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Monday, May 3, 2021

Frank Brubaker saw two seasons, missed bigs, but son made it

John Brubaker 1990 Fort Lauderdale Yankees card
Making his way through the minors, Pittsburgh Pirate JT Brubaker always knew he could call his dad for help, former minor leaguer Frank Brubaker, the younger Brubaker told The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette in April 2021.

"It's a little harder now with changing time zones and that sort of thing," JT Brubaker told The Post-Gazette of his talks with his dad. "We would just talk about the game, little things, stuff I could change if I gave up a couple hits. Always talking about my growth as a pitcher."

The younger Brubaker made his major league debut with the Pirates in 2020. The father never made the bigs. Frank Brubaker played two pro seasons. He topped out at high-A Fort Lauderdale.

Frank Brubaker's career started in 1989, signed by the Yankees as an undrafted free agent out of Tecumseh High School in New Carlisle, Ohio. Brubaker was also credited by his given first name, John Brubaker.

Brubaker's own parent, his mom to be precise, helped get him signed, as well as into college, as she insisted on tuition to go along with his Yankees pro contract, The Dayton Daily News wrote in September 1988.

"I wanted to (sign), but I can't because I'm not 21," Brubaker told The Daily News. "My mom's stubborn as heck. Once she made up her mind, that's it."

Brubaker then hit the field for the Yankees in 1989. He played in the rookie Gulf Coast League and at short-season Oneonta. He saw 16 outings, two starts overall, with a 2.50 ERA and a 7-2 record.

He then moved to high-A Fort Lauderdale for 1990. He saw 40 outings there, one start. He went 4-5, with a 5.74 ERA. That season marked his last as a pro.

Brubaker then settled back in in the Dayton area, had a son and watched him grow up and even play at the same high school. He then watched his son get drafted in 2015 and, in 2020, make the majors.

Upon JT Brubaker making the majors in July 2020, the younger Brubaker expressed happiness for both JT and his parents to The Springfield News-Sun.

"I'm happy for his family," Roger Culbertson told The News-Sun. "His dad and mom have supported him all along. It's been eight years since high school. It's been a long time. They're good people."

John Brubaker 1990 Fort Lauderdale Yankees card

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:3,639
Made the Majors:1,249-34.3%
Never Made Majors:2,390-65.7%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors:520
10+ Seasons in the Minors:307

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