Jim Thome, Omar Vizquel and Charles Nagy are coming back to Cleveland, at least for a winter weekend.
Years after the three were part of the great Indians teams of the 1990s, they'll return to Progressive Field for appearances at Tribe Fest, scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 25-26.
The trio will join current Indians such as manager Terry Francona, Nick Swisher, Jason Kipnis, Michael Bourn, Michael Brantley, Carlos Santana and others at the second annual event. Former Indians great Kenny Lofton was already scheduled to be in attendance.
The group will be part of autograph sessions, interviews on the main stage and more as the Indians turn their wintry home into a baseball wonderland and look ahead to a 2014 season with lofty aspirations. Not since Thome, Vizquel and Nagy were in their primes have the Tribe made back-to-back postseason runs, but their success made them heroes in some cases.
Few Indians of his generation might be remembered as fondly as Thome, who hit 337 home runs and drove in 937 runs over 13 seasons in a Cleveland uniform. Nine of those were walk-off homers, three of them against the division-rival Tigers. He left as a free agent following the 2002 season, but returned one final time in a midseason trade in 2011. His 611th and next-to-last home run came at Progressive Field, albeit as a Baltimore Oriole, in 2012.
Though Vizquel is now technically a division rival, having joined the Tigers as their first-base and infield coach, he'll always be remembered as an Indian. His 11 seasons in Cleveland from 1994-2004 were the prime years of his amazing 24-year Major League career. He won eight Gold Glove awards and garnered three All-Star selections as an Indians shortstop, forming the strength of his future Hall of Fame case.
Nagy spent 13 of his 14 Major League seasons in Cleveland, including five consecutive years with 15 or more wins from 1995-99. He went 33-11 combined in 1995-96.
Tickets for Tribe Fest are being sold in advance at $10 for adults and are on sale now at indians.com/Tribe Fest. Kids age 12 and under can get an advance ticket for free when reserved with a paying adult, up to two per adult ticket. Kids tickets at the gate are $12 the day of the event.
Due to large crowds last year and expected high demand this year, the Indians are breaking up this year's event into three sessions: Jan. 25 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. ET and 4-8 p.m., and Jan. 26 from noon to 6 p.m. Tickets to guarantee spots in autograph sessions are being sold in conjunction with general admission tickets.
Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason.