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Jimmie Foxx

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Jimmie Foxx

Jimmie Foxx

Personal Info
Birth October 22, 1907, Sudlersville, Maryland
Death: July 21, 1967, Miami, FL
Professional Career
Debut May 1, 1925, Philadelphia Athletics vs. Washington Senators, Griffith Stadium
Team(s) As Player
Philadelphia Athletics (1925 - 1935)


Boston Red Sox (1936-1942)
Chicago Cubs (1942-(1944)
Philadelphia Phillies (1945)

HOF induction: 1951
Career Highlights
American League MVP: 1932, 1933, 1938
  • Led the league in home runs: 1932 (58), 1933 (48), 1935 (36), 1939 (35)
  • Led the league in RBIs: 1932 (169), 1933 (163), 1938 (175)
  • Led the league in batting average: 1933 (.356), 1938 (.349)
  • Led the league in runs scored: 1932 (151)
  • Lifetime batting average: .325

James Emory Foxx (October 22 1907July 21 1967) was an American first baseman in Major League Baseball who was one of the greatest right-handed power hitters to ever play the sport. Foxx was the second major league player to hit 500 career home runs, and at age 32 years, 11 months, and two days, is still the youngest ever to reach that mark.

Although Foxx's name appears both as Jimmy Foxx and Jimmie Foxx in newspaper accounts, box scores, baseball cards, and other records, Foxx generally signed his name "Jimmie."

Baseball Hof
Jimmie Foxx
is a member of
the Baseball
Hall of Fame

Born in Sudlersville, Maryland, Foxx (nicknamed "Double X," "The Beast," and The Maryland Strongboy") played baseball in high school and dropped out to join a minor league team managed by former Philadelphia Athletics great "Home Run" Baker. Foxx had hoped to pitch or play third base, but since the team was short on catchers, Foxx moved behind the plate. He immediately drew interest from the Athletics and New York Yankees. Foxx signed with the A's and made his major league debut in 1925 at age 17.

The A's catching duties were already capably filled by future Hall of Famer Mickey Cochrane, so by 1927, Foxx was splitting time between catching, first base, and the outfield. In 1929, installed as the A's regular first baseman, Foxx had his breakthrough year, batting .354 and hitting 33 home runs. In 1932, Foxx hit 58 home runs, which stood as the single-season record for a right-handed batter for 66 years until Mark McGwire hit 70 in 1998. He followed up in 1933 by winning the Triple Crown with a batting average of .356, 163 RBIs, and 48 home runs. He won back-to-back MVP honors in 1932 and 1933.

Foxx was one of the three or four most feared sluggers of his era. The great Yankee pitcher Lefty Gomez once said of him, "He has muscles in his hair." In 1937 Foxx hit a ball into the third deck of the left-field stands at Yankee Stadium in New York, a very rare feat because of the distance and the angle of the stands. Gomez was the pitcher who gave it up, and when asked how far it went, he said, "I don't know, but I do know it took somebody 45 minutes to go up there and get it back."

When the Great Depression fully hit in the early 1930s, A's owner Connie Mack was unable to pay the salaries of his highly paid stars and was obliged to sell off a number of them, including the great pitcher Lefty Grove. In 1936, Mack sold Foxx's contract to the Boston Red Sox for $150,000 following a contract dispute.

Foxx played six years in Boston, including a spectacular 1938 season in which he hit 50 home runs, drove in 175 runs, batted .349, won his third MVP award, and narrowly missed winning the Triple Crown. In 1939 he hit .360, his second all-time best annual batting average. His 50 home runs would remain the single-season record for the Red Sox until David Ortiz hit 54 in 2006. Foxx shares the major league record of 13 consecutive year as with 100 rbi.s (1929-1941) with Lou Gehrig, and led baseball in home runs and rbi's during the decade of the 1930"s (1930-1939). His major league record of 12 consecutive years of 30 or more home runs (1929-1940) was broken by Barry Bonds' 13 years (1992-2004) - but he still shares the American league record in that category with Alex Rodriguez (1998-2009 current). Foxx shares the record of 12 consecutive years with both 30 home runs and 100 rbi's (1929-1940) with Alex Rodriguez (1998-2009).

Foxx's skills diminished significantly after 1941. Some sources attribute this to a drinking problem, while others attribute it to a sinus condition. He split the 1942 season between the Red Sox and Chicago Cubs, playing mostly a reserve role. He sat out the 1943 season and appeared only in 15 games in 1944, mostly as a pinch hitter.

He wound up his career with the Philadelphia Phillies in 1945 as a jack of all trades, filling in at first and third, pinch hitting, and even pitching nine games, compiling a surprising 1-0 record and 1.59 ERA over 22 2/3 innings. Interestingly, the man who was so often called the right-handed Babe Ruth throughout his career was the opposite of Ruth in this regard as well. Ruth began his big-league career as a pitcher; Foxx ended his big-league career as one.

Jimmie Foxx finished his 20-year, 2317-game career with 534 home runs, 1922 runs batted in, and a .325 batting average. He won a total of three MVP awards. His 12 consecutive seasons with 30 or more home runs was a major league record broken by Barry Bonds in 2004. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1951 by the BBWAA along with fellow-slugger Mel Ott. Foxx chose to wear a Boston Red Sox cap on his plaque - even though he is most identified with the Philadelphia Athletics. Neither Foxx nor Ott (same as Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig lived to reach their 60th birthdays. At the end of his career, his 534 home runs placed him second only to Ruth on the all-time list, and first among right-handed hitters. He retained these positions until Willie Mays passed Foxx for 2nd place on the all-time HR list in 1966. He is one of 4 players with 500 home runs to begin and end his career for different teams in the same City. Foxx started with the Philadelphia Athletics and finished with the Phillies. Babe Ruth was Boston Red Sox and Boston Braves, Willie Mays New York Giants and New York Mets, and Hank Aaron was Milwaukee Braves and Milwaukee Brewers.

A series of bad investments left Foxx broke by 1958. He worked as a minor league manager and coach after his playing days ended, including managing the Fort Wayne Daisies of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. Tom Hanks' character Jimmy Dugan in the movie A League of Their Own was largely based on Foxx, but the producers took a number of liberties in creating the role.

Foxx died at age 59 in Miami, Florida. His death was origfinally believed to be from a heart attack, but the autopsy showed that he died of asphixiation - he choked on a piece of meat. He is buried at Flagler Memorial Park in Miami, Florida. A statue of Foxx was erected in his hometown on October 25, 1997.

In 1999, he ranked number 15 on The Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players, and was a nominee for the Major League Baseball All-Century Team.

On September 21, 2006, David Ortiz hit home runs #51 and #52, passing Foxx for most home runs in a single season by a Red Sox hitter. David Ortiz finished with 54 home runs in 2006.

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit

Preceded by:
Babe Ruth & Lou Gehrig
American League Home Run Champion
1932-1933
Succeeded by:
Lou Gehrig
Preceded by:
Lou Gehrig
American League RBI Champion
1932-1933
Succeeded by:
Lou Gehrig
Preceded by:
Lefty Grove
American League Most Valuable Player
1932, 1933
Succeeded by:
Mickey Cochrane
Preceded by:
Ty Cobb
American League Triple Crown
1933
Succeeded by:
Lou Gehrig
Preceded by:
Dale Alexander
American League Batting Champion
1933
Succeeded by:
Lou Gehrig
Preceded by:
Lou Gehrig
American League Home Run Champion
1935
(with Hank Greenberg)
Succeeded by:
Lou Gehrig
Preceded by:
Charlie Gehringer
American League Most Valuable Player
1938
Succeeded by:
Joe DiMaggio
Preceded by:
Charlie Gehringer
American League Batting Champion
1938
Succeeded by:
Joe DiMaggio
Preceded by:
Hank Greenberg
American League RBI Champion
1938
Succeeded by:
Ted Williams
Preceded by:
Hank Greenberg
American League Home Run Champion
1939
Succeeded by:
Hank Greenberg


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