That meant his wife, three children and father-in-law got to see Thomas hit his 500th home run. And they were gone when Thomas got ejected.
"They had to leave for the airport at 1:45. My daughter said, 'Dad, you've got to do it in the first couple of at-bats,' " he said.
Thomas hit a three-run shot in the first inning of the Toronto Blue Jays' 8-5 loss to the Minnesota Twins, becoming the 21st major leaguer to reach 500.
But in the ninth, Thomas was ejected by plate umpire Mark Wegner after being called out on strikes for the second time in the game. Blue Jays manager John Gibbons came out to argue and also got tossed.
"I'm probably the first to get 500 home runs and get thrown out of the ballgame," Thomas said. "That's something I didn't want to happen, but the moment just got the best of me."
Thomas also had an RBI double and tied his season high with four RBI.
Carlos Silva (6-8), who gave up Thomas' milestone homer, was the winner and Joe Nathan finished for his 15th save. Jason Frasor (1-3) took the loss.
Thomas came up after Matt Stairs' RBI single in the first and sent Silva's 1-2 pitch an estimated 396 feet into the left-field stands.
The Metrodome crowd responded with a standing ovation for the two-time AL MVP. Thomas put his head down for his home run trot and then pointed toward his family down the right-field line when he crossed the plate as Toronto players spilled out of the dugout to congratulate him.
Todd Eisenlohr, sitting in the fifth row and wearing a jersey of Twins player Jason Bartlett jersey, caught the ball in his glove.
"I lost it in the roof as it was coming down," Eisenlohr said. He said he traded the souvenir ball for an autographed ball, bat and jersey.
Through games of June 28 (x-active)
|1. Hank Aaron||755|
|2. x-Barry Bonds||749|
|3. Babe Ruth||714|
|4. Willie Mays||660|
|5. x-Sammy Sosa||601|
|6. Frank Robinson||586|
|7. x-Ken Griffey Jr.||584|
|8. Mark McGwire||583|
|9. Harmon Killebrew||573|
|10. Rafael Palmeiro||569|
|11. Reggie Jackson||563|
|12. Mike Schmidt||548|
|13. Mickey Mantle||536|
|14. Jimmie Foxx||534|
|15. Willie McCovey||521|
|15. Ted Williams||521|
|17. Ernie Banks||512|
|17. Eddie Mathews||512|
|19. Mel Ott||511|
|20. Eddie Murray||504|
|21. x-Frank Thomas||500|
Source: Adam R. Smith