Jim McDonald (minors02)

From BR Bullpen


James Earl McDonald

BR minors page

Biographical Information[edit]

Jim McDonald was a first-round draft pick who spent four seasons in AAA but never made the majors.

McDonald was taken by the New York Yankees with the 19th pick of the 1975 amateur draft. He made his pro debut with the Oneonta Yankees, batting .284/.349/.372. He led the New York-Penn League with 69 games played and led the league's first basemen in putouts (683) and double plays (53); he was .001 shy of leading in fielding percentage. He was also 6th in the league in batting average. He lost All-Star honors at 1B to Vaughn Robbins, whose only real edge was in OBP. In 1976, Jim hit only .232/.318/.333 for the Fort Lauderdale Yankees. He turned 114 double plays, the most of any first baseman in the Florida State League. The next season, McDonald put up a .242/.299/.358 line for Fort Lauderdale, while his 12 sacrifice flies led the league. His playing time at 1B went down a bit as he alternated occasionally with DH Willie Upshaw.

The California native had one of his best seasons with the 1978 West Haven Yankees, hitting .281/.333/.458 with 18 home runs and 82 RBI. He was fourth in the Eastern League in dingers, only 3 behind leader Jeff Yurak and one behind Joe Lefebvre and Richie Scheinblum. He also was 4th in RBI and led EL first basemen in fielding percentage (.990). He was named the league's All-Star first bagger. He only hit .185/.263/.215 in limited time with West Haven the next year, as Buck Showalter took over first base.

In 1980, Jim hit .262/.327/.352 for the Columbus Clippers, playing mostly DH with Marshall Brant manning first. He then spent a summer in Mexico with the Veracruz Eagle, batting .303/.380/.405. Returning to the US in 1982 as a member of the Houston Astros chain, he appeared in 47 games for the Columbus Astros (.270/.326/.356) and 59 for the Tucson Toros (.286/.317/.439). He ended his career back in Mexico in 1983, batting .300/.360/.456 for Veracruz.