José Isabel Jiménez
José Isabel Jiménez
Chabelo Jiménez was the premier baseball journalist in Mexico for over five decades. Jiménez was still active in reporting baseball news not just in Mexico but in the entire world until he passed away at the age of 98.
Jiménez began his career covering games out of Monterrey. Later he expanded his coverage to the Mexican League, the Texas League, and the Inter-American League. His books Mecanismo de una crónica de beisbol ("How to Write about Baseball'") and Oración del Beisbolista ("The Church of Baseball") cemented his place among journalists.
Jiménez covered four championship teams in Monterrey. He has also been a working journalist for 54 consecutive seasons. In 2006, he was elected to the Salon de la Fama, Mexico's Baseball Hall of Fame. he was a member of the Salon de la Fama's electoral committee from the time of its establishment and served as its chairman.
In his later years, he was considered a "living legend" of professional baseball in Mexico. He played baseball in his younger years, then started his career as an announcer in Fresnillo, Zacatecas before earning a degree in broadcasting in Mexico City. In 1956, he moved to Monterrey where he became the official announcer for the Sultanes de Monterrey. He was also a print journalist for 53 years, from 1954 until 2006. During his tenure as a broadcaster, the Sultanes won four championships, and he also got to broadcast five LMB All-Star games; he had 35 different broadcast partners during his tenure. In additional to professional contests, he also broadcast Little League and Pony league games, and the Little League World Series in Williamsport, PA. he was behind the microphone for both the first and last home run ever hit by Mexican legend Hector Espino, and for the longest game in Mexican League history, a 21-inning marathon between Monterrey and Saltillo. At the time of his death, he was the dean of Mexican baseball journalists, having worked in print, radio and television.
In his 90's, he was still a regular participant in the a weekly one-hour radio show entitled "Hablemos de Béisbol" (Let's talk baseball). For 26 years, he wrote a a baseball column in "La Afición" newspaper.
He was also a working umpire for 35 years, working a total of 70 seasons between the Mexican summer and winter leagues. He was an umpire in professional leagues, but also for amateur and Little League contests.