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:
- 1913 - In a game which features U.S. President Woodrow Wilson throwing out the first pitch, the New York Highlanders become the New York Yankees. Playing their first game under their new nickname, the Yankees lose to the Washington Senators, 2-1, as future Hall of Famer Walter Johnson picks up the win for Washington. After giving up an unearned run in the 1st inning, Johnson begins a string of shutout innings that will reach a major league record 56 before the St. Louis Browns score in the 4th inning on May 14th. (1,2)
- 1947 - In one of the most significant moments in baseball history, Jackie Robinson becomes the first black player of the 20th century to sign a major league contract. Robinson agrees a one-year deal with the Brooklyn Dodgers, whose general manager, Branch Rickey, personally recruited Robinson from the Negro Leagues. (1,2)
- 1962 - At Colt Stadium, the Houston Colt .45s make their major league debut with an 11-2 victory over the Chicago Cubs. Houston right fielder Roman Mejias hits a pair of three-run home runs before a crowd of 25,271 fans. Bobby Shantz pitches a complete-game five-hitter and Don Cardwell is the loser. The Colt .45s and New York Mets join the National League as expansion teams this year. (1,2)
- 1979 - Chicago White Sox owner Bill Veeck offers fans free admission to the next home game after his team’s unimpressive debut on Opening Day. The White Sox’s 10-2 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays prompts the unusual action by Veeck. (2)
- 1997 - The Chicago Cubs fall to 0-8, the worst start in the club’s 122-year history, following a 1-0 loss to the Florida Marlins at frigid Wrigley Field. Florida pitcher Alex Fernandez, making his first appearance in Chicago since he left the White Sox over the winter as a free agent, is two outs away from a no-hitter when pinch-hitter Dave Hansen legs out an infield hit off the pitcher’s glove. Fernandez settles for the one-hitter. (1,2)
- 2013 - Cubs minor league prospect Jorge Soler is ejected from a game in the Florida State League for charging the opposite dugout with a bat in the seventh inning. Soler had been spiked while sliding at second base the previous inning. He will receive a five-game suspension for his outburst. (2)
- 2017 - After a wait of 108 years, a two-hour rain delay pushes back the ceremony to raise the Cubs’ 2016 World Championship banner at Wrigley Field a little bit more, but a boisterous sellout crowd is on hand to see 1B Anthony Rizzo being the first player to raise the flag and to take the World Series Trophy on the field. Rizzo is then the hero of the home opener, as his ninth-inning single off Kenley Jansen of the Dodgers drives in the winning run in a 3-2 win. (2)
Cubs birthdays: Tom Parrott, Chuck Connors, Tom Lundstedt. Also notable: Ross Youngs HOF.
Today in history:
- 837 - Comet 1P/837 F1 (Halley) approaches within 0.0334 AUs of Earth.
- 1607 - The British colonial expedition that would found Jamestown departs Puerto Rico for the American mainland.
- 1710 - The first law regulating copyright is issued in Great Britain.
- 1790 - US Patent system forms.
- 1815 - Mount Tambora in the Dutch East Indies experiences a cataclysmic eruption, one of the most powerful in history, killing around 71,000 people, causes global volcanic winter.
- 1869 - Congress increases number of Supreme Court judges from seven to nine.
- 1970 - Paul McCartney officially announces the split of The Beatles.
- (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 (this also includes the history bullets). Thanks for reading, and thanks also for your cooperation.