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 various narratives to follow as they unfold over the course of time. Here’s a handy Cubs timeline, to help you follow along.
Today in baseball history:
- 1894 - King Kelly, probably the most popular baseball player of the 19th century, dies of pneumonia in Boston, MA. (2)
- 1920 - At a meeting to depose Ban Johnson as the American League president, a new 12-team National League, made up of the dissenting 11 teams plus one of the five teams loyal to Johnson, is agreed to. John Heydler will be its president and federal judge Kenesaw Landis the proposed chairman of the new commission. This revolutionary plan for a new senior circuit will be discarded a few days later, after four of the five American League clubs still backing Johnson agree to a joint meeting on November 12th in Chicago, IL. (2)
- 1934 - Ford Frick, National League publicity director, is named league president. He will eventually become Commissioner. (1,2)
- 1954 - American League owners approve the move of the Philadelphia Athletics to Kansas City. The vote is 6-2 in favor. The transplanted Athletics will play home games at Municipal Stadium, which will be expanded from 17,000 to 36,000 seats. (2)
- 1977 - Hall of Fame manager Bucky Harris dies on his 81st birthday. Harris won two World Championships and three American League pennants over a 29-year career with the Washington Senators and New York Yankees, among other teams. (2)
- 1989 - Chicago Cubs outfielder Jerome Walton wins the 1989 National League Rookie of the Year Award, collecting 22 of 24 first-place votes to defeat teammate Dwight Smith. They are the first teammates to finish 1-2 in the NL voting since Philadelphia Phillies rookies Jack Sanford and Ed Bouchee in 1957. Walton also becomes the first Cubs player to win rookie honors since Billy Williams, in 1961. (1,2)
- 1998 - Chicago Cubs right fielder Sammy Sosa* is named the National League MVP. Sosa hit 66 home runs and led the National League in RBI with 158 while carrying his team to the playoffs. (2)
- 2005 - Commissioner Bud Selig has made it clear he doesn’t want instant replay. Even Angels manager Mike Scioscia, who had a dreadful call go against his team in the American League Championship Series, says to leave calls to the human element of umpiring. That, however, won’t stop general managers from debating the issue this week. (2)
- 2012 - Hall of Fame executive Lee MacPhail dies at 95 in Delray Beach, FL. He was general manager of the Baltimore Orioles and New York Yankees before serving as American League President from 1974 to 1984, during an era of frequent clashes with Yankees owner George Steinbrenner. (2)
Today in history:
- 1519 - First meeting of Aztec Emperor Moctezuma II and Spanish Conquistador Hernán Cortés in Tenochtitlan, Mexico.
- 1701 - William Penn presents Charter of Privileges, guaranteed religious freedom for the colony in Pennsylvania.
- 1864 - Abraham Lincoln elected to his second term as US President.
- 1895 - German physicist Wilhelm Röentgen produces and detects electromagnetic radiation in a wavelength range today known as X-rays or Röentgen rays.
- 1960 - John F. Kennedy is elected President of the United States.
- 1970 - Tom Dempsey of New Orleans Saints kicks NFL record 63 yard field goal.
- (1) — Today in Baseball History.
- (2) — Baseball Reference.
- (3) — Society for American Baseball Research.
- (4) — Baseball Hall of Fame.
- (5) — This Day in Chicago Cubs history.
- For world history.
Some of these items spread from site to site without being verified. That is exactly why we ask for reputable sources if you have differences with a posted factoid, so that we can address that to the originators and provide clarity if not ‘truth’. Nothing is posted here without at least one instance of corroboration