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Baseball history unpacked, May 9

A thrice-weekly digest, replete with #Cubs, #MLB, and #MiLB factoids gathered from allegedly reputable sources. This one passes the Turing test.

Dillon Maples
Photo by Daniel Shirey/MLB Photos via Getty Images

On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, Bleed Cubbie Blue is pleased to present a light-hearted, Cubs-centric look at baseball’s colorful past, with plenty of the lore and deep dives into various narratives that we can observe as they expand and change over the course of time. Here’s a handy Cubs timeline, to help you follow along. We also include Cubs’ player birthdays and a bit of world history, for context.

Today in baseball history:

  • 1871 - The first Hispanic player in major league baseball is Esteban Enrique Bellan. The 21-year old Cuban infielder plays for the Troy Haymakers of the National Association. (2)
  • 1878 - Sam Weaver pitches a no-hitter to lead the Milwaukee Cream Citys to their first N.L. win, beating Indianapolis 2-1, the one run scoring after a walk. One scorer gave a hit to John Clapp of the Blues, but Weaver is generally credited with a no-hitter. (1)
  • 1911 - At Hilltop Park, Christy Mathewson and Three Finger Brown renew their rivalry, Matty emerges the winner, 5-2, over the Cubs’ ace. (2)
  • 1937 - At the Polo Grounds, Carl Hubbell wins his fourth of the season and his 20th in a row overall, subduing the Cubs, 4-1. The game is scoreless for six innings. Hubbell matches the mark of Rube Marquard, who won one game in 1911 and 19 straight more in 1912. (2)
  • 1943 - Due to the poor grade of rubber cement used to make baseballs because of wartime rubber shortages, a different type of baseball is put into play today with dramatic results. In eight games, six home runs are hit compared to a total of nine homers tallied in the season’s first 72 games. (2)
  • 1946 - At Chicago, Braves first sacker Johnny Hopp swipes home in the 12th to break a 2-2 tie with the Cubs. Boston scores twice more to win, 5-2, with Lefty Wallace taking the decision over Ray Prim. (2)
  • 1963 - Ernie Banks becomes the first National League first baseman to register 22 putouts (and 23 chances) in a game, as the Cubs beat Pittsburgh, 3-1, on Dick Ellsworth’s two-hitter. Singles in the second and ninth are the only Buc safeties, as they pound Ellsworth’s slider into the ground. (2)
  • 1979 - At the Astrodome, substitute umpire Dave Pallone ejects the entire Cardinal bench after the players throw helmets and bats onto the field to protest a call. The minor league arbitrator was pressed into duty due to the major league umpire strike. (2)
  • 1984 - The longest - and slowest - game in American League history ends in the 25th inning when Harold Baines homers off Chuck Porter to give the White Sox a 7-6 victory over the Brewers. It is the latest homer in history. The game falls one inning shy of the major league record, but takes by far the most time to play: eight hours and six minutes. The contest was suspended the previous day after 17 innings with the score tied 3-3, and each team scores three more runs in the 21st. The Sox lose a chance to win in the 21st as runner Dave Stegman is touched by 3B coach Jim Leyland, which leads to a Sox protest. Tom Seaver pitches the final inning to earn the win, then wins the regularly-scheduled game as well, 5-4. Tom Paciorek of the Sox sets a major-league record as he enters the game in the 4th inning and registers nine at bats as a substitute. (2)
  • 1993 - Cubs 1B Mark Grace hits for the cycle in Chicago’s 5-4 loss to the Padres. He is the 14th Cub to do so. (2)
  • 2010 - Dallas Braden pitches the 19th perfect game in major league history as the Oakland A’s defeat the Tampa Bay Rays, owners of the best record and best offense in the majors coming into the game, 4-0. Braden’s is the second perfect game in franchise history, following that of Catfish Hunter on May 8, 1968; it also comes less than ten months after Mark Buehrle pitched the last perfecto, also against the Rays, on July 23, 2009. (2)

Cubs birthdays: Gus Krock, Josh Reilly, Tommy Clarke, Billy Jurges, Sam Mejias, Laddie Renfroe, Dillon Maples. Also notable: Tony Gwynn HOF.

Today in world history:

  • 1386 - Treaty of Windsor between Portugal and England (oldest diplomatic alliance in the world still in force).
  • 1753 - King Louis XV disbands French parliament.
  • 1785 - British inventor Joseph Bramah patents beer-pump handle.
  • 1865 - President Andrew Johnson issues a proclamation declaring armed resistance in the South is virtually at an end; this is the commonly accepted end date of the American Civil War.
  • 1914 - US President Woodrow Wilson proclaims Mother’s Day.
  • 1922 - The International Astronomical Union formally adopt Annie Jump Cannon’s stellar classification system, which with only minor changes, is still used today.
  • 1941 - British intelligence at Bletchley Park breaks German spy codes after capturing Enigma machines aboard the weather ship Muenchen.

Common sources:

And thanks to JohnW53 and our other reader for additional wisdom.

There is a very active baseball history community and there are many facets to their views. We strive for clarity. Please be aware that we are trying to make the historical record as represented by our main sources coherent and as accurate as is possible. No item is posted here without corroboration. Some of these items spread from site to site without being verified. That is exactly why we ask for reputable sources, so that we can address them to the originators. BBRef is very cooperative in this regard, as are SABR and the Baseball Almanac. We have removed thenationalpastime from our sourcing list, as there have been multiple complaints about their content and they do not respond to attempts to communicate.

Also please remember that this is supposed to be fun.

Thank you for your cooperation. And thanks for reading!