Jim Deshaies

James Joseph Deshaies (born June 23, 1960), also known as "JD", is an American former professional baseball left-handed starting pitcher, who played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for six teams, over the course of 12 big league seasons. He is currently a color commentator for broadcasts of Chicago Cubs games.[1]

Jim Deshaies
Deshaies at Wrigley Field in 2013
Born: (1960-06-23) June 23, 1960
Massena, New York, U.S.
Batted: Left
Threw: Left
MLB debut
August 7, 1984, for the New York Yankees
Last MLB appearance
July 30, 1995, for the Philadelphia Phillies
MLB statistics
Win–loss record84–95
Earned run average4.14

Playing career

Deshaies made his MLB debut with the New York Yankees on August 7, 1984.[1] In so doing he became the 1,000th person to play an official game for the Yankees. Deshaies was the losing pitcher that day, after giving up four earned runs in four innings pitched in a 6–3 loss to the Chicago White Sox.[2] Six days later, he lasted three innings in a no decision start against the Cleveland Indians.[2] Those were Deshaies' only appearances for the Yankees, who traded him to the Houston Astros on September 15, 1985, for Joe Niekro.[1]

Deshaies' first full season was with the Astros in 1986, during which he posted 12 wins, an Astros' rookie record, later broken by Roy Oswalt in 2001.

In a September 23, 1986, game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Deshaies set a Major League record by striking out the first eight batters of the game.[3] This feat was equaled by Jacob deGrom on September 14, 2014, and Germán Márquez on September 26, 2018. The record was later broken by Pablo López of the Miami Marlins on July 11, 2021.[4] Cristian Javier matched a variation of Deshaies' club record on April 22, 2021, by securing the first eight outs of a game via strikeout,[5] while Justin Verlander tied Deshaies' club record for consecutive strikeouts at any point in a game on October 4, 2022.[6]

Deshaies was a mainstay on the Astros' rotation from 1986 to 1991, pitching in 25 or more starts in each of those seasons. His best season was 1989, when he posted a 15–10 record, with a 2.91 earned run average (ERA), and 153 strikeouts. On May 2 that year, Mike Schmidt hit his 548th and final home run off Deshaies.

Deshaies holds the major league record for most at-bats without an extra base hit, with 373.[7][1]

In 1992, Deshaies joined the San Diego Padres, and later played for the Minnesota Twins (twice), San Francisco Giants, and Philadelphia Phillies. Deshaies retired following his release by the Phillies, on July 31, 1995.[1]

Chris Berman of ESPN referred to Deshaies as, "Jim 'Two Silhouettes on' Deshaies", playing on lyrics of the song, "Silhouettes".

Broadcasting career

Deshaies interviewing Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville before a Cubs pregame celebration for the 2013 Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks at Wrigley Field

Deshaies was a commentator for Astros' TV broadcasts from 1997 to 2012, along with Bill Brown. Deshaies gained respect as an analyst and enjoyed very high popularity with Astros fans during his tenure. He is the co-host of the "J.D. and Dave's Excellent Offseason Adventure" in the offseason and occasionally serves as an analyst for Fox Major League Baseball.

Deshaies moved to the Chicago Cubs' TV broadcast for the 2013–16 seasons.[8] On January 10, 2017, the Cubs announced extensions for both Deshaies and play-by-play man Len Kasper through 2019.[9]

In 2001, Deshaies ran a tongue-in-cheek campaign urging Baseball Writers' Association of America voters to elect him to the Hall of Fame, knowing full well he would not qualify for the honor. Deshaies‘ goal of receiving one vote in the Hall of Fame election was achieved[10] when Houston Chronicle writer John Lopez voted for him.[11]

Deshaies remains the Cubs color commentator following the departure of Len Kasper in December 2020.[12]


  1. "Jim Deshaies Stats". Baseball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. 2019. Retrieved December 29, 2019.
  2. "Jim Deshaies 1984 Pitching Game Logs". Baseball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. 2019. Retrieved December 29, 2019.
  3. McTaggart, Brian (September 23, 2015). "Looking back at Deshaies' historic pitching performance". MLB.com. Major League Baseball. Retrieved August 1, 2019.
  4. "Marlins' López fans first 9, sets MLB record". MLB.com. Major League Baseball. July 11, 2021. Retrieved July 11, 2021.
  5. @MLBStats (April 23, 2021). "Cristian Javier is the first @astros pitcher to record the first 8 outs of a game via strikeout since 1986 (Jim Des…" (Tweet) via Twitter.
  6. "Verlander, bullpen keep Phils hitless until 9th in 10–0 win". ESPN.com. October 4, 2022. Retrieved October 5, 2022.
  7. Kurkjian, Tim (April 5, 1993). "No Hitters | Vault". SI.com. Sports Illustrated. Retrieved January 4, 2020.
  8. Footer, Alyson (December 3, 2012). "Deshaies takes position as Cubs' TV color analyst". MLB.com. Major League Baseball. Retrieved December 29, 2019.
  9. Muskat, Carrie (January 10, 2017). "Cubs extend contracts for Kasper, Deshaies". MLB.com. Major League Baseball. Retrieved December 29, 2019.
  10. "2001 Hall of Fame Voting". Baseball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. 2020. Retrieved January 4, 2020.
  11. Antonen, Mel (January 5, 2012). "For some Hall of Fame candidates, one vote is all that matters". SI.com. Sports Illustrated. Retrieved January 4, 2020.
  12. Wennmacher, Mike (December 4, 2020). "Len Kasper Leaves The Chicago Cubs To Join The Chicago White Sox". WMAY. Retrieved December 7, 2020.
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