1940 National League Debuts

Willie Mays played his first Major League game on May 25, 1951, and went 0-for-5 at the plate. He started his career 1-for-25 and told his manager, "I can't do it, Mr. Leo. You better bench me."

Casey Stengel played his first Major League game on July 27, 1912, and went 4-for-4 at the plate. He commented later in his life, "I broke in with four hits and the writers promptly decided they had seen the new Ty Cobb. It took me only a few days to correct that impression."

Both Mays and Stengel would continue their Major League careers down separate paths of greatness, but each still had to appear in that memorable first Major League game. Baseball Almanac is pleased to present what Cubs broadcaster Steve Stone once described as, "His first Major League debut."

"Baseball is the sport that cackles back at can't-miss kids. Baseball humbles every player sooner or later. Baseball confers greatness stingily, in its own sweet time. At least that's what the bow-tied essayists and sandlot scouts solemnly tell us." - Johnette Howard in Sports Illustrated
1940 National League Debuts

1940 N.L. Rookies | 1940 A.L. Rookies | Baseball Firsts (All Years)

18
09-11-1940
29
30
09-13-1940
21
34
04-23-1940
21
12
09-22-1940
21
27, 31
04-16-1940
20
17
09-22-1940
25
28
05-07-1940
26
14
09-17-1940
25
25
04-23-1940
25
31
09-08-1940
28
5, 30
07-15-1940
23
20
08-08-1940
26
1, 34
04-16-1940
20
23
07-27-1940
22
18
09-17-1940
23
1
04-23-1940
21
34
07-23-1940
21
39
04-28-1940
30
21
04-28-1940
23
28
04-16-1940
20
6
05-04-1940
29
22
07-13-1940
25
19
09-03-1940
31
40
04-26-1940
24
20
04-16-1940
22
22
09-12-1940
22
26
09-17-1940
27
26
04-16-1940
23
23
06-26-1940
27
9
09-15-1940
24
6
04-16-1940
24
20
04-16-1940
22
6
09-06-1940
18
17
07-28-1940
27
22, 8
04-26-1940
22
7
09-13-1940
23
8
04-16-1940
23
28, 4
04-25-1940
23
4
04-30-1940
26
18
09-15-1940
22
27
09-15-1940
24
25
06-22-1940
23
22
09-15-1940
20
10
04-16-1940
27
16
04-26-1940
26
25
09-08-1940
22
24
09-06-1940
24
-
04-26-1940
28
38
06-09-1940
22
-
09-25-1940
22
31
04-22-1940
25
17
09-25-1940
25
28
09-22-1940
22
19
04-16-1940
28
4
04-16-1940
23
42
09-25-1940
23
2, 32
05-09-1940
23
1940 National League Debuts


Find out which players bid farewell to their field's of dreams in the National League during the 1940 season as this group of players made their Major League debut!

Ray Jansen (four for five in his first game), Aubrey Epps (three for four in his first game) and Ed Irwin (two for three in his first game) all finished their career with lifetime batting averages which were greater than their career fielding percentages.

Did you know that on September 27, 1963 the Houston Colt .45s fielded an all-rookie lineup that included future stars Joe Morgan , Jerry Grote , and Rusty Staub ?

Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac3h
Larry Chappell: 1-of-8 #MLB players to die while serving in the armed forces during World War I. List, why Comiskey… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac18 Feb
Mad 😉 at McFarland (@McFarlandBooks) for sending us Sixty-One in '61 (amazon.com/exec/obidos/as…) on Valentine's Day.… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac18 Feb
#TUESDAYTRIVIA: Dave Winfield went from University of Minnesota to #SanDiego #Padres, without playing MiLB! He was… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac18 Feb
Sign stealing history; including the use of buzzers, binoculars, scoreboard spies, television cameras, even the App… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac18 Feb
RIP Dick Scott (😥). LHP with #Dodgers (1963) and #Cubs (1964). DYK he was the first Traip Academy (@TraipAcademy) g… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac18 Feb
A very important graph: ┃ ⚾️ Mood ┃ ╱ Level ┃… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac16 Feb
OTD1924 Tony Boeckel died in a car crash. The first #MLB player killed in an automobile accident. The newspaper sto… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac16 Feb
RIP Tony Fernández 😥. An AMAZING 17-year career, 5x All-Star, 4x Gold Glove winner, a cycle, a World Series ring, s… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac15 Feb
February 15 is National Wisconsin Day, birthplace to 245 #MLB players, seventeen All-Stars, and four Hall of Fame p… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac14 Feb
Happy Valentine's Day baseball fans. There are 55 ballplayers who were born OTD, 6 all-stars. 24 passed away on Feb… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac13 Feb
Baseball Almanac Player of the Day. Catfish Hunter. How did he get that nickname? DYK he was the youngest pitcher t… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac13 Feb
Matt Antonelli, 2008 #Padres, retired from game (MiLB) in 2013. Today, found Antonelli Baseball, his EXCELLENT YouT… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac13 Feb
@SCPPJM Good morning Shawn, send me an email please and I'll get you (your son) a data dump to help you with his project. ❤️⚾️
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac12 Feb
Baseball Almanac Player of the Day. Dom DiMaggio. Born OTD1917, The Little Professor had a 34-game hitting streak i… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac12 Feb
OTD2016: #NewYork #Mets RHP Jenrry Mejia received a permanent suspension from #MLB and #MiLB after testing positive… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac11 Feb
#TuesdayTrivia - this #HOF player died OTD1950. He hit .354 in 1924, .357 in 1925, .360 in 1929, and .355 in 1930 -… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac11 Feb
OTD2002: #MLB owners approved the sale of the #FloridaMarlins & #MontrealExpos. John Henry sold #Marlins to Jeffre… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac11 Feb
#TuesdayTrivia: Born OTD1944, he is "The Original Padre" -- the very first #Padres player ever drafted. He went on… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac11 Feb
#TuesdayTrivia: Born OTD1949 (in #Panama), he was the first #Milwaukee #Brewers LEFTY to hit 40+ home runs in a sin… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Desktop Version