Earlier this summer, baseball fans and the assembled media watched in anticipation as the Yankees' Derek Jeter approached 3000 hits. When he finally passed that mark on July 9, the news splashed across headlines from coast to coast.
Jeter was the 28th Major Leaguer to do it.
Earlier this week, Minnesota Twins slugger Jim Thome became just the eighth major leaguer to reach a far more elusive number: 600 career home runs. Only Babe Ruth, Willie Mays, Henry Aaron, Ken Griffey, Jr., Sammy Sosa, Barry Bonds, and Alex Rodriguez had done it before.
In an interview with Doug Tribou, Lavelle E. Neal III, who covers the Twins for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, explains that Jeter's trouble with the elusive 3000 is part of why Thome's accomplishment garnered relatively little attention.
"It would have been interesting to see what would have happened if Thome had hit 599 and then there was a couple days before he hit 600," Neal says. "But Thome didn't wait. As soon as he hit 599 he did hit 600, so we'll never know."
Now that Thome's in the news, he's answering questions about whether he'd welcome a trade to a World Series contender. The 40-year-old has twice played in the World Series, but has never brought home a ring.
This segment aired on August 20, 2011.