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Wrigley Field historical sleuthing: Modern edition

Here’s a game from only a few years ago.

Here’s the full photo, because there are a couple of things you might not be able to see above:

This is obviously after the second bleacher renovation, because the right field seats are much larger than after the 2006 renovation. Also, the message board that was previously underneath the scoreboard is gone — that was taken down after the video boards were constructed.

So this has to be from mid-2015 on.

The Cubs are playing a red team and it’s a night game. The red team is warming up in the outfield, it’s 5:50 p.m., this is during batting practice.

Here’s what I got when I enlarged the details on the scoreboard. It’s pixellated, but you can tell the red team is CINCINNATI. It’s pretty easo to read some of the other matchups, too; OAKLAND/TAMPA BAY is clear.

One other thing that I was able to find from the left side of the board is the Cubs pitcher number: 35. There’s only one pitcher from this era in Cubs history who wore that number: Cole Hamels.

So I searched for all night games Hamels started against the Reds at Wrigley Field as a Cub. There were three.

Just one matched all the other matchups on the board. This game was played Friday, September 14, 2018.

A Friday night! Well, that’s unusual. The reason the Cubs were permitted this rare Friday night game was the crunch schedule that September which had forced them to fly to Washington the previous day — a scheduled off day — to make up a game against the Nationals. Here’s the article I wrote in 2018 describing when the city granted permission for that Friday night game, along with another call to repeal the Friday night game prohibition.

The Cubs won this Friday night game 3-2. Ian Happ hit a three-run homer in the seventh inning for the difference. Here is Happ’s home run [VIDEO].

The win wasn’t enough for the Cubs that year. They needed one more victory in 2018 to avoid the tiebreaker game against the Brewers for the division title.

Oh, well. Nice photo of Wrigley, anyway.