Posted: Friday, December 27, 2002
Former Bucs players born on this date include Jim Tobin, who pitched for the Pirates from 1937-1939. He made his debut as a 24 year old on April 30, 1937 during a 7-2 loss Vs the Cubs. That team would start the season 14-3, but finish in 3rd place. Tobin would go 6-3 3.00 over 20 games and he started 8 games, finishing 7.
In 1938, Tobin would finish second on the team in wins with 14 and the team would finish in 2nd place on the season, just 2 games behind the Cubs. He went 14-12 3.47 total and also hit .243 in 103 at-bats. He also led the team with 14 complete games and threw 2 shutouts. After a 9-9 4.52 season in 1939 Tobin was traded to the Boston Braves (known as the Bees then) for pitcher Johnny Lanning.
Tobin was an All-Star in 1944 and over his 9 year career he hit 17 home runs. He also twice led the NL in complete games. His brother Johnny Tobin played for the 1945 Red Sox. Jim went by the nickname "Abba Dabba" during his career and he was born in 1912.
Craig Reynolds, born on this date in 1952, played for the Pirates from 1975-76. He made his ML debut on Aug 1st, 1975 and he ended up playing 31 games that year with 30 of them coming at shortstop. He hit .224 total and drove in 4 runs while scoring 8 runs. He also got into 2 postseason games that year in the NLCS Vs. the Dodgers, batting just once with no hits. In 1976, Craig got into just 7 games for the Pirates and batted only 4 times, but he did hit his first ML home run. The next year he would play for the expansion Seattle Mariners during their inaugural season.
Bill Bishop, born in 1869, pitched for the first Pirates team in 1887 as a 17 year old. He was a member of the Pittsburgh American Association team in 1886 before they moved to the National League. He stuck with the team in their jump to the NL. Bill would pitch just 3 games for the 1887 team and he would struggle. Despite throwing 3 complete games, he went 0-3 13.33. He gave up 45 hits in 27 innings with 22 walks while striking out just 4.
That one season would be Bishop's only season for the Pirates (then the Alleghenys) and he would pitch just one year after that finishing his career at the age of 19 with the Cubs in 1889. Despite pitching just 2 games, he lead the NL in saves that year with 2, but also had an ERA of 18.00! He went 0-4 9.96 total during his 3 partial seasons, although it totaled just 7 games. Bill proved it wasn't just his pitching that wasn't good by going 1-17 at-bat and making 5 errors.
William "Ducky" Hemp, born in 1867, played briefly for the Pirates in 1890 (still known as the Alleghenys that season). A center fielder, he played 21 games for the worst Pittsburgh baseball team ever, when they went 23-113 that year. Ducky hit .235 with 4 RBI's before moving on to the Syracuse Stars of the American Association where he finished the season and his career.
Finally, born on this date in 1870 was Bill Farmer who played 2 games for the Bucs in 1888. As a 17 year old he played 1 game at catcher and 1 game in right field. Farmer batted just 4 times with no hits and a strikeout before moving on to the Philadelphia A's of the American Association where he played just 3 games in what would be his only other ML experience. He made his ML debut May 1st.