During spring training play, A's first baseman Joe Hauser's kneecap appears to shatter spontaneously. The infielder's other knee will also break in a similar fashion in 1934.
The Phillies trade infielder Ralph LaPointe and give the Cardinals $30,000 to obtain first baseman Dick Sisler. The son of Hall of Famer George Sisler will hit .287 during his four-year tenure in Philadelphia and will play a pivotal role in the team's 1950 National League championship.
After throwing the first two pitches of the season, Don Drysdale finds himself and his team trailing the Reds, 2-0. The L.A. right-hander, after giving up back-to-back homers to Pete Rose and Bobby Tolan, settles down and the Dodgers come back to win the game, 3-2.
At Washington's RFK Stadium, Ted Williams makes his managerial debut in front of President Nixon and a crowd of 45,113, a city record for an opener. The Commander-in-Chief throws out the ceremonial first pitch prior to the Yankees' 8-4 defeat of the 'Splendid Splinter's' Senators.
Bill Singer becomes the first major league reliever to officially record for a save, a new stat which will be kept starting this season, in the Dodgers’ 3-2 win over Cincinnati in the season-opener at Crosley Field. The 'Singer Throwing Machine’ does not allow a hit, hurling three scoreless innings en route to saving Don Drysdale’s victory.
In front of 37,237 enthusiastic fans at County Stadium, the team formerly known as the Seattle Pilots plays their first game as the Brewers. Lew Krausse is routed by the Angels as Andy Messersmith four-hits Milwaukee, 12-0.
After eight consecutive Opening Day defeats, the Mets finally win the first game of the season by beating the Pirates at Forbes Field in 11 innings, 5-3. New York becomes the first team to have won a World Series (1969) before prevailing in a season debut.
The Indians set an Opening Day American League attendance mark. A crowd of 74,420 watches Gaylord Perry go the distance when the Tribe trims the Tigers at Cleveland Stadium, 2-1.
The Reds trade utility player Terry Crowley to the Braves in exchange for right-hander Mike Thompson, who will never throw another pitch in the major leagues. Crowley, who will be released by Atlanta after appearing in just seven games, will return to the Orioles, the team that drafted him, playing seven more seasons in Baltimore as a DH/1B, before finishing his career with Montreal.
In his first major league at-bat, Al Wood becomes the first player to pinch-hit a home run on Opening Day. The round-tripper contributes to the Blue Jays' 9-5 win over the White Sox, giving the team its first victory in franchise history.
After a lengthy snow delay on Opening Day at Exhibition Stadium, Doug Ault, acquired in the expansion draft, hits two home runs in his first two at-bats in a Blue Jay uniform. The first baseman's pair of round-trippers, the first two of only the 17 he will hit during his four-year big league career, helps Toronto beat Chicago, 9-5, giving the franchise a victory in the first game it plays in its history.
Gary Thomasson starts the game by walloping the first pitch in the Dodgers' opener for a home run off Don Sutton, who had apparently thrown a gopher ball. Unbeknownst to the Giants' leadoff hitter, the ball was to be taken for a pitch and handed to the home plate umpire to be sent to Cooperstown.
Frank Sinatra keeps his promise to Tommy Lasorda by singing the Star-Spangled Banner on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium. 'Old Blue Eyes' had told the team's new skipper he would perform the National Anthem if his friend ever became the L.A. manager.
Ken Forsch, who almost didn't make the start due to swelling in his right arm caused by an insect bite, holds the Braves hitless, throwing the earliest no-hitter in baseball history. The Astros hurler's no-no makes the Forsch brothers the first siblings to both accomplish the feat, with Bob, as a member of the Cardinals, throwing a no-hitter against the Phillies last season.
On NBC's nationally televised Game of the Week, Detroit right-hander Jack Morris throws a no-hitter, blanking the White Sox at Comiskey Park, 4-0. The 29 year-old becomes the first Tiger hurler to accomplish the feat since Jim Bunning held Boston hitless at Fenway Park in 1958.
Dwight Gooden gives up three hits and one run in five innings in his major league debut, earning the victory when the Mets beat Houston, 5-3. The 19 year-old rookie right-hander, anxious to get to the Astrodome before his start, arrives so early before his start that he had to jump a fence to gain entry into the closed ballpark.
Boston outfielder Dwight Evans becomes the first player to hit the first pitch of the season for a home run when he goes deep on Opening Day. Jack Morris throws the gopher ball, but gets the win when Detroit edges the Red Sox at Tiger Stadium, 6-5.
Extending his major league record, White Sox (2) hurler Tom Seaver makes his 16th Opening Day start. The 41 year-old future Hall of Fame right-hander has also pitched the first game of the season for the Mets (11) and Reds (3).
Rick Mahler blanks the Phillies, 6-0, for his third Opening Day shutout. The Braves' right-hander ties a National League record with his trio of whitewashes.
Chris Sabo, playing in just his second big league game, ties a major league record, handling eleven assists at third base in the Reds' 8-1 victory over the Cardinals at Riverfront Stadium. The Cincinnati freshman infielder will beat out Chicago's Mark Grace for Rookie of the Year honors this season.
The Phillies sweep the season’s opening series against Houston with a ten-inning 6-3 victory at the Astrodome. The comeback victory, which will become a trademark of the eventual National League champs, marks the first time the franchise has won its first three away games since 1915, when Pat Moran’s men won their first six games on the road, playing in Boston and New York.
The Brewers home opener has two lengthy delays as the ground crew needs to clear baseballs thrown by fans from the playing field. It will be the last time the team will give away souvenir baseballs as a promotion.
Bob Cranmer, chairman of the Allegheny County Commissioners, announces the Sixth Street Bridge, which joins downtown Pittsburgh to the North Side at Federal Street by crossing the Allegheny River, will now be known as the Roberto Clemente Bridge. During home games at PNC Park the 995-foot suspension bridge, built in 1928, will serve as a pedestrian walkway, allowing Pirates fans to enter the new ballpark directly from the span.
In 15 games, a record total of 57 home runs is hit in the major leagues - two more than the August 13, 1999 mark established in 17 games. The 36 American League homers set the record for a league in one day, surpassing the previous mark by six.
The Astros play a regular-season game outdoors in Houston for the first time since 1965 when the team opens Enron Field with a 4-1 loss to the Phillies. Philadelphia's cleanup hitter Scott Rolen hits the first home run in the new ballpark.
Berley W. Visgar is sentenced to 90 days in jail and is fined $1,000 by Circuit Judge Michael Brennan for jumping onto the back of Astros' outfielder Bill Spiers after going on to the field at County Stadium last season. Although the 23 year-old has no prior criminal record, the judge believes the harsh sentence will discourage other fans from similar actions in the future.
In a ceremony prior to the team's home opener, the Devil Rays retire Wade Boggs' uniform number 12. Although the former Red Sox and Yankees infielder spent only two years with Tampa Bay, he hit the first home run in franchise history and collected his 3,000-hit club with the team at Tropicana Field.
With the team exercising Pedro Martinez’s option for the 2004 season seven months before a November deadline, the Red Sox make the Dominican hurler the highest paid pitcher for a season in major league history. The 31 year-old three-time Cy Young winner will earn $17.5 million playing for Boston next year.
Adam LaRoche collects the first two hits of his career in one inning. En route to an 18-10 win over the Mets, the rookie first baseman singles and doubles during the Braves' thirty-three minute, 11-run fourth inning.
In the 7,000th game played in franchise history, the Mets beat Washington at Shea Stadium,10-5. The Amazins' have compiled a 3,314-3,678 record (.474) along with eight ties during their 42 years of existence.
Ninety-seven years after his grandfather, Boston mayor John 'Honey Fitz' Fitzgerald, threw out the first pitch at the first major league game played at Fenway Park, U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy also tosses the ceremonial first pitch for the Red Sox at a season opener. The sell-out crowd enthusiastically cheers the 77 year-old long-time Massachusetts law maker, who was diagnosed last spring with a malignant brain tumor, when he tosses the ball from in front of the mound to a nearby Jim Rice, a newly elected member of the Hall of Fame.
According to its annual report, Forbes Magazine estimates the value of the Yankees to be worth approximately $1.6 billion, nearly twice as much as any other major league franchise. The World Champs, who moved into a new ballpark last season, made $441 million in net revenue after adjustments were made for its payment to baseball’s revenue sharing program and the costs of financing its new stadium.
Octavio Dotel, playing for his 13th team, breaks a major league record he previously shared with Mike Morgan, Matt Stairs, and Ron Villone. The 39 year-old Tiger reliever, who throws 1.1 scoreless innings against Boston, has also appeared with the Mets, Astros, A's, Yankees, Royals, Braves, White Sox, Pirates, Dodgers, Rockies, Blue Jays, and Cardinals.