Fun facts about Elvio Jimenez:
-Hailing from San Pedro de Macoris in the Dominican Republic, Elvio signed with the Yankees as a teenager in 1959.
-He climbed sure and steady through the New York organization, hitting .296 or better in each of his first seven pro seasons.
-The Yanks gave Elvio a brief look in 1964 - very brief. His first and only major league game was October 4, 1964. He singled twice against a great pair of pitchers, Luis Tiant and Tommy John. He finished his career with a .333 batting average in six at-bats.
-He continued playing in the minors for seven years after his lone big league game, and logged nine years in AAA in total. He was a .307 hitter in the minor leagues.
-Jimenez also played in the Dominican for Tigres de Licey from 1958-1976, and still coaches for the club.
-His nickname was "Mulito".
-His brother Manny Jimenez was an outfielder who hit .272 in parts of seven seasons with the Athletics, Pirates, and Cubs.
Fun facts about Jake Gibbs:
-Born in Grenada, MS, Jake signed with the Yankees in 1961 after playing collegiately at the University of Mississippi.
-He was also an All-American as Ole Miss' quarterback, and was later inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. He chose a career in baseball despite being drafted by the AFL's Houston Oilers and the NFL's Cleveland Browns. I'm sure a $105,000 bonus didn't hurt.
-Jake was sent straight to AAA Richmond, and spent the better part of four seasons there.
-He had cups of coffee with New York in 1962, 1963, and 1964 before arriving for good in mid-1965.
-After backing up Elston Howard for a few years, Gibbs took over as the primary catcher for the Yanks in 1967. Even by the offense-deficient standards of the late-1960s, he was subpar with the bat, hitting .222 and slugging .282 during his three years in the starting lineup.
-The emergence of Thurman Munson in 1970 pushed Jake back into a reserve role, but he responded by hitting a career-high .301 with eight home runs in 153 at-bats.
-On August 14, 1970, his home run in the bottom of the tenth won the game for the Yankees, 3-2 over the Royals.
-A .218 average in 1971 brought his career to a close at age 32. In parts of ten seasons he hit .233 with 25 homers and 146 RBI.
-He returned to Ole Miss as head coach in 1972 and his team won the SEC Championship and set a conference record for consecutive wins. He stayed for 19 seasons and a handful of his players went on to the major leagues, most notably lefty pitcher Jeff Fassero.
-Gibbs came back to the Yankee organization as the manager of the rookie-level Tampa minor league club in 1994 and 1995. He again made his mark right away, guiding the young Yankees to an 80-52 record and a Florida State League championship in his first season.