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:
- 1879 - Baseball’s reserve clause is born. National League owners meeting in Buffalo, NY, seeking to limit player salaries, led by Boston’s Arthur Soden come to a secret agreement whereby five players on each team will be “reserved” - off-limits to all other clubs. The reserve clause will be in effect for the 1880 season. The owners tell the newspapers that they have agreed upon a uniform contract with no salary advances. (2)
- 1919 - Arnold Rothstein decides to finance the World Series fix. The plan calls for Nat Evans to give a $40,000 advance to Sport Sullivan to give to the players, with an additional $40,000 to be put in a safe at the Hotel Congress in Chicago, IL. Evans takes $29,000 and bets on the Cincinnati Reds, giving Chick Gandil only $10,000. (2)
- 1935 - Augie Galan, who makes a league-leading 748 plate appearances while playing the full 154-game schedule, ends the season without hitting into a double play. The Cubs center fielder did line into an 11th-inning triple play in the team’s 3-2 loss to the Reds in April at Wrigley Field. (2)
- 1945 - Paul Gillespie becomes the first of only two players in baseball history ever to hit home runs in their first and last big league at bats. The wartime Cubs reserve catcher went deep against the Giants at the Polo Grounds on September 11, 1942 and ends his career homering at the spacious Forbes Fields, home of the Pittsburgh Pirates. (2)
- 1945 - The Cubs clinch the National League flag on Hank Borowy’s 4-3 win over Pittsburgh in the first game of a doubleheader. (1)
- 1963 - Playing in his one and ONLY Major League game, Houston Colt 45 outfielder John Paciorek, brother of Jim and Tom, went three for three (all singles), walked twice, had three runs batted in and scored four times. (1,2)
- 1971 - Ron Hunt gets hit by a pitch from Milt Pappas. It is the 50th time this season Hunt is plunked, which at the time is considered a record, as no one is aware that Hugh Jennings had been plunked 51 times in 1896, and not 49 as was then listed. (1,2)
- 1983 - In game which lasts only two hours and twenty minutes, Mike Warren, in his last start of the season, no-hits the White Sox, 3-0, in front of 9,058 fans at the Oakland Coliseum. The 22-year-old right-hander from California, who will win only four more games in his three-year career, is the 15th rookie to throw a no-hitter. (2)
- 1986 - Chicago Cubs rookie Greg Maddux* defeated the Philadelphia Phillies 8-3. The losing pitcher was his brother, Mike, also a rookie. It was the first time brothers faced each other as rookies. (1)
- 1996 - Although he is four shy of the necessary 502 plate appearances requirement, Tony Gwynn, hitting .353, is given the National League’s batting crown using the Oh-fer Clause, which has been in the rule book for 30 years but never invoked before now. The addition of four mythical hitless at-bats would leave the Padres outfielder with a .349 average, still five points better than the runner-up Ellis Burks of the Rockies. (2)
- 2001 - Astros starter Dave Mlicki gives up homers on three consecutive pitches to Fred McGriff, Rondell White and Todd Hundley. The back-to-back-to-back homers, which come in the 1st inning with two outs, enable the Cubs to beat Houston at Wrigley Field, 6-2. (2)
- 2016 - For the first time since the 2005 season, a major league game ends in a tie as rain stops the final scheduled contest of the year between the Cubs and Pirates in the sixth inning with the score at 1-1. The game will not be resumed as its result has no bearing on the postseason. The rules pertaining to ties were changed in 2007 making today’s situation the only one in which a tie game can now occur. (2)
Today in history:
- 1668 - English expedition to Hudson Bay led by Frenchman Médard Chouart Des Groseilliers arrives at Nemiscau (Rupert) River aboard the Nonsuch (beginning of Hudson Bay Company).
- 1829 - The first units of the London Metropolitan Police appear on the streets of the British capital, the city’s 1st modern police force.
- 1916 - American oil tycoon John D. Rockefeller becomes the world’s first billionaire.
- 1950 - Telephone Answering Machine created by Bell Laboratories.
- 1962 - JFK authorizes use of federal troops to integrate University of Mississippi.
- 1982 - Cyanide laced Tylenol capsules kills seven in Chicago.
- (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.