Pressure for Thome? Not really

Whatever pressure the Phillies feel to win this year, it's been-here-done-that for team leader Jim Thome.

Originally Published: June 7, 2004
By Tony Gwynn | Special to ESPN Insider
The Philadelphia Phillies haven't made the playoffs since 1993, but expectations are definitely high this season. Philly fans hope that the offseason acquisition of closer Billy Wagner is the final piece of a World Series puzzle.

For first baseman Jim Thome, being the leader of a team with high expectations is just part of the deal. Pressure? What pressure? It's simply normal, everyday, been-here-done-that for Thome.

When the Phillies got off to a 1-6 start this season, sure, maybe Thome felt some pressure. But since then, the Phillies have recovered and are challenging the defending world champion Florida Marlins for first place in the NL East.