Jimmie "Double X" Foxx
James “Jimmie” Emory Foxx was born in 1907 in Sudlersville, Maryland. His parents were tenant farmers, and his father, Dell Foxx, introduced him to baseball at a young age. Foxx did well in school and excelled in athletic activities, including baseball, soccer, and track.
In 1924, Foxx’s talents with his high school baseball team caught the attention of Frank “Home Run” Baker, who signed him to play for the Easton Farmers. Foxx played for Easton through the summer, and by the end of July, his contract was purchased by the Philadelphia Athletics.
In 1925, Foxx left high school his senior year to attend spring training with the Athletics as the youngest player in the major leagues. He hit 10 home runs in his first professional season and would go on to play professionally for 20 years. Foxx earned the nickname “The Beast” due to his powerful swing and hard hitting. He hit 534 career home runs, second only to Babe Ruth. He was also named MVP a record three times.
Foxx’s career and personal life experienced a variety of highs and lows after he left major league baseball in 1945. He worked brief stints as a sports announcer, coach, and manager for several minor league teams, but struggled to find steady work outside of baseball.
Foxx was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1951, and in 1999, the Sporting News ranked Foxx number 15 of the 100 greatest baseball players. Jimmie Foxx died in Florida on March 21, 1967.
Baseball teams started touring Japan in 1907 in order to promote the sport. In November 1934, Jimmie Foxx toured Japan and played exhibition games alongside baseball legends Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig.
Fort Wayne Daisies
In 1952, Foxx became the manager of the Fort Wayne Daisies, a team in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. Foxx took the team to the playoffs, but they lost to the Rockford Peaches.
In the 1992 film A League of Their Own, the team’s manager, played by Tom Hanks, is loosely based on Jimmie Foxx. The team portrayed in the film is the Rockford Peaches.