... 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:
- 1909 - National League president Harry Pulliam, despondent over his inability to handle the problems and controversies of the league, dies after shooting himself in his room at the New York Athletic Club yesterday. Pulliam had been suffering from a nervous breakdown. (2,3)
- 1951 - Against the Phillies, Cubs player-manager Phil Cavarretta earns his money by driving home three runs in a first-game win, 5 - 4, snapping the Cubs’ 10-game home losing streak. His triple in the sixth off Robin Roberts ends the Cubs’ scoreless inning skein of 31 innings, and the consecutive scoreless innings by Phils pitchers at 41. Cavarretta takes the bench in the second game but inserts himself as a pinch-hitter in the seventh when Roberts relieves, and hits a grand slam home run as the Cubs sweep, winning the nitecap, 8 - 6. The nitecap loss goes to Bubba Church, who put two runners on before giving way to Roberts. It is Church’s first and only career loss to Chicago after nine straight wins. (3)
- 1970 - The Cubs purchase 1B/OF Joe Pepitone from the Astros. Pepitone will drive in 31 runs in his first 31 games for his new team.
- 1988 - In the Cubs’ 8 - 3 win over Kevin Gross and the host Phillies, Rick Sutcliffe swipes home, the first pitcher since Pascual Perez in 1984 to steal home. It comes on the front end of a double steal with Mitch Webster. Sutcliffe is the first Cubs pitcher to steal home since Hippo Vaughn in 1919. (3)
- 1998 - Jon Garland, the Cubs’ first-round draft pick last season, is traded in a deadline deal for White Sox reliever Matt Karchner, who will struggle with a 5.14 ERA in 29 appearances for the crosstown rivals. The Pale Hose’s rookie right-hander will spend the first eight seasons of his career with the South Siders, compiling a 92-81 (.532) record, along with an ERA of 4.41 for his new team. (1)
- 1996 - Tom Lasorda calls it quits after twenty seasons as manager of the Dodgers following a heart attack and an angioplasty procedure in June. Bill Russell takes over for the man who won two World Series, four National League pennants and seven division titles. (2)
- 2003 - In a game against the Rangers, Bill Mueller becomes the first player to hit two grand slams in the same game, one from each side of the plate. The Red Sox switch-hitting third baseman, not known for his power, was batting eighth in the Boston lineup. (1)
- 2014 - The Cubs win the longest game in team history, 4-3, as the 16 innings take 6 hours and 27 minutes to complete, 17 minutes longer than a 21-inning game played over two days in 1982; it’s also the record for a Rockies game. Catcher John Baker is pressed into mound duty in the 16th and earns the win when he scores the winning run after leading the bottom of the inning with a walk and is driven home on Starlin Castro’s sacrifice fly. (3)
- (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.