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Jim Bibby Autographs, Memorabilia & Collectibles

JIM BIBBY
Born: October 29, 1944 in Franklinton, North Carolina
Died: February 16, 2010 in Lynchburg, Virginia
Player Career
Bat: Right Throw: Right Height: 6' 5" Weight: 235
First Game: September 4, 1972 ; Final Game: May 26, 1984
Awards and Achievements
Named right-handed pitcher on The Sporting News NL All-Star Team (1980)
Biography | show moreshow less
Jim Bibby
This article was written by Rory Costello and is presented in part, courtesy of the Society for American Baseball Research
Everything about Jim Bibby was big. His frame: 6'5" and 235 pounds, with "legs like oak trees."[1] His hands: he could fit eight baseballs in his right hand – palm down – one more even than Sandy Koufax and Johnny Bench.[2] His fastball: "vicious. . .serious heat. . . would scare the bejesus out of most batters."[3] His appetite: as his older brother Fred said, "Jim's the only guy I've ever known who has to have two plates in front of him. One for meat, one for greens."[4] And most of all, his heart – so many fond memories flowed in after he died in 2010.

The burly righthander didn't make it to the majors until he was nearly 28. He was wild, and it took him time and effort to harness his ability. His development was also delayed because he missed three full seasons in the minors – two in Vietnam and one after a back operation. Yet eventually he won 111 games as a big-leaguer (against 101 losses). He was an important part of the staff for the World Series champions of 1979, the Pittsburgh Pirates "Fam-a-lee." He followed up with his career year in 1980, at the age of 35.

After his big-league career ended in 1984, Bibby spent 16 years as a minor-league pitching coach – 15 of them in Lynchburg, Virginia, the area where he lived much of his life. He also pitched in the Senior Professional Baseball Association in 1990. Upon his death, the Lynchburg Hillcats issued a statement saying, "Bibby was a foundation for baseball in the Lynchburg area, an institution in the Carolina League and his #26 is the only retired number in Lynchburg baseball history. Anyone who knew Bibby would tell you, you could not find a more jovial soul."[5]

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