The Cubs post their 116th victory when they beat Pittsburgh at Exposition Park, 4-0. Chicago, who sets a major league mark for wins, completes the season with an astounding .763 winning percentage.
Reds right-hander Christy Mathewson faces Mordecai Brown of the Cubs in the career finale for each pitcher, marking the first time two future Hall of Famers have made their final appearance in the same game. Both Cooperstown-bound hurlers go the distance in Cincinnati's 10-8 victory at Chicago's Weeghman Park.
A smiling Calvin Coolidge, becoming the first U.S. President to attend a World Series opener, shakes hands with Bucky Harris and hands him a baseball that the Washington skipper places in Senator's starter Walter Johnson's glove. In the Griffith Stadium contest, the Giants edge the hometown team in 12 innings, 4-3.
Manager Stanley Harris, in the grandstand, presents President Coolidge with the baseball used to open the World Series. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress.
For the first time in the 50-year history of the franchise, the Cubs end the season in last place. The team, managed by Bill Killefer (33-42), Rabbit Maranville (23-30), and George Gibson (12-14), compiles a 68-86 record and finishes 27.5 games behind the first-place Pirates.
Player managers Ty Cobb and George Sisler face one another as mound opponents, marking the first time both sides use a position player to pitch in relief in the same game, an oddity not occurring again until 2012. In the season finale, the Georgia Peach throws a perfect final frame for the Tigers' 11-7 victory over the Browns in the Sportsman's Park contest, with 'Gorgeous George' facing only seven batters in his two scoreless innings.
After his skipper compiles a 350-264 (.570) record in four seasons at the helm, Senators owner Clark Griffith, hinting that he may name himself as the club's next skipper, announces Walter Johnson will not be returning to manage the team next season. Joe Cronin, who will lead the club to an American League pennant next year, replaces the Washington legend.
Joe DiMaggio becomes the first major leaguer to appear on a Time Magazine cover for a second time, featured in an article titled The Big Guy, which details the center fielder's injury woes during the final week of the American League pennant race. During his rookie season, the Yankee Clipper first appeared on the popular news magazine cover on July 13, 1936.
In a one-game playoff, the Indians, behind the five-hitter tossed by 28-year-old rookie southpaw Gene Bearden, beat the Red Sox for the AL flag, 8-3. The complete-game victory marks the young knuckleballer's 20th victory of the season.
In the World Series opener at Shibe Park, the Yankees beat the Phillies and Jim Konstanty, 1-0, thanks to Jerry Coleman's fourth-inning sac fly, plating Hank Bauer, who had doubled to open the frame. The Bronx Bombers' victory over the Whiz Kids marks the last time the Fall Classic begins without a person of color on either team's roster.
During Game 1, Giants outfielder Monte Irvin becomes the first player to steal home in a World Series contest since 1928. Twenty-three years ago, Bob Meusel of the Yankees swiped the dish in a 7-3 victory over the Cardinals during the sixth inning of Game 3.
In Game 1 of the World Series, the first all-black outfield in major league history appears when Monte Irvin, Willie Mays, and Hank Thompson take the field for the Giants at Yankee Stadium. In a curious move, Leo Durocher replaces the previously injured right fielder Don Mueller with Hank Thompson, a third baseman by trade, using veteran outfielder Bobby Thomson at the hot corner.
In the third inning of an eventual 11-7 victory in Game 5, Mickey Mantle blasts a Russ Meyer pitch into the upper deck of Ebbets Field, a rare occurrence for a left-handed batter, becoming the fourth player in World Series history to hit a grand slam. The Yankees slugger joins teammate Gil McDougald (1951), Elmer Smith (1920), and Tony Lazzeri (1936) in accomplishing the feat.
After over half a century of futility, the Dodgers finally win a World Championship, thanks to Johnny Podres' 2-0 shutout of the Yankees in the Bronx. The turning point of the historic contest proves to be an outstanding catch by defensive replacement Sandy Amoros in the sixth inning that robs Yogi Berra of an extra-base hit with two on, resulting in a rally-robbing double play.
With his 3-for-4 performance in Game 3, Hank Bauer establishes a major league record by collecting at least one hit in 17 consecutive World Series games. The Yankee outfielder set the mark playing in three straight Fall Classics from 1956 to 1958.
Fred Haney, wanting to spend more time with his family, resigns as the Braves' manager. During his three-and-a-half-year tenure in the Milwaukee dugout, the 64-year-old embattled skipper compiled a 341-231 (.596) record, resulting in two second-place finishes, two pennants, and a World Championship.
When Willie Mays scores on a surprise bunt by Jose Pagan in Game 1, Whitey Ford sees his World Series consecutive scoreless inning streak end at 33.2 innings. However, Clete Boyer's seventh-inning home run helps Ford win a record 10th and his final Fall Classic victory as the Yankees defeat the Giants, 6-2.
Thirty minutes after their 9-2 loss to Chicago on the last day of the season, the Giants fire manager Alvin Dark, rumored to be on the chopping block at the start of the season, and then name Herman Franks, a coach on the team, to be his successor. The controversial skipper complains about the number of black and Hispanic players on his team in a Newsday article printed in August, telling Stan Issacs, "they are just not able to perform up to the white player when it comes to mental alertness."
The Orioles defeat Minnesota in Game 2 of the ALCS, 1-0, with the lone run coming from a Mark Belanger single, two groundouts, and a bunt single by Paul Blair in the bottom of the 11th inning at Memorial Stadium. Dave McNally goes the distance in the longest complete-game shutout in postseason history.
The Mets beat the Braves, 9-5, in the first-ever National League Championship Series playoff game. The eventual World Champions will sweep Atlanta in the best-of-five-game series before confronting the Orioles in the Fall Classic.
At Montreal's Parc Jarry, the Mets end the 1972 campaign beating the Expos, 3-1. Although New York finishes ten games over .500, they will become the first club in baseball history to finish a season without any player collecting 100 hits.
The 17-1 thrashing of the Twins become a historic day for Willie Wilson. The Royals outfielder becomes the first big-league player credited with 700 at-bats in one season, sets the American League record for singles in a season with 184, and joins Garry Templeton, becoming the second switch-hitter in history to collect 100 hits from each side of the plate.
The Reds blank the Braves, 3-0, finishing with the best record in the National League strike-shortened season (66-42) but will not participate in the postseason because the Dodgers and Astros posted better records for the first half (pre-strike) and the second half (post-strike). The plan, instituted midseason by Giants executive Al Rosen to salvage the season, eliminates the Western Division team from the first-ever NLDS.
Thanks to Darryl Boston's misadventures in the Metrodome's center field, Greg Gagne hits two inside-the-park home runs in the Twins' 7-3 victory over the White Sox. The light-hitting Twins shortstop becomes the 18th modern major leaguer to accomplish this rare feat.
The Yankees sweep a doubleheader from the Red Sox at Fenway Park, 5-3 and 3-1. New York closer Dave Righetti saves both ends of the twin bill, finishing the season with 46 saves, breaking the major league record shared by Dan Quisenberry and Bruce Sutter.
Toronto drops a 1-0 decision to the Tigers to finish the campaign with seven consecutive losses, including three straight in the season-ending series at Tiger Stadium. The Blue Jay's defeat, which allows Detroit to clinch the American League East title, completes one of the greatest collapses in baseball history.
On the last day of the season at Arlington Stadium, Charlie Hough and the Rangers lose to the Mariners, 7-4. The Texas knuckleballer is the last pitcher to start 40 games in a season.
The Dodgers lose to the Astros, 3-0, ending the season with a 63-99 record, 35 games behind the division-leading Braves. Tom Lasorda's club is the first in franchise history to finish in last place since 1905, when the team was called the Superbas and played in Brooklyn's Washington Park.
At 22 years, 11 months, and 19 days old, Rangers slugger Juan Gonzalez becomes baseball's youngest home run champion. 'Juan Gone,' who went deep 43 times during the season, is 46 days younger than Joe DiMaggio, who won the crown playing with the Yankees in 1937.
At Jacobs Field, the Red Sox drop their twelfth consecutive postseason decision, losing 4-0 to the Indians in Game 2 of the ALCS. The dubious streak, which started with the 1986 Bill Buckner game and will be extended to 13 when Cleveland sweeps the series, surpasses the Phillies' dozen straight defeats that began with the 1915 World Series and ended in Game 1 of the 1977 NLCS.
After three consecutive second-place finishes, the Astros fire manager Terry Collins, whose first-place team collapsed down the stretch. The 47-year-old skipper leaves the position with the best winningest percentage in franchise history, compiling a 224-197 (.532) record during his three-year tenure with Houston.
On the last day of the season, Rey Ordonez extends the major league record to 100 errorless games at shortstop, handling 411 chances flawlessly during this span for the Mets. The New York infielder will add another game to the streak on Opening Day next season before committing an error the next day at the Tokyo Dome.
In a one-game playoff for the NL wild card, the Mets beat the Reds at Cinergy Field, 5-0. New York southpaw Al Leiter goes the distance, limiting Cincinnati to only two hits.
Barry Bonds ties Mark McGwire's single-season home run record established three years ago as he hits his 70th round-tripper. The historic homer, a shot to right-center at Enron Field, is given up in the ninth inning by Astro rookie hurler Wilfredo Rodriguez in a Giant 10-2 victory.
With his third-inning home run, Rickey Henderson breaks Ty Cobb's mark to become the leading run-scorer in baseball history. The 42-year-old Padres outfielder slides into home to punctuate scoring his record-breaking 2,246th run.
Alex Rodriguez, scoring the lone run in the Rangers' 16-1 loss to Seattle, hits his 52nd home run, becoming only the fourth major leaguer to hit 50 home runs and 200 hits in the same season. The 26-year-old shortstop joins Hall of Famers Babe Ruth (1921), Hack Wilson (1930), and Jimmie Foxx (1932) in accomplishing the rare feat.
The A's become the first team in postseason history to hit consecutive home runs to start a game. Leadoff man Ray Durham (an inside-the-park round-tripper) and Scott Hatteberg hit the back-to-back dingers off Rick Reed in the team's eventual 6-3 victory over the Twins in Game 3 of the ALDS at the Metrodome.
Commissioner Bud Selig apologizes to St. Louis fans for the late playoff start time for the Cardinal and Diamondback Game 1 of the NLDS and promises it will not happen again. The 10 p.m. CDT start was due to many playoff teams coming from the west and baseball's desire not to have two games occurring simultaneously.
The Cubs win their first postseason series victory since 1908, when the franchise won the World Series. In front of a Turner Field standing-room-only crowd, Chicago beat the Braves in Game 5 of the NLDS, 5-1.
At Pro Player Stadium, Jeff Conine's perfect peg to catcher Ivan Rodriguez, who holds onto the ball after a collision at home, advances the Marlins to the NLCS. The Florida outfielder's throw to the plate nails J.T. Snow trying to score on Jeffrey Hammonds' single for the final out of the team's 7-6 victory over the Giants in Game 4 of the NLDS.
The Red Sox avoid a 0-3 deficit in the ALDS when Trot Nixon's pinch-hit 11th-inning walk-off homer beats Oakland, 3-1. The Boston outfielder's accomplishment marks the fifth time in the postseason that a round-tripper ends a game and the first by a pinch-hitter since Kirk Gibson's historic homer off Dennis Eckersley to win Game 1 of the 1988 World Series.
Two-time National League Manager of the Year (1990 and 1992 Pirates) Jim Leyland is named to replace Alan Trammell, who was fired as the Tigers' manager yesterday. The sixty-year-old, who guided the Marlins to a World Championship eight seasons ago, has not managed since 1999 after resigning as the Rockies skipper.
With John Hart's resignation yesterday, the Rangers name his assistant, Jon Daniels, as the team's general manager. The 28-year-old, ten months younger than BoSox boss Theo Epstein, becomes the youngest GM in big-league history.
Citing the need for a different kind of communicator in the dugout, Jon Daniels fires veteran skipper Buck Showalter one year after becoming the youngest GM in big-league history. The Ranger manager compiled a 319-329 record during his four-year tenure in Texas.
At Shea Stadium, Russell Martin's double kills a promising two-on and none-out rally as both Dodgers runners become outs at home in the Mets' eventual 6-5 victory in Game 1 of the NLDS. Jeff Kent and J.D. Drew try to score, but the relay from right fielder Shawn Green to second baseman Jose Valentin to Paul Lo Duca allows the catcher to tag each runner during their headfirst slides into the plate.
The Dodgers complete a three-game NLDS sweep of Chicago with a 3-1 victory, winning their first postseason series since 1998. The stunning loss in the playoffs extends the World Series drought for the Cubs into another century.
In the team's 10-2 victory at Tampa Bay On the last day of the season, the Yankees break a franchise record, thanks to Alex Rodriguez's three-run blast in the ten-run sixth inning, by hitting their 243rd homer. In the same frame, A-Rod goes deep again, this time with the bases loaded, to extend the club's mark, and the third baseman sets a new American League record, collecting seven RBIs in one inning.
On the last day of the campaign, Miguel Tejada hits a fourth-inning double off Nelson Figueroa in the Astros' 4-0 loss in New York to finish the season with 46, the most in the National League. The Astros' shortstop topped the AL with 50 two-baggers playing for the Orioles in 2005, becoming the first player in baseball history to have led both leagues in doubles.
A day after the season ends, the last-place Pirates fire John Russell, who equaled a franchise record for most losses by a manager in three seasons, compiling a 186-299 record. The other Buc skipper with as many defeats in the same time frame was Fred Haney, posting a 163-299 record from 1953-55.
The Mets dismissed manager Jerry Manuel and general manager Omar Minaya a day after the team completed its fourth consecutive disappointing season. Assistant GM John Ricco will be the head of baseball operations on an interim basis until a new GM selects the team's next manager.
Major League Baseball approves a change in the ground rules for Tropicana Field, making a batted ball that rebounds off the A-and B-ring catwalks a dead ball, with the pitch not counting, instead of being in play as in the past. The Rays requested the change for implementation in the upcoming ALDS after Jason Kubel's two-out, ninth-inning pop-up hit off one of the catwalks, driving in the go-ahead run in Minnesota's eventual 8-6 victory over the home team.
On a day three managers lose their jobs, the Reds give their skipper, Dusty Baker, a two-year contract extension through 2014. Cincinnati is making its first playoff appearance in 15 years.
The Indians name Chris Antonetti as the team's new general manager, with former GM Mark Shapiro moving into his new position as team president. The transition has been developing over the past few years, with Antonetti gradually being given a more significant role in Cleveland's day-to-day operations, giving Shapiro more time to run the franchise's business.
Diamondbacks give interim manager Kirk Gibson the permanent job, agreeing to a two-year deal with a team option for 2013. After being hired midseason to replace A.J. Hinch, the former hard-nosed major leaguer compiled a 34-49 record for the last-place team.
A day after the regular season ends, the Red Sox fire Bobby Valentine, just ten months into his tenure as their manager. In their worst campaign since 1965, the team finishes last with a 69-93 record.
The Giants take six hours and 23 minutes to defeat Washington at Nationals Park, 2-1, making Game 2 of the NLDS the longest contest in postseason history. San Francisco scores the eventual winning run in the top of the 18th thanks to Brandon Belt's solo home run off Tanner Roark, hours after the team had sent the game into extra innings by scoring the tying run with two outs in the top of the ninth.
Clayton Kershaw strikes out Melvin Upton to end the third inning of LA's 6-3 victory over the Padres at Chavez Ravine, becoming the 34th pitcher to record 300 strikeouts in a season, joining Sandy Koufax, who accomplished the feat three times the 1960's, as the only the second Dodger to reach the mark. The 27-year-old southpaw is the first pitcher in 13 years to achieve the milestone since Diamondback teammates Curt Schilling (316) and Randy Johnson (334) surpassed the plateau in 2002.
Appearing in relief in the eighth inning, Marlins outfielder Ichiro Suzuki records three outs, allowing one run on two hits in the team's 7-2 season finale loss to the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. The 41-year-old Japanese native's 18-pitch performance features an 87-mph fastball and at least one slider.
MLB schedules all games to start simultaneously at 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time to add more drama to the regular season's final day. The scheduling, similar to the English Premier League's "Survival Sunday," also evens the playing field by limiting teams' ability to rest potential playoff starters based on the results of contests played earlier in the day.
In front of a full house, the team's 408th consecutive sellout, the Giants lose the season finale when the Rockies scored seven runs in the ninth in the team's 7-3 loss at AT&T Park. George Kontos, Cody Hall, and Yusmeiro Petit, who set a major league record as the 11th pitcher used by one team in a nine-inning game, could not contain Colorado's offensive outburst in the final frame of the campaign.
In Game 1 of the ALDS in the Bronx, the Twins drop a 10-4 decision to the Yankees, extending their postseason losing streak to a major league record 14 consecutive contests. Minnesota previously shared the dubious mark with the Red Sox, who lost 13 straight playoff encounters from 1986-1995, starting with the Bill Buckner game against the Mets at Shea Stadium.