BALTIMORE -- This is Jim Thome's time.
He was 2-for-20 with three walks and 11 strikeouts, and 0-for-10 with seven strikeouts as a pinch-hitter before he went 3-for-5 with two doubles and one RBI as the team's designated hitter in a 9-6 victory over Baltimore on Friday at Camden Yards. The Phillies will have Thome as their DH during this nine-game road trip through Baltimore, Minnesota and Toronto with hopes he gets on track and starts producing offensively. Because Thome will not play in the field once the Phillies return to their normal National League schedule, this will be Thome's final time this season to get regular at-bats.
"He can still hit one," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said, when it was mentioned Thome hadn't homered in Spring Training or the regular season. "He might hit that warehouse tonight [at Camden Yards]. He's still got something in him."
Thome didn't hit one out, but he drove the ball to right-center field for a ground-rule double in the second innings. He then doubled to left field in the fourth inning.
"It's always nice," said Thome, who returned from the disabled list this week. "That's why we play. That's why you work hard. When you go on rehab, you're injured, all that time down there, you take it serious. You work hard. And you hope that that hard work pays off when you're in a situation like this coming back. It doesn't guarantee anything, but it feels nice to contribute and play a part in a 'W,' for sure."