February 17, 1953 |
|April 8, 1975, for the Texas Rangers|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 28, 1978, for the Texas Rangers|
James Harold Umbarger (born February 17, 1953) is a former American professional baseball player. A left-handed pitcher at Grant High School in Van Nuys, California, Umbarger was the 33rd pick in the 1971 Major League draft by the Cleveland Indians, but opted to attend Arizona State University. In 1974, The Sporting news named Umbarger as honorable mention on the All-America team. Umbarger was selected in the 16th round of the 1974 Major League Baseball Draft by the Texas Rangers.
Umbarger made his major league debut in April, 1975, with the Rangers, and had a successful rookie season for the team, going 8–7 in 56 games (12 of them starts, with 2 shutouts), with a 4.12 ERA. The following season, Umbarger started 30 games for the Rangers, going 10–12 (with 3 shutouts) with a 3.15 ERA.
Prior to the 1977 season, Umbarger was traded to the Oakland Athletics, along with Rodney Scott, for outfielder Claudell Washington. Umbarger was sold back to the Rangers August 24, 1977. Umbarger finished the 1977 season with the Rangers and returned for the 1978 campaign, appearing in 32 games and posting a 4.88 ERA. The 1978 season would be Umbarger's last in the major leagues. While in the minor leagues in 1981, he pitched 10 scoreless innings (23rd-32nd) in relief in the longest professional baseball game. Of note, during his pitching wind up, Jim Umbarger's hat often would fly off.
- Career statistics and player information from Baseball-Reference, or The Baseball Cube, or Baseball-Reference (Minors), or Retrosheet, or Pura Pelota (Venezuelan Winter League)
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