Jim Frey

From BR Bullpen


James Gottfried Frey

BR Manager page

Biographical Information[edit]

Jim Frey was a minor league player and then a manager in the big leagues for six seasons, followed by a number of seasons as a baseball executive.

He began his playing career in 1950, leading the Paducah Chiefs with a .325 batting average that year. On July 4, 1956, Frey was traded by the Milwaukee Braves to the Brooklyn Dodgers for Ray Shearer. In 1957, he hit .336 with 11 triples and 74 RBI for the Tulsa Oilers en route to being named the Texas League MVP. He ended his 14 year playing career in 1963. Frey won batting titles in 1957 (.336 in Texas League) and 1960 (.317 in International League).

Frey spent 1964 and 1965 as skipper of the Bluefield Orioles and 1966 to 1969 as a Baltimore Orioles scout before serving as a Oriole coach under Earl Weaver from 1970 to 1979. In 1980, he became manager of the Kansas City Royals and led the team to their first World Series appearance that first year, losing in 6 games to the Philadelphia Phillies. However, the club struggled in 1981, going 30-40 under Frey, and he was replaced by Dick Howser. At the time, he was criticized for his lack of strategic acumen, which was exemplified by his work in the 1981 All-Star Game: he used all his substitutes early in the game, and was forced to let P Dave Stieb bat in the 9th inning with the game on the line when he had run out of potential pinch-hitters.

He was a member of the New York Mets coaching staff in 1982 and 1983 before becoming skipper of the Chicago Cubs from 1984 to 1986. In his first season with the Cubs, he led the team to their first postseason appearance since 1945, but they blew a two-game-to-none lead in the NLCS against the San Diego Padres and failed to advance to the World Series. He returned to the club as General Manager in late 1987 and held that post until 1991, being part of the next Cubs post-season team, in 1989.

After leaving the major leagues, he worked to set up the Somerset Patriots of the independent Atlantic League and remained associated with the team until his passing in 2020 at 88.

Notable Achievements[edit]

Preceded by
Whitey Herzog
Kansas City Royals Manager
Succeeded by
Dick Howser
Preceded by
Charlie Fox
Chicago Cubs Manager
Succeeded by
Gene Michael
Preceded by
Dallas Green
Chicago Cubs General Manager
Succeeded by
Larry Himes

Year-By-Year Managerial Record[edit]

Year Team League Record Finish Organization Playoffs Notes
1964 Bluefield Orioles Appalachian League 27-44 4th Baltimore Orioles
1965 Bluefield Orioles Appalachian League 31-38 5th Baltimore Orioles
1980 Kansas City Royals American League 97-65 1st Kansas City Royals Lost World Series
1981 Kansas City Royals American League 30-40 -- Kansas City Royals replaced by Dick Howser on August 31
1984 Chicago Cubs National League 96-65 1st Chicago Cubs Lost NLCS
1985 Chicago Cubs National League 77-84 4th Chicago Cubs
1986 Chicago Cubs National League 23-34 -- Chicago Cubs replaced by John Vukovich on June 13

Related Sites[edit]