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Retired Baseball All-Star Jim Thome Connects with Giant Illinois Whitetail [PICS]

Images via Drury Outdoors

Baseball legend Jim Thome hits a home run early during an Illinois archery hunt. 

An early season Illinois archery hunt ends in a home run for retired baseball star Jim Thome.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Thome, he’s seventh among the all-time career home leaders. He’s also no stranger to a fall classic with three World Series appearances. This year, the fall classic came a little early when he shot a 196″ brute Fulton County, Illinois whitetail last week on opening morning.

Thome vertical

Opening day in Illinois offered lower than usual temperatures and high barometric pressures. Thome claimed he knew the deer was living in the area, on his persona fair chase property, but wasn’t sure if they would be crossing paths that night.

They caught a glimpse of a tall-tined buck coming though thick grass, and it slowly worked in their direction.

Thome and his cameraman were hunting in a ground blind, so they had to quickly switch windows in order to get a shot off. The buck offered a shot at 34 yards, however the shot was a little further back than anticipated.

Thome 3

They decided to let the buck lay overnight to allow time for the buck to expire. The next morning, they found the big whitetail within 15 yards of its disappearance.

Thome and cameraman

SEE ALSO: Can You Guess the Top 26 States to Tag a Record Whitetail? [PICS]

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Retired Baseball All-Star Jim Thome Connects with Giant Illinois Whitetail [PICS]