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This Day in Baseball History
April 15th

42 Fact(s) Found
1876 The Alleghenys bring professional baseball to Allegheny, a municipality that will be annexed into Pittsburgh in 1907, when they defeat the Xanthas at Union Park, 7-3. In February, the team, losing its bid to become part of the newly established National League, plays as an independent club this year before joining the minor league International Association next season, competing in the circuit for two campaigns until it disbands in 1878.
1909 On Opening Day, 26-year-old Giants starter Red Ames keep the Superbas hitless until one out in the 10th inning when second baseman Whitey Alpermann doubles to left-center. The Polo Grounds contest, featuring Brooklyn's Kaiser Wilhelm tossing a complete game, goes thirteen frames, with the New York right-hander dropping a 3-0 decision to start the season.
1911 At the age of 24, Grover Cleveland Alexander makes his major league debut, losing a 5-4 decision to the Rustlers on an unearned run in the tenth inning at Boston's South End Grounds. The Phillies rookie, who will become known as 'Old Pete,' will post a 28-13 (.683) record, including seven shutouts and 31 complete games.
1915 After being called the Naps since 1903, Cleveland's American League ballclub plays its first game known as the Indians, a moniker selected from a contest to re-name the team run by a local newspaper. The franchise's former name, which honored their once-popular player-manager Nap Lajoie, needed to be changed when the 40-year-old second baseman was sold back to A's after feuding with the team's current skipper, Joe Birmingham.
1915 In his first start of the season, the Giants' southpaw Rube Marquand no-hits the Brooklyn Robins, the team that will select him off waivers at the end of August. In his 2-0 complete-game victory, the 28-year-old faces 30 batters, striking out two and walking two in the 85-minute contest at the Polo Grounds.
1921 At Redland Field, Pirates' right-hander Chief Yellow Horse makes his major league debut against the Reds. The Pittsburgh hurler, a member of a North American Plains Indian tribe called the Pawnees, is believed by many baseball historians to be the first full-blooded American Indian to play in the big leagues.
1930 On Opening Day, Phillies' southpaw Les Sweetland throws a three-hitter at Ebbets Field. The 28-year-old southpaw doubles and scores the lone run in the eighth inning of his 1-0 complete-game victory over Brooklyn.
1933 In his major league debut, Tigers rookie Schoolboy Rowe tosses a six-hitter, blanking the White Sox, 3-0. During his 15-year career, also playing with the Dodgers and Phillies, Lynwood will compile a 158-101 record, posting an ERA of 3.87.
1942 At Sportsman's Park in St. Louis, Hiram 'Hi' Bithorn becomes the first Puerto Rican to play major league baseball. The Cubs' right-hander from Santurce makes a relief appearance, allowing no runs or hits during his two innings of work in Chicago's 4-2 loss to the Redbirds.
1947 A year before President Truman desegregated the military, Jackie Robinson debuts for the Dodgers, becoming the first black player to participate in a major league game this century. In front of 25,623 Ebbets Field fans, the 28-year-old first baseman is hitless in three at-bats but scores a run in the 5-3 Opening Day victory over the Braves.

1947 In his National League debut, Hank Greenberg has the lone RBI in the Pirates' 1-0 win when his sixth-inning double off Cubs right-hander Hank Borowy plates Billy Cox from second base in the Forbes Field contest. Pittsburgh bought the slugging first baseman from the Tigers in the off-season for $75,000.
1954 In front of 46,354 fans, big-league baseball returns to Baltimore after a 51-year absence when the Orioles beat Chicago in the first game played in Memorial Stadium, 3-1. A Baltimore ownership group, including Clarence Mills, Jim Keelty, Jerry Hoffberger, and Zanvyl Krieger, bought the former St. Louis Browns and brought the franchise to the Charm City.
1957 Before the Senators' 7-6 loss to Baltimore in 11 innings at Griffith Stadium, President Dwight Eisenhower throws the traditional ceremonial first pitch of the season. The horsehide Ike tosses is billed as the 10th millionth Spalding baseball used in a major league game.

1958 On Opening Day, the transplanted New York Giants and Brooklyn Dodgers play the first major league game on the West Coast. The California contest sees Ruben Gomez blanking Los Angeles and Don Drysdale at San Francisco's Seals Stadium, 8-0.
1959 Cardinal right-hander Bob Gibson makes his major league debut at LA Memorial Coliseum, tossing the final two innings in a 5-0 loss to the Dodgers. The 23-year-old rookie becomes the first future Hall of Fame hurler to give up a home run to the first batter he faces in the major leagues when third baseman Jim Baxes takes him deep in the seventh inning.
1962 With the Mets ahead 2-0 in the fifth game of their winless existence, snow begins to fall bottom of the fourth at the Polo Grounds. The umps call the game in the next frame before the Pirates complete their needed at-bats to make it an official contest, thus prolonging the expansion team's losing streak, eventually dropping their first nine decisions.
1967 At the age of 18, Gary Nolan makes his major league debut, striking out the side in the first frame en route to his first career victory when the Reds beat Houston at Crosley Field, 7-3. The hard-throwing teenager, who will give up six hits and three runs in 6.1 innings in his first outing, will be the runner-up to Tom Seaver and Dick Hughes for the Rookie of the Year honors this season.
1968 The Astros defeat the Mets in 24 innings, 1-0, making it the longest scoreless game in major league history. The six-hour and six-minute contest, where each team had 79 at-bats and 11 hits, ends when Bob Aspromonte's grounder goes through the legs of shortstop Al Weis, scoring Norm Miller from third base with one out.
1972 On Opening Day in Oakland, A's outfielder Reggie Jackson becomes the first player in fifty-eight years to wear a mustache during the regular season. The last time facial hair appeared in a major league game was in 1914 when Wally Schang had hair above his lip catching for Philadelphia Athletics.

Amazon 1972 Reggie Jackson Card (Topps #435)

1976 In the debut of the 'new' Yankee Stadium, 52,613 fans watch the Bronx Bombers shell Minnesota on Opening Day, 11-4. Bob Shawkey, the winner of the 1923 Stadium opener, throws out the ceremonial first pitch in the ballpark that has been completely rebuilt from top to bottom, replacing the fences, the seats, the roof, and the original grandstand.
1983 With two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, Jerry Hairston's clean pinch-hit single to center field spoils Milt Wilcox's bid for a perfect game. The 32-year-old Tigers right-hander retires the next batter, settling for a one-hit 6-0 victory over the White Sox at Comiskey Park.
1985 In a 2-1 loss to the Cubs at Wrigley Field, Mike Schmidt plays in his 1,795th game wearing a Phillies uniform, breaking Richie Ashburn's franchise record. The first-ballot Hall of Famer will extend the streak to 2,404 contests before retiring in 1989.
1987 🇵🇷 Juan Nieves becomes the first Brewer to toss a no-hitter, walking five batters and striking out seven en route to a 7-0 victory over the Orioles at Memorial Stadium. The 22-year-old Santurce native's no-no makes him the first Puerto Rican and second-youngest major leaguer to accomplish the feat.
1990 ESPN's Sunday Night Baseball makes its debut, with Jon Miller and Joe Morgan behind the microphones, a broadcasting team that will remain in the booth for the next 21 seasons. The early stages of the sports network's coverage on Sunday evenings call for every ballpark to host a game, assuring each team at least one appearance on national television throughout the season.
1994 With only 115 fans in attendance on a cold and rainy night at Pohlman Field, Kelly Wunsch becomes the third player and first starting pitcher to strike out five batters in one inning in professional baseball. The Beloit Brewer hurler, Milwaukee's first-round pick (26th overall) of the 1993 amateur draft, makes this possible when two of those victims reached first base on wild pitches during a 7-3 loss to Springfield (IL) of the Midwest League.
1997 At Shea Stadium, with President Clinton and Rachel Robinson in attendance, Commissioner Bud Selig announces Jackie Robinson's No. 42 will be retired throughout Major League Baseball, an unprecedented tribute to the player who broke the color barrier fifty years ago on this date. There are presently 13 active players still wearing the number who will be allowed to keep it, including Mariano Rivera, who in 2013 will become the last player to don the digits.
2000 Orioles infielder Cal Ripken, in the 2,800th game of his career, lines a base hit to center off the Twins' Hector Carrasco, becoming the 24th player to reach the 3000th hit milestone. The single also makes the 'Iron Man' only the seventh player to get 3,000 hits and 400 home runs in major league history.
2001 A swarm of bees nesting in the Coors Field's right-field auxiliary scoreboard makes their presence known when Todd Hollandsworth steps into the batter's box to start the bottom of the fourth frame. After a nine-minute delay, the game continues without incident to the players, fans, or the bees, with the Rockies' outfielder getting the crowd buzzing by hitting three home runs following the stoppage of play, including a three-run walk-off round-tripper in the tenth inning of Colorado's 10-7 victory over Arizona.
2004 Major league baseball begins the tradition of Jackie Robinson Day, an annual celebration commemorating the day in 1947 when the Dodger infielder broke the color line. Ceremonies occur across the country to honor the ground-breaking historical event, including baseball commissioner Bud Selig and Jackie's widow Rachel Robinson attending the Shea Stadium's festivities.
2004 In the Astros' 6-2 loss to the Brewers at Minute Maid Park, Brandon Backe strikes out the three batters he faces in the eighth inning on nine pitches. The 26-year-old right-handed reliever retires Bill Hall and Scott Podsednik looking with Craig Counsell swinging at a third strike to end the frame.

2005 Right-hander Ben Sheets, who agreed to a one-year deal worth $6 million during the offseason to avoid salary arbitration, signs a $38.5 million, four-year contract to stay with Milwaukee. The contract is the richest in the history of the Brewers.
2005 The Dodgers, to commemorate the 58th anniversary of Jackie Robinson's first game in the big leagues, wear replicas of the old road uniforms worn by the 1947 team, which played in Brooklyn. Right-hander Derek Lowe throws a three-hitter, blanking the Padres in San Diego, 4-0.
2005 In the first major league game in Washington, D.C., since September 30th, 1971, the Nationals beat Arizona at RFK Stadium, 5-3. President George W. Bush throws out the ceremonial first pitch after receiving the ball from Joe Grzenda, the former Washington reliever who threw the final pitch before the new Senators moved to Texas.

2005 A Fenway fan is ejected from the game after taking what appeared to be a swipe at Gary Sheffield as the Yankee outfielder fields a ball hit by Jason Varitek. The right fielder's response, which includes shoving the fan, making a fist, and exchanging words, will be investigated by major league baseball.
2007 In honor of the 60th anniversary of Jackie Robinson's debut, Ken Griffey, Jr. wears the Dodger Hall of Fame infielder's retired uniform #42 after getting permission from Commissioner Bud Selig, who gives all major leaguers the option to wear the number individually. In 2009, all uniformed personnel will start wearing #42 every year on April 15th, the date designated annually as Jackie Robinson Day.
2007 The Indians become the first team in almost 55 years to notch a victory, getting their only hit in the team's first at-bat when Grady Sizemore doubles, leading off the first inning in Tribe's eventual 2-1 win over Chicago at Jacobs Field. The Tribe won with just one hit or less in 1992, posting a 2-1 victory in a no-hitter thrown by Red Sox right-hander Matt Young.
2007 To honor Jackie Robinson, major-league players, including Yankee shortstop Derek Jeter and Braves outfielder Andruw Jones, wear the Dodger immortal's uniform No. 42 on the 60th anniversary of his historic breaking the color barrier in baseball. In the Cardinals and Brewers contest at Busch Stadium, every player and coach on both teams dons Jackie's revered number.

Amazon Jackie Robinson Brooklyn Dodgers #42 Youth Home Jersey

2009 Texas infielder Ian Kinsler, having already collected a single, double, and home run, admits he was trying for a triple when he batted in the sixth inning of Baltimore's 19-6 rout. The Rangers' second baseman gets his three-bagger en route to a 6-for-6 cycle performance.
2010 Jorge Cantu establishes a major league record when he gets at least one hit and drives in one or more runs during the season's first ten games. The Marlins' infielder start also proves to be the longest streak at any point of the campaign.
2011 The Rangers tie an American League mark shared with 15 teams by turning six double plays in a nine-inning game, including a record-tying five DPs by Elvis Andrus for the most by a shortstop, in the team's 5-3 victory at Yankee Stadium. The first six batters in the Bronx Bombers' lineup, Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira, Robinson Cano, Derek Jeter, Andruw Jones, and Nick Swisher, bounce into Texas twin killings.
2011 With a 7-6 defeat to Toronto at Fenway Park, the Red Sox lose their tenth game of the new campaign, making their 2-10 record the worst start in franchise history. Despite its record-setting first dozen contests, Boston will still be in contention for a playoff spot until the last day of the season.
2022 Angel manager Joe Maddon orders reliever Austin Warren to walk Corey Seager intentionally with the bases loaded, scoring Charlie Culberson and followed by Mitch Garver's sacrifice. The last time a deliberate free pass that scored in run occurred was when Maddon, then the Rays' skipper, gave Texas slugger Josh Hamilton first base with the bases full in 2008.

42 Fact(s) Found