- C, DH, LF, OF
- May 18, 1951
- 190 lbs
- Major League Debut:
- 4-04-1974 with TEX
- Allstar Selections:
- 1976 GG, 1977 GG, 1978 GG, 1979 GG, 1980 GG, 1981 GG
Quotes From Jim Sundberg
"I'm sure there are fans, good baseball fans, too, over in the National League who still never have heard of Jim Sundberg." — Sundberg in 1978
Where does Jim Sundberg rank among baseball greats?
Jim Sundberg ranks among the Top 50 all-time at C. Rankings ?
Best Season: 1977
There's no indication that he changed his batting stance in mid-season, or that he had an injury in the first-half of the year, but Sundberg suddenly started hitting in July. He batted .383 with 39 RBI in July and August. He finished with career-high marks in batting, HR and RBI, and won the Gold Glove Award.
James Howard Sundberg was born on May 18, 1951, in Galesburg, IL.
Major League Debut
According to TSN, teammates called Sundberg "Sunny Boone" (as in Pat Boone) because of his squeeky-clean image. Ditto "Sunny Garvey" after Steve Garvey.
1985 American League Championship Series
1985 World Series
Awards and Honors
1976 AL Gold Glove
1977 AL Gold Glove
1978 AL Gold Glove
1979 AL Gold Glove
1980 AL Gold Glove
1981 AL Gold Glove
Sundberg was a notoriously streaky hitter, with a few exceptions. For example, through June in 1977, Sundberg was hitting .217 with one home run and 19 RBI. He hit a blistering .397 with a .482 OBP in July, .374 with 26 RBI in August, and .258 in September, having caught 149 games. His final batting marks stood at .291 with six homers and 65 RBI, all career-highs. Then, showing it was no-fluke, he batted .324 through the first three months of 1978. He tailed off, tiring under the strain of more than 140 games behind the plate, and hit .278 for the season. The following year, in 1979, he reversed the trend, getting off to a dismal start (.218 through June), and finishing fast: batting .356 in July, .294 in August, and .338 in September. In 1980, he had his most consistent season, batting .290 or better in four months, but he hit an abysmal .152 in June... In 1976, he was hitting .185 in the first two months of the season, but his defense kept him behind the plate and he eventually hit .228 for the year... He also tired under the wear-and-tear of his workload behind the mask. In 1975, when he hit .199 for the season, he batted .180 from July 1 until the end of the season.
22 games (1978)
17 games (1981)
Ken Suarez and Dick Billings, the platoon combination the Rangers used in 1973.
His last starting job was with the Royals in 1986. In '87 he was traded to the Cubs. Would you believe the Royals replaced him with veteran role player Jamie Quirk?
Best Strength as a Player
Handling the Tools of Ignorance.
Largest Weakness as a Player
Streakiness at the plate.