Looking Back At Jermaine Allensworth’s MLB Career


Once considered one of baseball’s top prospects, the former first-round draft pick Jermaine Allensworth played four seasons of MLB baseball before attempting a minor league comeback in 2000 and then entering the Independent ranks in 2004.

Despite a relatively short professional career, Allensworth was cemented into 90’s pop culture when Tracy Morgan portrayed him on an episode of Saturday Night Live.



Jermaine Allensworth’s Career Stats

YearTeamAVGOBPSLGHRRBISB
1996PIT.262.337.38043111
1997PIT.255.340.33934314
1998PIT-KCR-NYM.272.344.38653115
1999NYM.219.310.370392
Source: Baseball Reference

Breaking Down Jermaine Allensworth’s Career

Baseball is one of the world’s toughest sports, so using cliche phrases like failed prospect and bust is both unfair and inaccurate. That is certainly true of Allensworth, whose career did not meet many scouts’ expectations but can hardly be deemed as a failure.


Let’s analyze his career year by year.


1996

Allensworth’s rookie campaign was solid but unspectacular for the highly touted prospect. While he achieved a respectable .717 OPS over 61 MLB games, it fell short of his dominant AAA performance, which included a .330 average and .403 on-base percentage.

The Pirates finished 5th in the NL Central at a record of 73-89, apparently projecting a gradual improvement in future seasons while building around a young core of Allensworth, Jason Kendell, and Tony Womack.


1997

Though Allensworth set career highs in RBIs, SBs, and games starting in 1997, he failed to improve his overall production in terms of batting average, HRs, and OPS. Allensworth’s lack of notable progress likely lowered his reputation with the Pirates organization.

Despite his unclear future as an individual player, the Pirates seemed to be trending in the right direction as a team, finishing in 2nd place in the NL Central with a record of 79-83.


1998

Jermaine Allensworth split time between Pittsburgh, Kansas City, and the New York Mets in 1998. The primary Center Fielder batted .272 with 5 HRs, 31 RBIs, and 15 SBs while playing all three outfield positions.

Allensworth started the ’98 season with Pittsburgh, who traded him to Kansas City for minor league pitcher Manuel Bernal. Then, two months later, Kansas City dealt Jermaine to the New York Mets for a player to be named later.

It was a stark decline for a player once highly regarded. Allensworth finished the season in New York, where the Mets finished 2nd in the NL East at 88-74, falling short of the postseason but emerging as an up-and-coming organization.


1999

Allensworth returned to the Mets organization in 1999, where he split time between the MLB club and their AAA affiliate. The 27-year-old hit .219 with 3 HRs and 9 RBIs over a 40-game span in the big leagues.

Although the Mets finished 97-66 and made the postseason as a Wild Card, Allensworth was not part of the postseason roster. The Mets lost to Atlanta in the NLCS and traded Allensworth to Boston for Jun Nunnaly shortly after.


2000

After the trade, Allensworth never played a game for the Red Sox or any of their minor-league affiliates. Boston released the former top prospect on March 16, 2000, effectively ending his MLB career.


2001

In January 2001, Allensworth returned to baseball by signing a minor league deal with the Detroit Tigers. He spent the season with their AAA affiliate batting .272 with 10 HRs, 52 RBIs, and 13 SBs.


2002

Jermaine initially signed with the Reds organization, but they released him in April before the season started. Allensworth latched on with the Atlanta Braves on a minor league deal and played 77 games for their AA affiliate.

The CF hit .281 with 1 HR, 36 RBIs, and 8 SBs in what would be his final season playing affiliated baseball.


2004-2008

After spending 2003 out of baseball entirely, Allensworth entered the independent baseball circuit in 2004 with the Joliet Jackhammers.

Jermaine continued his independent career through 2008, playing for the Gary RailCats and Schaumburg Flyers in addition to Joliet. Overall, Allensworth hit .297 with a .777 OPS over five independent league seasons.


Catching Up With Jermaine Allensworth (2024)

Purdue University, where Jermaine played for three seasons before going pro, inducted Allensworth into its Intercollegiate Athletic Hall of Fame in 2018.

As of 2024, his cousin Terry Johnson is an assistant basketball coach at Purdue.


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