Cleo James was born on Saturday, August 31, 1940, in Clarksdale, Mississippi. James was 27 years old when he broke into the big leagues on April 15, 1968, with the Los Angeles Dodgers. His biographical data, year-by-year hitting stats, fielding stats, pitching stats (where applicable), career totals, uniform numbers, salary data and miscellaneous items-of-interest are presented by Baseball Almanac on this comprehensive Cleo James baseball stats page.
"'He's my centerfielder,' Leo ( Durocher ) says of Cleo James. Now, instead of climbing the walls he has found a centerfielder who can do it . . . Jet James has made some spectacular catchers in the last 10 days, picking off several one-handers from the vine-covered wall of Wrigley Field. Tom Lasorda , who green-lighted James to 47 stoles bases last year—as Cleo pitched in with a .327 batting average—last winter called Cleo James the reason the Cubs lost the pennant last season. 'Because he was in Spokane, not Chicago,' Lasorda noted." - Staff Writer Harry Missildine in The Spokesman-Review (06/01/1970, The James Story - Retold , Page 14)
Cleo 'Jet' James Autograph on a 1972 Topps Baseball Card (#117 | Checklist )
Cleo James Pitching Stats
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Cleo James Hitting Stats
Cleo James Fielding Stats
Cleo James Miscellaneous Stats
|Baserunning Statistics||Other Positions||Common Hitting Ratios||Common Pitching Ratios|
Cleo James Miscellaneous Items of Interest
|Team [Click for Roster]||Uniform Numbers||Salary||All-Star||World Series|
|1968 Los Angeles Dodgers||30||$8,500.00||-||-|
|1970 Chicago Cubs||24||$13,000.00||-||-|
|1971 Chicago Cubs||24||$14,500.00||-||-|
|1973 Chicago Cubs||24||$18,000.00||-||-|
|Cleo James Stats by Baseball Almanac|
Cleo Joel James was a Major League Baseball player with the Los Angeles Dodgers ( 1968 ) and Chicago Cubs ( 1970 - 1971 , 1973 ). When James made his big league debut on April 15, 1968 , he became the first Palm Springs High School graduate to play in the majors!
Did you know that Cleo James stole 344 bases in the minors? The Dodgers signed the speedster on August 10, 1961, and during his first season in the Florida State League, he stole 36 bases! Two years later, James was in the Northwest League where he stole a career high 64 bases with the 1964 Salem Dodgers!
The Statesman Journal (Al Lightner, Sportslightner, 08/27/1964, Page 15), wrote, "The exciting Cleo James is already the best base stealer in Salem baseball history, and likely will top the Northwest League record of 62 before he's through this season. And that's remarkable any way you look at it . . . But have a look at what three lads are doing with the Tidewater Tides of the Carolina League! One Ed Stroud has over 70 stole bases, Bud Bradford has nearly 60 and Joe Jones was fast approaching 50 just the other day . . . Be happy you aren't a pitcher or catcher playing against those three for a living . . .
LA gave James less than a dozen cups of coffee, due in part to that base running ability; two in the outfield, six pinch hitting appearances, and two pinch running opportunities. But, it was enough for the Cubs who drafted Cleo in the 1969 Rule 5 Draft.
On the back of Cleo James rookie card, the 1972 Topps (#117), it has, "What is Cleo's hobby?" The answer? Table tennis! Additional Trivia: Cleo was only the second major leaguer with the first name Cleo. Do you know who preceded James? [ Answer ]
Last-Modified: September 22, 2020 5:12 AM EST