Santa Paula Times

Santa Paula native Jim Colborn joins Dodgers as pitching coach

December 01, 2000
Santa Paula News

Jim Colborn was named the Los Angeles Dodgers new pitching coach on Nov. 21, capping his long career both on the field and behind the scenes.

By Peggy KellySanta Paula TimesWhen they yell “Play ball!” at Dodgers’ games, the new pitching coach - a native Santa Paulan - will be sure to be there.Jim Colborn was named the Los Angeles Dodgers new pitching coach on Nov. 21, capping his long career both on the field and behind the scenes.A top athlete at Santa Paula High School, Colborn has served as the director of Pacific Rim scouting for the Seattle Mariners for the past four years and was instrumental in signing two top Japanese players.A three star athlete at SPHS - football, baseball and basketball - Colborn, a resident of Ventura, pitched 10 years in the majors with the Chicago Cubs, Milwaukee, Kansas City and Seattle. He was selected to the American League All-Star team in 1973; two years later he pitched a no-hitter for the Royals.He retired as an active player in 1979, but remained a star in coaching circles, starting his career with the Chicago Cubs. He has also managed single-A and A baseball teams.
“I’m just so proud of him, so thrilled,” said his mother, Carolyn Colborn, a resident of Santa Paula. “We will be ardent fans of the Dodgers next season,” she added with a laugh. “It’s the ultimate of his career and exciting for the whole family. He always loved to play ball, from the time he was about six years old.”The Santa Paula Rotary Club sponsored his nomination as a Rotary Foundation Fellowship for graduate studies at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland 1968-69. He graduated from Santa Paula High School in 1963, serving as Student Body President. He graduated from Whittier College four years later and did advance studies at the universities of Copenhagen, Denmark, Washington and Edinburgh.Colborn, honored in the Whittier College and Ventura County Sports Halls of Fame, was featured as a third base coach in Kevin Costner’s baseball film, “For the Love of the Game.”When Colborn addressed the Rotary Club in November 1999, he noted “Whatever I’ve done, it’s all grounded with my identity of Santa Paula. . .it will always be my home. A lot of people supported me while I was growing up and they’re still here.”He also told of his days as a rookie player under the legendary hot-tempered Leo Durocher. Colborn said he was urged to speak his mind during a team meeting, but the veteran players, familiar with Durocher’s volatility, kept quiet. Colborn, “Being from Santa Paula and thinking I could conquer the world,” gave his opinion.“You’re like a viper,” Colborn told Durocher. “And Leo laughed and laughed. . . and sent me to the minor leagues!”