Adopted at birth, Jim was only 9 years old when his adoptive father died. Shortly thereafter, his mother moved the family from New York to California. In 1960, she remarried and the family moved to Scottsdale, Arizona where he attended high school. At the age of 18, Jim signed a $50,000 bonus contract with the Orioles. Although offered a scholarship to play basketball at UCLA, Jim signed with the Orioles in 1963 as a free agent, a wise decision that was to bring him superstar status. His 21-year career as a pitcher is remarkable since he played only for the Baltimore Orioles and earned many club records, including most wins, completed games, strikeouts, walks and shutouts.
He has built a career as a broadcaster providing commentary to ABC, the cable networks ESPN and HTS, as well as local Baltimore stations. He has attained success broadcasting for ABC Sports and has been highly acclaimed by viewers. In 1994, ABC signed a multi-year deal with Jim to be the sportscaster for alternating World Series games, All-Star Games, Major League games as well as the Championship play-oft series. For more than a decade Jim was the ABC Wide World of Sports color analyst for the Little League World Series. In September 1997, Jim was hired to be the broadcaster for the first ever Major League Sporting Event filmed in digital format which aired live in Washington, D.C.
Jim Palmer has been representing Jockey International for almost twenty years. He was chosen for his credibility, positive image and dynamic appeal to new and existing customers. Jim personifies integrity, perseverance and excellence. He was the sports recipient of the American Image Award sponsored by the Male Apparel Industry and the Men's Fashion Association of America. He has also been a spokesperson for other products, given speeches for corporations, associations and charitable organizations, hosted and served as representative in a number of corporate settings. He has even had a movie role in the film "The Naked Gun". In addition, Jim has published two books, titled The Palmer Way To Fitness and Together We Were Eleven Foot Nine.
Jim has served for over two decades as a national sports chairman for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Jim was the commencement speaker for Carthage College and received an Honorary Doctorate of Education for his contributions to American culture and his dedication to the CF cause.
In October 1996-2001, he hosted his Sixth Celebrity Golf Tournament benefiting the CF Foundation. These tournaments alone raised a million dollars. Additionally, he has made public service announcements and assisted in a variety of charitable and community causes including D.A.R.E., Arthritis, Alzheimer's, Grant-A-Wish, Special Olympics, Baseball Assistance Team and local Recycling Programs. He participates in several Celebrity Golf Tournaments each year, which have included the prestigious Bob Hope Invitational and the Crosby. Tennis and racquetball, biking and skiing are other activities he enjoys. He relaxes by listening to music and reading books and sports publications.
Palmer and his wife, Susan, are the parents of a son with autism, and Palmer has embraced the cause, working to raise money for educational improvements benefiting autism research.
- Conversation on Autism
- Together We Were Eleven Foot Nine
In this speech, based on his book recounting his 20-year friendship with Orioles manager Earl Weaver, Jim Palmer shares the idea that ultimately teamwork and the mutual will to win are the keys to success on and off the field.
- Consistent Winning for the Long Run
- The Pursuit of Excellence