... 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:
- 1839 - Due to an erroneous eye-witness account, Abner Doubleday is given credit for establishing the first baseball game is played in America. The Hall of Fame, which opens a century later in Cooperstown, celebrates the origin of our national pastime in this small upstate New York town, although it is doubtful the West Point cadet was ever there or ever watched a baseball game. (1)
- 1880 - At the Worcester Agriculture Fairgrounds, Lee Richmond pitches the first perfect game, beating Cleveland, 4-0. The 23-year-old rookie southpaw threw a no-hitter in a collegiate exhibition against the White Stockings last season. (1)
- 1939 - With much of its funding provided by the Clark Foundation, a charitable organization established by the Singer Sewing Machine Company, the Baseball Hall of Fame is dedicated in Cooperstown, the site selected due to an erroneous report made that claimed Abner Doubleday had invented the game in the small town located in upstate New York. The greatest-ever gathering of members and future inductees of the Hall of Fame accept their plaques: Grover Alexander, Ty Cobb, Eddie Collins, Walter Johnson, Nap Lajoie, Connie Mack, Babe Ruth, George Sisler, Tris Speaker, Honus Wagner and Cy Young. (1,3)
- 1961 - An ailing Bill Veeck sells his interest in the White Sox to Arthur Allyn, a minority partner. Allyn also buys Hank Greenberg’s stock to acquire a controlling interest. Greenberg remains as General Manager. (2) GG Allyn was unavailable for comment.
- 1970 - Dock Ellis throws a 2-0 no-hitter against the Padres in San Diego during the first game of a twin bill. The former Pirates right-hander, who became an advocate of anti-drug programs, claims he was under the influence of LSD while tossing the most memorable game in his career. (1)
- 1978 - The Cubs send 22-year-old rookie Ron Davis to the Yankees to complete a deal made two days ago which brought Ken Holtzman to Chicago. The trade turns out better for New York when Davis posts a 27-10 (.730) record in as a reliever during his four years in the Bronx, and the 33 year-old southpaw starter Holtzman, in his second stint in the Windy City, compiles a 6-12 mark before retiring after two seasons of rejoining the team on the North side. (1)
- 1979 - The Tigers fire manager Les Moss, hiring Sparky Anderson. (2)
- 1981 - Major League Baseball experiences its first in-season work stoppage. The 50-day strike, which will end on July 31, results in 712 games not being played. (1)
- 1996 - Marge Schott is forced to relinquish her role as managing general partner of the Reds for two years due to her questionable comments about Hitler. The Cincinnati owner, in an interview last month with ESPN, stated “Everybody knows [Hitler] was good at the beginning, but he just went too far.” (1)
- Cubs birthdays: John Stedronsky, Otto Knabe, Jack Cusick, Bob Thorpe, Damon Buford, Dallas Beeler.
- (1) — The National Pastime.
- (2) — Today in Baseball History.
- (3) — Baseball Reference.
- (4) — Society for American Baseball Research.
- (5) — Baseball Hall of Fame.
Thanks for reading.