Neal Baker was born in Harlingen, Texas, on April 30, 1904, and attended school at the University of Texas in Austin. A promising baseball player in college, he was signed by the Philadelphia Athletics as an amateur free agent in 1927. He made his major league debut as a pitcher for the Athletics on April 30, 1927 but played in only five games, his last being on July 26, 1927, before being sent back down to the minors for further training. He continued in the minors until 1936, his best season being 17-10 with the C Class East Texas League Longview Cannibals, before he left the sport entirely. He passed away on January 5, 1982 and buried in Houston.