... 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 hand-threaded seams from the rich tapestry of Chicago Cubs and Major League Baseball history*.
Today in baseball history:
- 1888 - Kansas City Cowboys rookie Billy Hamilton, recently purchased from Worcester, steals his first base in the major leagues. Before returning to the minors in 1902, Sliding Billy will amass 912 stolen bases, a record broken by Lou Brock in 1979.
- 1948 - Before 72,434 in Cleveland, ancient Satchel Paige makes his first start, pitching seven innings against the Senators before being relieved. Paige picks up the win, 5-3, which moves Cleveland (56-38) into a four-way tie for first. (1,3)
- 1959 - For the first time in major league history a second All-Star Game is played in the same season. The American League posts a 5-3 victory at the Los Angeles Coliseum as the White Sox’s Nellie Fox singles in the decisive run. (1,3)
- 1967 - Charlie Finley fires his manager Alvin Dark after the two disagree over the owner’s handling player discipline. ‘Charlie O’ had fined and suspended Lew Krausse, Jr. for the pitcher’s reported rowdy behavior on a team flight, prompting the team’s first baseman Ken Harrelson, who will also be released, to call the A’s owner a menace to the sport. (1)
- 1967 - The Braves set a club mark by hitting seven home runs in a 10-3 victory over the Cubs, with Tito Francona, Joe Torre (2), Clete Boyer (2), Denis Menke, and Hank Aaron all contributing to the record. All of Atlanta’s round-trippers come during the first five frames of the Wrigley Field contest, and all are solo shots, except for Boyer’s two-run blast in the third inning. (1)
- 1972 - Cubs pitcher Bill Hands allows one hit, by Ken Singleton, in beating the Expos, 3-0, in the nitecap. The Cubs lose the opener, 2-1, as Jack Aker absorbs his third loss in his last five save opportunities. (3)
- 1987 - The Twins’ Joe Niekro is caught with a file on the mound and is ejected during the fourth inning of Minnesota’s 11-3 win over California. He will be suspended for 10 games by American League president Bobby Brown, who doesn’t buy Niekro’s story that he had been filing his nails on the bench and stuck the file in his back pocket when the inning started. (1)
- 1987 - After his ejection in the bottom of the 12th inning for arguing a close call at first base, Columbia Mets manager Butch Hobson yanks the bag out of the ground and brings it into the clubhouse in protest. The bounced skipper is convinced to return the base to the field because the team has only one set of bases, but not before he sprays it bright orange to make the bag easier to see for the umpire. (1)
- 2000 - Kevin Mitchell of the Sonoma County Crushers is expelled for the rest of the season from the independent Western Baseball League for punching the owner of an opposing team. The former National League MVP allegedly hit Solano Steelheads owner Bruce Portner, who had come on the field after a brawl had ended which was caused by a pitch thrown behind Mitchell. (3)
The simCubs are still way out in front but they’ve lost two games in a row due to bullpen meltdowns and that ship needs righting. Brandon Palmer personally fumbled away the ninth inning, allowing the two Jasons to face southpaw Josh Hader and then allowing Jesus Luzardo to bat to close out the game, with right-handed bats available to pinch hit. Chances of overcoming Milwaukee’s advantage were slim to start with, but Palmer’s mismanagement put the game out of reach after Jason Heyward and Jason Kipnis both struck out. Jon Lester turned in a credible outing, but the ‘pen punted. SimKimbrel blew another save and took the loss, and normally dependable Luzardo threw a meatball to Lorenzo Cain for the back-breaker.
The first-place Braves are in for a four-game showdown at simWrigley. All games and other video are available at the BCB Media Center.
- (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.
*We try to vet each item. Please let us know if an item is in error, especially if you have a source.