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:
- 1875 - The first baseball game played with women professionals takes place in Springfield, Illinois. The diamond is half-sized and a nine-foot high canvas surrounds the entire field. The uniforms are similar to the male version, except the pants are shorter. (1)
- 1886 - At Washington’s Capitol Park, backstop Connie Mack makes his major league debut as the Nationals edge Philadelphia, 4-3. (1,2)
- 1903 - A new National Agreement signed by the National Association of minor league clubs officially organizes professional baseball under one comprehensive set of rules. (1,2)
- 1917 - At Wrigley Field, Military Day is celebrated by a double victory for Chicago over the Reds, with Hippo Vaughn credited with both wins. Vaughn starts the opener and retires after an inning with his team ahead by three runs. The Cubs win, 6-5, with Vic Aldridge allowing two runs in five innings. Aldridge will eventually get credit for the win and not Vaughn. Vaughn then goes nine innings in the nitecap, striking out nine to win, 5-1. (2)
- 1918 - The Red Sox win the World Series in Game 6, on Carl Mays’s second victory, a 2-1 three-hitter. With two on and two out in the third, utility OF George Whiteman lines a hard drive to right field. Max Flack drops it, allowing the only runs off Lefty Tyler. Righty Claude Hendrix, 20-7 during the year, finally makes an appearance, tossing a final inning for the Cubs. Cubs pitchers compile a 1.04 ERA, while Boston’s .186 BA is the lowest ever for a World Series winner, but they compensate by making just one error, a record not beaten this century in a six-game World Series. The Red Sox will realize $1,102 each, the Cubs $671, the smallest winner’s share ever earned. The inning by inning results of the game are relayed to Fort Devans, 58 miles away, via nine homing pigeons. (1,2)
- 1935 - The rampaging Cubs beat the lowly Braves, 15-3. Bill Lee coasts to the win. (2)
- 1956 - Yogi Berra ties the major league career record for home runs by a catcher in the Yankees’ 9-5 victory over Kansas City. His 236th - and the Yankees’ 177th of the season - ties him with Cub great Gabby Hartnett. (2)
- 1964 - Bob Gibson holds the Cubs to two hits, and the Cards win, 5-0. Ken Boyer’s 22nd homer starts the Birds’ scoring. (2)
- 1967 - Houston ties the National League record by using eight pitchers in one nine-inning game, defeating Chicago, 11-10, at the Astrodome. (2)
- 1968 - New York’s Jim McAndrew finally wins one, beating the Cubs, 1-0, on two hits. It is Fergie Jenkins’ fifth 1-0 loss of the season, which ties a major league record. Despite the loss, Jenkins will win 20 for the second straight year, using a club record-tying 40 starts to do it. (2)
- 1969 - The Cubs take a 1-0 lead into the 3rd inning against the Phils when, with a 3-2 count on Dick Allen and runners on first and second, pitcher Dick Selma unexpectedly throws to third base instead of to home. The throw sails over the head of a surprised Ron Santo and the Phils’ Tony Taylor scores the tying run. Selma and Santo had practiced the move but had never used it during the season. The Phils go on to win again over Chicago. (2)
- 1974 - At Shea Stadium, the Mets lose a 25-inning night game to the St. Louis Cardinals, 4-3. Ken Reitz’s two-strike, two-out home run ties the game in the ninth. Two Mets errors lead to the Cardinals’ winning run, starting with an errant pickoff throw from Hank Webb that allows Bake McBride to score all the way from first. The Mets go to the plate 103 times, the only time the century mark has been reached in a major league game; the Cards are not far behind with 99 plate appearances. A record 175 official at-bats are recorded, with a major-league record 45 runners stranded. The seven-hour, four-minute marathon is the longest game played to a decision in major league history. Only a thousand fans are on hand when the game ends at 3:13 a.m. (1,2)
- 1980 - In a 6-5 win over the Cubs, Montreal’s Ron LeFlore steals his 91st base of the season and Rodney Scott steals his 58th, breaking the major-league record for stolen bases by teammates in one season. Lou Brock and Bake McBride set the record with the 1974 Cardinals. (1,2)
- 1998 - The Cubs lose to Milwaukee, 13-11, with Sammy Sosa hitting home run No. 59 in the losing effort. (2)
- 1999 - The Astros defeat the Cubs, 5-3, as Jose Lima becomes the first 20-game winner in the National League. (2)
Today in history:
- 1297 - Battle at Stirling Bridge, Scottish rebel William Wallace defeats the English.
- 1909 - German astronomer Max Wolf rediscovers Halley’s comet.
- 1916 - Clarence Saunders opens “Piggly Wiggly” - the 1st self-service supermarket, in Memphis, Tennessee.
- 1945 - Physician Willem J. Kolff performs the first successful kidney dialysis using his artificial kidney machine in the Netherlands.
- 1973 - Chilean President Salvador Allende, the first elected Marxist president of a South America country, is deposed in a military coup led by general Augusto Pinochet.
- 2001 - Two passenger planes hijacked by Al Qaeda terrorists crash into New York’s World Trade Towers causing the collapse of both and deaths of 2,606 people.
- (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.