Imagine being the youngest player in the entire league one year, then never playing in that league again. That is exactly what happened to former Chicago Cubs outfielder Jimmy McMath, who passed away on July 20th at age 60.
McMath was 19 years old when he made his big league debut on September 7, 1968, the youngest player in the major leagues by a single day (catcher Ted Simmons, who also made his debut that season, was just a day younger than him).
His stay in the big leagues was short, only six games, though he made the best of it—he collected hits in the first two games of his career and he drove in two runs, one of which helped lead the Cubs to victory over the New York Mets on September 10.
Despite his youth, those six games would be the only taste of the majors leagues McMath would ever have. He played in the minor leagues until 1971—at which point he was still only 21 years old.
Not many people have heard of Jimmy McMath, yet he holds a distinction few hold—for one year—rather, for one brief span in one mid-September—Jimmy McMath was the youngest ballplayer in the entire league.
Tags: Baseball, Chicago Cubs