... on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, Bleed Cubbie Blue brings a you a lighthearted 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.
Today in baseball history:
- 1914 - The Chicago Cubs name future Hall of Famer Roger Bresnahan as their manager. The former St. Louis Cardinals skipper will be in the dugout for just one year during which Chicago will finish fourth with a 73-80 record. (1,3)
- 1951 - Former Chicago Cubs first baseman and future star of the TV series The Rifleman Chuck Connors becomes the first player to refuse to participate in the major league draft. Currently the 1B for the Los Angeles Angels of the Pacific Coast League, Connors wants to stay in California, instead of going to whatever team might draft him for the major leagues. The PCL views his refusal in a positive manner, allowing them to ask for higher prices for minor league players than what the major leagues usually offers. (1,3)
- 1966 - After finishing the Cy Young season with a 27-9 record and a league-leading 1.73 ERA, 30-year-old Sandy Koufax shocks the baseball world by announcing his retirement. The southpaw, who has thrown four no-hitters and set the single-season strikeout record last year with 382, cites his arthritic arm and the fear of permanent damage as the reason for placing himself on the voluntarily retired list. (1)
- 1987 - Chicago Cubs outfielder Andre Dawson becomes the first player from a last-place club ever to win an Most Valuable Player Award, taking National League honors with a .287 batting average and as the league leader in home runs (49) and RBI (137). (1)
- 2008 - Ryan Dempster (17-6, 2.96) and the Cubs agree to a $52 million, four-year deal. The 31 year-old right-handed starter had been the club’s closer, saving 87 games in 102 chances during the 2005-07 seasons. (1)
- 2011 - The Cubs introduce Dale Sveum as the fifth-place team’s new manager, replacing Mike Quade, the former skipper fired by Chicago’s new GM Theo Epstein at the end of the season. The 52nd manager in franchise history, whose managerial experience consists of sixteen games as Milwaukee’s interim skipper in 2008, is considered a no-nonsense baseball lifer who will stress the game’s fundamentals while implementing “high standards of accountability” for the players. (1)
- 2011 - Major League Baseball owners and the Players Association reach a tentative deal on a new five-year collective bargaining agreement. The agreement signed in Rosemont, IL near Chicago’s O’Hare Airport, includes a ceiling for bonuses paid to picks in the amateur draft and international free agents. It also provides for testing for human growth hormone and a raise in the minimum salary to $480,000. The agreement will be finalized on November 22nd. (3)
- 2015 - In the Cy Young Award vote, Jake Arrieta of the Cubs is the winner in the National League while Dallas Keuchel does the same in the American League. Both pitchers won their respective league’s Wild Card Game with strong performances, in addition to being dominant in the regular season. (3)
- Cubs birthdays: Frank Griffith, Les Mann, Gene Mauch, Cal Koonce, Sterling Slaughter, Dan Briggs, Steve Henderson, Jamie Moyer, Ron Coomer, Tom Gordon, Shawn Camp.
- (1) — The National Pastime.
- (2) — Today in Baseball History.
- (3) — Baseball Reference.
- (4) — Society for American Baseball Research.
- (5) — Baseball Hall of Fame.
- (6) — This Day in Chicago Cubs history.
Thanks for reading.