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Baseball history unpacked, November 5

Happy birthday, Bryan LaHair, and other stories

Not everyone gets to do that

A wildly popular Cubs-centric look at baseball’s past. Here’s a handy Cubs timeline, to help you follow along as we review select scenes from the rich tapestry of Chicago Cubs and Major League Baseball history.

Not much happened on November 5th, but it’s a former Cub’s birthday, and that’s worth celebrating.

Today in baseball history:

Bryan LaHair is a guy that most of us remember quite well. He wasn’t especially good, except for the first half of the 2012 season, but he was a major-league ballplayer and made an All-Star Game, and not everyone gets to do that. I remember calling him the next Daryle Ward... which is in and of itself not a bad thing.

Jeremy Fuchs of Sports Illustrated had a nice article about Bryan a couple of years ago, when he played in the 19th Atlantic League All-Star Game at age 33. It took LaHair six years to even get a cup of coffee in the majors, and he was a starter for just that half-season before Anthony Rizzo pushed him out to right field and Brett Jackson nudged him to the bench.

He wasn’t re-signed, instead heading for Japan, where he injured one of the carpal bones in his left wrist, which led to offseason surgery and a return to the States and the minor leagues, and eventually, the independent leagues.

Bryan spent the 2018 season as hitting coach for the Billings Mustangs, and did an interview with Mike Scherting of 406mtsports in July. He closed that interview by saying:

“I think the special part of revisiting it is every year when the game comes on my brother texts me and I get a little emotional then. He always reminds me this time of year, and my family does, too. It’s definitely a gratifying and humbling moment every time that game is on and I get a chance to say, ‘I played in that game. I know what it feels like to play in that game.’”

Here’s some career highlights: