On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, Bleed Cubbie Blue brings a you a Cubs-centric look at baseball’s colorful past, with plenty of the lore and deep dives into various narratives that expand over the course of time. Here’s a handy Cubs timeline, to help you follow along. Don’t be afraid to click the links for some ‘inside baseball’ on the entries, which change from year to year as we re-examine the subjects.
Today in baseball history:
- 1900 - By defeating the Cubs, 11-4, Boston Beaneaters’ hurler Kid Nichols takes only nine seasons to get his 300th victory. The 30-year-old righty will amass 361 wins during his 15-year career and remain the youngest player ever to accomplish the feat. (1,3,4)
- 1903 - In a game with the New York Highlanders, White Sox OF Danny Green is called out at first base by Jack Sheridan, and after returning to the bench continues to yell at the umpire. Sheridan finally rushes the bench and hits Green with his mask. Green then belts the umpire, who is taken from the grounds and locked up on charges of disorderly conduct. An hour later, he is released after bail is posted by Highlander president Joseph Gordon. (3)
- 1909 - Inventor George Cahill brings his portable lights to Grand Rapids, Michigan for a night game with the Zanesville Infants (Central League). The host team wins, 11-10, in seven innings, with the only complaints coming from the outfielders, who have trouble seeing balls hit above the lights. (3)
- 1912 - To fend off possible future challenges to the legality of the standard contract and its reserve clause, new wording provides for compensation to the player for the right to renew. A player’s salary is specified as 75 percent for his services and 25 percent for the privilege of reserving them for the following season. (3)
- 1914 - Suffering heavy losses from Federal League competition in Baltimore, Orioles owner Jack Dunn offers Babe Ruth (plus Ernie Shore and C Ben Egan) for $10,000 to old friend Connie Mack, who refuses, pleading poverty. Cincinnati, which has a working agreement giving them the choice of two players, ignores Ruth and takes OF George Twombly and SS Claud Derrick. Dunn finally peddles his threesome to new owner Joe Lannin of the Red Sox for a reported $25,000. (3)
- 1935 - At a special meeting, the American League owners raise the waiver price to $7,500. (3)
- 1936 - The National League, having lost the first three All-Star Games, wins the 1936 All-Star Game, 4-3 at Boston’s National League Park with four different Cub players (Augie Galan, Billy Herman, Gabby Hartnett and Frank Demaree) scoring runs. After Dizzy Dean and Carl Hubbell each pitch scoreless three-inning stints, Curt Davis is hammered by the American League, including Lou Gehrig’s home run, but Lon Warneke shuts the door. Meanwhile, the NL is helped by Joe DiMaggio’s loose fielding and error and Augie Galan’s home run. Joe DiMaggio is the first rookie to play in an All-Star Game. The NL plays its starting lineup except for two late-inning pinch hitters. Local favorite and three-time starter Wally Berger doesn’t appear. Missing from the NL roster are Dolph Camilli and Buck Jordan, co-leaders in the batting race at .348, as well as the eventual batting champ, Paul Waner. (1,3)
- 1948 - The Indians stun the baseball world by signing Satchel Paige, veteran Negro League pitcher (on his 42nd birthday). The move is ridiculed by some as a Bill Veeck publicity stunt, and J.G. Taylor Spink in The Sporting News editorializes, “Veeck has gone too far in his quest for publicity [...] To sign a hurler at Paige’s age is to demean the standards of baseball in the big circuits.” The 42-year-old Paige will answer the critics in his first game tomorrow, getting a relief decision in a 8-6 win over New York in a doubleheader sweep. He will finish at 6-1. Paige is the oldest player to debut in the majors, but not the first 40-year-old: Chuck Hostetler in 1944 was 40. (1,3)
- 1968 - Phil Regan picks up two wins in relief for the second time this season as the Cubs sweep the Pirates, 5-4 and 4-3, edging Bob Veale and Elroy Face. Regan won a pair on April 21st for the Dodgers, and no other reliever has ever won a pair twice in a season. The Vulture will the top the National League with 12 relief wins and 25 saves. (3)
- 1971 - Commissioner Bowie Kuhn announces that players from the Negro Leagues elected to the Hall of Fame will be given full membership in the museum. It had been previously announced that they would be honored in a separate wing. (3)
- 1974 - The Cubs snap Buzz Capra’s nine-game winning streak when the team beats the Braves at Wrigley Field, 4-3. The 26-year-old All-Star right-hander, who established a franchise mark for consecutive victories, will finish the season with a 16-8 record, posting a major league-leading ERA of 2.28. (1,3)
- 1977 - Chicago’s Rick Reuschel shuts out the Cardinals to run his record to 12-2. Reuschel has not given up an earned run, except a homer, since June 1st. (3)
- 1993 - Tom Browning decides that he has seen the view from the dugout often enough, so he leaves Wrigley Field and watches the Reds beat the Cubs 4-3 from the roof of a three-story building across Sheffield Avenue. He is fined $500 for leaving the dugout - not to mention the ballpark - during a game. (2)
- 2005 - The sports of baseball and softball are dropped from the for the 2012 Olympic Games scheduled to take place in London. It is the first time in 69 years that events have been cut from the games. There is criticism that these events are American-dominated, though the Cuban national team won Gold in 2004 and Australia won Silver. Japan and South Korea have appeared in the Silver Medal game in the past as well. Another reason given is that top professional players do not always appear, though Nippon Pro Baseball and the Korea Baseball Organization have routinely sent their top stars, as does the Cuban National League. (3)
- 2011 - The Cubs fall into an 8-0 hole against the Nationals before rallying for a 10-9 win. Darwin Barney drives in Tony Campana with a 9th-inning double off Henry Rodriguez, his third hit and RBI of the day, to seal the win. The comeback starts when manager Davey Johnson leaves a tiring Livan Hernandez on the mound in the suxh inning, trying to save his bullpen; by the time he removes his ace from the game, the Cubs have scored six runs off the Cuban hurler. It is the largest blown lead in Nats franchise history, including its years in Montreal before moving to the nation’s capital. (3)
- 2015 - The Cubs sweep a doubleheader at home for the first time since 2003 as they dispose of the Cardinals, 7-4 and 5-3. They score thrice in the seventh inning of the nitecap to ensure the double win, a frame which features Cards P Seth Maness being ejected for arguing that Addison Russell’s single down the first base line is foul, and his successor Kevin Siegrist throwing a potential double play grounder by Dexter Fowler into the outfield. (3)
- (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.
There is a very active baseball history community and there are many facets to their views. We strive for clarity. Please let us know (nicely) if you feel that an item is in error and we will address that issue to the originator(s), if at all possible.
Thanks for reading!