On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, Bleed Cubbie Blue brings a you a light-hearted, 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 ‘inside baseball’ on the entries, which change from year to year as we re-examine the subjects.
Today in baseball history:
- 1905 - In his first major league at-bat, 18 year-old center fielder Ty Cobb doubles off Jack Chesbro in the first inning of the Tigers’ 5-3 victory over the Highlanders at Detroit’s Bennett Park. The two-bagger is the first of the 4,189 hits the ‘Georgia Peach’ will collect during his 24-year Hall of Fame career. (1,4)
- 1912 - At Navin Field, Browns’ hurler Earl Hamilton no-hits the Tigers, 5-1, becoming the first hurler to accomplish the feat without recording a strikeout. Detroit gets on the scoreboard in the fourth inning thanks to a Ty Cobb walk, a two-base error, and a fielder’s choice, ruining the southpaw’s bid for a shutout. (1,4)
- 1915 - Three-time 20-game winner Larry Cheney is traded by the Cubs to Brooklyn for OF Joe Schultz. (3)
- 1916 - In the fastest professional baseball nine-inning game ever played, the visiting Winston-Salem Twins beat the Tourists, 2-1, in an astounding thirty-one minutes. The 200 fans in at Oates Park, unaware of the agreement to speed up the NC State League contest because both teams had trains to catch, are so upset with the brief game that Asheville owner L.L. Jenkins assures the angry patrons he will refund their price of admission. (1)
- 1916 - At Fenway Park, Boston’s Dutch Leonard no-hits the Browns, 4-0. The 24-year-old Red Sox southpaw, who will finish the season 18-12 for the eventual World Champs, will hurl another no-hitter in 1918 against Detroit’s Tigers. (1,4)
- 1941 - The Cardinals’ Lon Warneke no-hits the Cincinnati Reds, 2-0, with only three balls hit to the outfield. It is Warneke’s 15th victory of the season and, with the Dodgers’ doubleheader loss to the Giants, puts St. Louis in first place by two percentage points. (3)
- 1952 - Nine-time All-Star infielder Arky Vaughn drowns with a friend when their boat capsized while fishing in a volcanic lake near Eagleville, CA. The former shortstop and third baseman, who compiled a .318 batting average and a .406 on-base percentage playing with the Pirates and Dodgers, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1985. (1,4)
- 1961 - A computer named Casey is used to predict Roger Maris’ chances of passing Babe Ruth’s record of 60 home runs in 154 games. The IBM 1481 believes the Yankee slugger has a 55 percent chance of hitting 61 round-trippers to establish a new single-season mark for homers. (1,4)
- 1973 - Billy Martin orders his pitchers to throw spitballs, to show the umpiring crew that they don’t consistently enforce the rules when Indians right-hander Gaylord Perry is on the mound. The Tiger manager, suspended for three days by American League president Joe Cronin, doesn’t understand being punished for telling the truth about asking his pitchers to throw illegal pitches. (1,4)
- 1992 - Cubs rookie P Jim Bullinger tosses a one-hitter against the Giants in his third big league start, defeating San Francisco, 3-1. The only hit he allows is Kirt Manwaring’s home run in the 8th inning. (3)
- 1999 - In an article in the New York Times, former major league OF Billy Bean reveals his fears as a gay man in the world of major league baseball. Former Dodger Glenn Burke, who died of AIDS in 1995, is the only other ex-player to have acknowledged his homosexuality. (3)
- 2002 - After marathon negotiation sessions to avoid a players’ strike just hours away, Bud Selig announces the players union and owners have reached an agreement on a new four-year CBA without a work stoppage. The settlement, called ‘historic’ by the commissioner, gives the owners the economic restraints they wanted with the players assured of no contraction of teams until the 2007 season, and the gradual implementation of a revenue-sharing plan during the span of the contract. (1)
- 2010 - Carlos Zambrano becomes the first major league pitcher to homer in eight straight seasons since Gary Peters (1963-1971), launching one in a 14-2 Cubs rout of Pittsburgh. (3)
- 2015 - The NL’s eventual 2015 Cy Young Award recipient Jake Arrieta, needing just 116 pitches, beats Los Angeles, 2-0, tossing the 12th no-hitter ever thrown at the Chavez Ravine ballpark, and the 14th no-no in Cubs history. The contest marks the second time in ten games the Dodgers have been unable to get a hit after being held hitless by Astros right-hander Mike Fiers on August 21st.
- 2020 - For the first time in major league history, all three of a team’s starting outfielders multi-homer as the Cubs defeat the Reds, 10-1. Ian Happ, Kyle Schwarber and Jason Heyward all go deep twice. (3)
Cubs birthdays: Cal McVey, Tom Seaton, Kiki Cuyler HOF, Carmen Fanzone, Marlon Byrd, Todd Wellemeyer, Sean Marshall. Also notable: Ted Williams HOF.
- (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.
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Thanks for reading!