... 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:
- 1845 - The Knickerbocker Base Ball Club is formed, and Alexander Cartwright’s 20 rules, presented on September 13th, are adopted. (3)
- 1905 - In Chicago, Christy Mathewson and Carl Lundgren hook up in a tight pitchers’ duel, decided in Chicago’s favor on a mental error by Giants 2B Bill Dahlen. With two on and two out in the fifth inning, Dahlen bobbles a grounder and touches second base as the runner arrives. Dahlen, thinking that he has the third out, rolls the ball to the mound. But ump Bob Emslie calls the runner safe. Johnny Evers, the runner on third base, alertly scores on the play for the game’s only run. The loss stops Matty’s win streak at 11 games. (3)
- 1907 - In Chicago, the Cubs clinch the pennant by beating the Phillies, 4 - 1. The game is washed out after 7½ innings with Ed Reulbach winning in relief of Three Finger Brown. Chicago pulls off a triple play in the 5th inning to help seal the win. (3)
- 1908 - Giants P Christy Mathewson and Cubs P Three Finger Brown battle in the most controversial game ever played. The score is 1 - 1, with two outs in the last of the 9th when Fred Merkle’s failure to touch second after an apparent game-winning hit by Al Bridwell scoring Moose McCormick from third costs the Giants a 2-1 win; the ump calls Merkle out and rules the game a tie. Merkle’s ‘boner’ will eventually cost the Giants the flag. (1,3)
- 1961 - Ernie Banks voluntarily takes the bench as a sore knee brings his 717 consecutive-games-played streak to an end. (2)
- 1978 - The Angels’ 27-year-old OF Lyman Bostock, a .311 lifetime hitter, is hit by a shotgun blast while riding in a car in Gary, IN. The shot was meant for one of the other passengers in the car. He will die in the early hours of the next day. (1,3)
- 1986 - Houston’s Jim Deshaies strikes out the first eight batters on the way to a two-hit, 4 - 0, win over the Dodgers. Deshaies breaks the major-league record of 7, last tied by Joe Cowley on May 28th. He finishes with 10 strikeouts. (1,3)
1998 - Sammy Sosa breaks an 0 for 21 slump, hitting his 64th and 65th home runs as the Cubs build a 7 - 0 lead over the Brewers. Milwaukee fights back, however, and scores three in the last of the 9th when Chicago OF Brant Brown drops a routine fly ball with the bases loaded and two out to allow three Brewers to score. Rod Beck is on the mound when the Merkle-like error occurs (Fred Merkle’s boner occurred exactly 90 years ago). Milwaukee wins, 8 - 7, and the Cubs remain tied for the wild card spot with the Mets, who lose to Montreal, 3 - 0. With his eight total bases, Sammy has now topped the 400 mark. (1,3)
- 2001 - Sammy Sosa becomes the first player in history to hit three home runs in a game three times in a season. Despite his trio of blasts, the Cubs still lose to the Astros, 7 - 6. (1,3)
- 2011 - Starlin Castro becomes the youngest Cubs player to collect 200 hits in a season when he singles off Chris Carpenter leading off the game in St. Louis. The Cubs’ 21 year-old shortstop accomplishes the feat at an age two years younger than Billy Herman (1932) and Augie Galan (1935), who were both 23 at the time. (3)
- Cubs birthdays: Joe Kelly, Mack Stewart, Oscar Zamora, Dennis Lamp, Tony Fossas, Willie Greene, Chris Volstad, Gonzalez Germen.
- (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.