1971 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."

"There is a certain amount of fascination to the big league debut of any athlete. Sometimes they are incredible successes. Sometimes they are frenetic failures." - Sportswriter Arthur Daley
1971 National League Debuts

1971 N.L. Rookies | 1971 A.L. Rookies | Baseball Firsts (All Years)

14
07-09-1971
20
39
06-23-1971
24
33
04-07-1971
22
19
09-06-1971
24
25
04-07-1971
26
16
08-20-1971
22
44
06-17-1971
21
45
05-16-1971
25
25
09-03-1971
23
37
04-07-1971
23
42
09-17-1971
27
48
05-16-1971
21
16
07-24-1971
22
29
04-20-1971
21
44
07-19-1971
21
50
09-05-1971
21
17
06-18-1971
21
19
09-14-1971
20
31
09-15-1971
21
48
06-26-1971
20
10
09-03-1971
23
50
04-11-1971
21
20
07-02-1971
23
22
09-05-1971
22
21
04-11-1971
24
37
06-23-1971
27
38
09-15-1971
23
5
09-14-1971
23
32
07-11-1971
21
28
09-15-1971
21
31
09-15-1971
24
35
04-23-1971
23
40
09-02-1971
20
29
09-03-1971
23
25
07-04-1971
21
48
09-11-1971
22
6
07-10-1971
20
10
09-25-1971
21
10, 22
09-08-1971
22
23
09-04-1971
22
29
09-04-1971
18
11
04-17-1971
22
28
09-04-1971
19
31
09-07-1971
23
33
07-31-1971
23
37
09-05-1971
24
45
07-30-1971
22
8
09-05-1971
22
43
04-08-1971
25
35
04-07-1971
20
33
04-08-1971
23
19
09-05-1971
22
43
06-01-1971
20
1971 National League Debuts


Find out which players bid farewell to their field's of dreams in the National League during the 1971 season as this group of players made their Major League debut!

On April 13, 1954, Hank Aaron made his Major League debut and went 0-for-5. However, in his own autobiography Aaron wrote that he went 0-for-4.

On the final day of the 1930 season, Dizzy Dean was called up and pitched a three-hitter. In Spring Training the following year, Dean had a fight with catcher Gabby Street and the franchise left him in the Minor Leagues all season long.

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