Report: Thome to return to Phillies

Jim Thome is reportedly returning to year contract.

Phillies beat writer Todd Zolecki broke the news Friday night. The deal is pending Thome passing a physical exam.

Thome signed as a free agent with the Phillies prior to the 2003 season and spent three years with the team before being traded to the Chicago White Sox for outfielder Aaron Rowand.

Phillies manager Charlie Manuel has a close bond with Thome from their days in the Cleveland Indians organization when Thome was an up-and-coming player and Manuel was the team's hitting coach.

The big left-handed hitter had his most productive season in red pinstripes in 2003, finishing with 47 home runs and 131 RBI.

Thome began last season with the Minnesota Twins and was dealt to the Indians at the trade deadline. In 93 games between the teams, Thome hit 15 home runs and drove in 50 runs.

Thome became only the eighth player in major league history to hit 600 home runs when he cracked both Nos. 599 and 600 on August 15, 2011 against the Detroit Tigers.

Thome will be a solid short term replacement at first base for Philadelphia while Ryan Howard recovers from a torn Achilles he suffered on the final play of Game 5 of the National League Division Series against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Once Howard returns to action, Thome will surely provide power off the bench.