Jim Rivera

This young Puerto Rican outfielder from the Bronx captured the imagination of White Sox fans with his daring basepath antics and belly-slides. In 1955 he swiped a league-high 25 bases. In Game Five of the 1959 WS, Rivera’s catch with his back to the infield of Charley Neal’s long drive preserved a 1-0 Sox victory in front of over 90,000 screaming Dodger fans. And Jungle Jim was a character. To former First Lady Bess Truman, in attendance at an A’s game, Rivera said: “I’m sure sorry my homer beat your team, but it was a helluva wallop, eh, Bess?” To President Kennedy, on Opening Day 1961, when Rivera asked for an autograph: “What’s this? This is just a scribble! I can hardly make it out! You’ll have to do better than this, John.”