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Baseball history unpacked, May 13

Ernie takes Padres to school, Happy birthday, Willy! and other stories

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Chicago Cubs v Arizona Diamondbacks
Now for cake!
Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

... on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, Bleed Cubbie Blue brings a you 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. The embedded links often point to articles that pertain to the scenes, such as reproductions of period newspapers, images, and/or other such material as is often found in the wild.

Today in baseball history:

  • 1929 - For the first time in major league history, a game features both teams wearing numbers on the back of their jerseys when the Indians host the Yankees at League Park in Cleveland. The numerals will become a permanent fixture on each club’s attire. (1)

Box score. The Cubs beat the Braves that day.

  • 1942 - Braves’ pitcher Jim Tobin, en route to a 6-5 victory over the Cubs, becomes the first modern-day hurler to hit three home runs in one game, equaling the feat of Guy Hecker, who hit three inside-the-park round-trippers playing for Louisville in 1886. ‘Ironsides’, who pinch-hit a homer in the eighth inning of yesterday’s contest, would have hit five consecutive blasts, if his first inning fly ball, which was caught against the right field fence, had gone out. (1)

Box score. The Cubs nearly came back — there was a man on second at the end of the game.

  • 1947 - During the pregame infield practice, a barrage of racial slurs is directed at Jackie Robinson by the Cincinnati fans during the Dodgers’ first visit to Crosley Field this season. Brooklyn shortstop Pee Wee Reese, a Southerner from Kentucky with friends attending the game and captain of the team, engages the black infielder in conversation, and then put his arm around his teammate’s shoulder, a gesture that stuns and silences the crowd. (1)
  • 1958 - As a pinch-hitter, Stan Musial collects his 3,000th hit in the sixth inning off Moe Drabowsky in the Cardinals’ 5-3 victory over the Cubs at Wrigley Field. ‘The Man’, the youngest player to reach the milestone, is the eighth major-leaguer to accomplish the feat. (1)
  • 1969 - With his daughter Jan, along with her classmates, in attendance at chilly Wrigley Field, first baseman Ernie Banks drives in seven runs with two three-run homers and a double in the Cubs’ 19-0 rout of San Diego. Following the consecutive no-run performances by Ferguson Jenkins and Ken Holtzman, Dick Selma adds another, making it the first time in 60 years that the team has shut out its opponents in three consecutive games. (1)

Box score. That also got Ernie to 1,500 rbi for his career. Al will have more details on this game later today.

  • 1970 - With two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning at Wrigley Field, Gary Gentry gives up his only hit, a short fly hit by Ernie Banks that outfielder Dave Marshall gets a glove on, but he cannot hold on to the ball. The 23-year-old Mets right-hander settles for a one-hit complete game 4-0 victory over Chicago, but could have been the first hurler in franchise history to throw a no-hit game if official scorer Jim Enright had ruled differently on the blooper to left field. (1)

Box score.

  • 1982 - The Cubs become the first major league team to win 8,000 games when Allen Ripley and Lee Smith combine to shut out Houston in Chicago’s 5-0 victory at the Astrodome. The milestone comes in the 15,337th contest in the 107 year history of the franchise. (1)

Box score.

  • 1991 - In the broadcast booth at Wrigley Field, Skip Caray and Chip Caray, the Braves’ play-by-play announcers, join Cubs legend Harry Caray, the patriarch of the three generation broadcasting family. The 77-year-old grandfather, known for his warm relationship with the Chicago fans, takes tremendous pride that his son and grandson have chosen to be baseball broadcasters. (1)
  • Cubs birthdays: Jimmy Archer, Lou Stringer, Bob Smith, Willson Contreras.


Thanks for reading.