presence that Shaw brought on a steadier basis than anyone else the past five seasons. It’s not the only void they need to fill. A veteran defenseman wouldn’t hurt. Neither would another forward with some experience. They have some cap space, but will there be enough to get both?
The Subban-Weber trade is one of those blockbusters we don’t see often anymore. It’s staggering. It’s eye-popping. There won’t be anything as big as this for a while but, with free agency opening on Friday, there will nevertheless be other changes in the NHL.
The Central is already looking a little different. Imagine what it’ll look like by September.