<< Yesterday

This Day in Baseball History
October 3rd

59 Fact(s) Found
1909 Tigers outfielder Ty Cobb becomes the first player in baseball history to win the Triple Crown, leading the Junior Circuit in batting average, home runs, and RBIs. The 'Georgia Peach' accomplishes the feat by batting .377, driving in 107 runs, and hitting nine homers, all the inside-the-park variety for the American League champs.
1909 The Tigers end the season with 98 victories to extend their American League record for most wins after recently surpassing the 95 established by the 1904 Red Sox. Detroit boasted a pair of 20-game-winners, George Mullin (29) and Ed Willett (22), with Sam Crawford (.314) and Ty Cobb (.377) providing the majority of the offense for the champions of the American League.
1919 Cuban native Adolfo Luque becomes the first player from Latin America to appear in a World Series. In Game 3 of the Fall Classic, 'the Pride Of Havana' pitches a scoreless eighth inning for the Reds in a 3-0 loss to the White Sox at Comiskey Park.
1924 At Philadelphia's Baker Bowl, the Kansas City Monarchs of the Negro National League beat the Eastern Colored League's Hilldale Giants (PA), 6-2, in the opening game of the first Colored World Series. The ten-game event, where KC will capture the crown, winning five games to 4 with one tie, features games played in Chicago, Kansas City, and Baltimore.
1937 Johnny Allen's bid for a perfect season is spoiled when Hank Greenberg drives in the game's only run in the first inning, and Jake Wade throws a one-hitter against the Indians in the 1-0 loss to Detroit on the last day of the season at Navin Field. The 32-year-old right-hander from Lenoir (NC) will finish the season 15-1, with his .938 won-loss percentage the best in the major leagues.
1937 In the season finale, Hank Greenberg gets the lone ribbie when Detroit defeats the Indians, 1-0. The 26-year-old Tiger first baseman finishes the season with 183 RBIs, just one shy of Lou Gehrig's 1931 American League record.
1947 After issuing 11 walks in Game 4 of the Fall Classic, Bill Bevens comes within one out from pitching the first no-hitter in World Series history. The 30-year-old Yankee right-hander, in his final major league appearance, loses his claim to fame and the game when Cookie Lavagetto, pinch-hitting for Eddie Stanky, hits a two-out ninth-inning double, giving the Dodgers a 3-2 improbable victory.
1948 After taking his position in center field in the bottom of the eighth inning at Fenway Park, Joe DiMaggio, is removed from the game by Yankee manager Bucky Harris. As the superstar of their hated rivals limps off the field, the enthusiastic Red Sox crowd of 35,000 gives Joltin' Joe a lengthy and loud standing ovation, a gesture he will later refer to as one of the greatest thrills of his career.
1948 After going 0-for-4 on the last day of the campaign, Cardinal outfielder Stan Musial falls one home run shy of winning the Triple Crown, with Johnny Mize and Ralph Kiner of the Giants and Pirates, respectively, sharing the home run title with 40. The eventual MVP paced the National League with a .376 batting average and 132 RBIs for the second-place Redbirds, leading the Senior Circuit in 11 offensive categories.

(Ed. Note: Many accounts have Stan the Man recalling having hit a round-tripper in a game rained out earlier in the season that cost him the Triple Crown. Extensive research has not been able to verify the washed-out contest, although he did homer in the All-Star game. Our thanks to frequent contributor J. Feehan for enhancing this entry. - LP)

1951 In Game 3 of the National League playoff series at the Polo Grounds, Bobby Thomson's one-out three-run homer off Ralph Branca beats the Dodgers in the bottom of the ninth, 5-4, and the Giants win the pennant, the Giants win the pennant. The round-tripper, better known as the 'shot heard around the world’, becomes one of the famous home runs in baseball history.

1962 At Dodger Stadium, the Giants beat Los Angeles, 6-4, to take the rubber game of the best-of-three National League playoffs, clinching the National League pennant. LA shortstop Maury Wills sets a major league record for the most games played in a season, appearing in all of the team's 165 games.
1965 Cardinal right-hander Bob Gibson becomes a 20-game winner for the first time, going the distance, beating Houston at the Astrodome, 5-2. The future Hall of Famer will win twenty games four more times in the next five seasons.
1965 At Metropolitan Stadium, Angels' first baseman Vic Power (Pellot) ends his 12-year major league career going 1-for-5 with an RBI single in a 5-2 loss to the Twins. The .284 career hitter will be the last active player to have worn a Philadelphia A's uniform (1954).
1965 On the last day of the season, Giants' outfielder Willie Mays hits his 52nd home run to break the franchise record he established in 1955. The 'Say Reds hurler Billy McCool gives up hey Kid's' league-leading home run when San Francisco defeats Cincinnati at Candlestick Park, 6-3.
1966 Tigers GM James Campbell announces former Reds and Phillies skipper Mayo Smith will replace the late Chuck Dressen, the team's manager who died in August following a heart attack. Detroit coach Bob Swift fills the position on an interim basis, unable to complete the season after being diagnosed with lung cancer.
1968 In the third inning of Game 2 of his complete-game World Series victory over St. Louis, Tiger starting pitcher Mickey Lolich hits a solo homer off Nelson Briles. The Busch Stadium round-tripper will be the only home run the southpaw will hit during his 16-year big league career.
1970 Baltimore's Mike Cuellar becomes the first pitcher to homer in a league championship game. The right-hander's fourth-inning grand slam proves to be the difference in the Orioles' 10-6 ALCS Game 1 victory over Minnesota.
1972 Surpassing Honus Wagner, Roberto Clemente appears in his 2,433rd game for the most ever played in a Pirates uniform. Sadly, it will be the last regular-season game the Pittsburgh outfielder will play before dying in a plane crash during the off-season.
1974 Future Hall of Fame outfielder Frank Robinson becomes the first black skipper in major league history when he signs a $175,000 contract to manage and play for the Indians. During his 16 years at the helm for four franchises, the former superstar will compile a 1065-1176 (.475) record while piloting the Tribe, Giants, Orioles, and the Expos/Nationals.
1976 After being at the Dodger's helm for 23 years, Walter Alston's managerial career ends when the team drops a 3-2 decision to the Padres, finishing the campaign ten games behind the Reds. During his tenure in Brooklyn in 1954, the skipper known as Smokey to his players compiles a 2040-1613 (.523) record en route to capturing seven pennants and four World Series titles.

"Things have been like this a long time. They're changing gradually. They shouldn't be this way, but I can accept it." […] "I know what happened. It's been too good a season for me to say too much, but I know they let that ball fall on purpose." - Hal McRae, sharing his feelings about losing the batting title on the last day of the season.

On the last day of the season, Kansas City's George Brett and Hal McRae and Minnesota's Rod Carew are separated by .001 for the batting title. Brett, who goes 3-for-4, edges his Royals teammate (.333 vs. .332) for the American League crown with the deciding hit, a misplayed line drive inside-the-park home run, leading McRae to accuse Twins' manager Gene Mauch of racism for allegedly ordering his Steve Brye to let the ball drop and bounce to left-field corner.

(Ed. Note: Hal McRae's claim was unsubstantiated in a post-season investigation, and he eventually refused to offer any further comments on the controversial incident. - LP)

1976 At Milwaukee's County Stadium, Brewers' 42-year-old designated hitter Henry Aaron gets an infield single off Tiger hurler Dave Roberts in his last major league at-bat, driving in the 2,297th run of his career. Except for Minnie Minoso's appearance in three games with the White Sox as a 50-year-old in 1980, 'Hammerin' Hank' becomes the last major leaguer to have played in the Negro Leagues.

(Ed. Note: After Aaron beats out the infield single to the left side of the infield, Jim Gantner replaces him as a pinch-runner with two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning)

1982 On the last day of the season, the Brewers celebrate their American League East title-clinching victory on the field at Memorial Stadium after beating the Orioles, 10-2, to edge Baltimore by one game in the final standings. The 51,642 hometown fans, although disappointed by the results, stay after the game and give retiring manager Earl Weaver a heartfelt, tremendous 45-minute series of ovations for his 15-year tenure as the Birds' skipper.

1987 Benito Santiago's consecutive game-hitting streak ends at 34 when the backstop is hitless in three trips to the plate by Dodger hurler Orel Hershiser, who tosses a complete game in a 1-0 loss to the Padres. The stretch of straight games with a hit by the 23-year-old represents a new mark for rookies and catchers.
1990 George Brett pinch hits a fifth-inning RBI sac fly and then singles in the seventh to end the season, winning the batting title with a .329 average. The Royals' superstar is the only player to win three hitting crowns in three decades (1976-.333; 1980-.390).
1993 The Rockies become the fourth National League team and the only one this century not to shut out an opponent during the season. The other clubs to achieve this dubious distinction include the 1898 Brooklyn Bridegrooms, 1898 St. Louis Browns, 1898 Washington Senators, and the 1899 Cleveland Spiders.
1993 Despite winning 103 games, the Giants are eliminated from the Western Division race when the Dodgers derail their division dreams. Catcher Mike Piazza, who will be named the league's Rookie of the Year, hits two home runs in LA's 12-1 victory at Chavez Ravine.
1993 Eighty-three-year-old Mel Harder throws the ceremonial 'last' pitch at Cleveland Municipal Stadium. As a member of the 1932 Indian squad, he also had thrown the first pitch as the team's starting pitcher in the ballpark's inaugural game, a 1-0 defeat to Lefty Grove and the A's.
1995 The Yankees, 9-6 victors over the Mariners in the Bronx, and the Rockies dropping a 5-4 decision to the Braves in Colorado, become the first clubs to participate in the postseason not having been a first-place team. The two wild-card clubs will not advance further in the playoffs, losing their three-out-of-five divisional series.
1996 The Devil Rays and Tropicana Dole Beverages of North America, located near Bradenton, announce an agreement to rename the ThunderDome. The ballpark will become known as Tropicana Field with the city of St. Petersburg, receiving more than $13 million as part of the sweet deal.
1999 Cardinal first baseman Mark McGwire hits #65 and his final homer of the season, passing Ted Williams and Willie McCovey to move into the tenth spot on the all-time career home run list with 522 round-trippers.
1999 In the final regular-season game played at the Astrodome, Mike Hampton (22-4) beats the Dodgers, 9-4. The victory clinches the division title as the Astros finish one game ahead of the Reds in the National League Central.
2000 Against the Braves, Cardinal rookie starter Rick Ankiel sets a modern-day major league record by uncorking five wild pitches in the third inning of Game 1 of the NLDS. The left-hander joins Buffalo's Bert Cunningham, who accomplished the same feat in the first inning in an 1890 Players League contest.
2001 Orioles outfielders Tim Raines and Tim Raines Jr. become the second father-son combination to play for the same team on the major league level when Tim Sr. pinch-hits in a game in which Tim Jr. was playing center field. In 1990, Ken Griffey Sr. and Ken Griffey Jr. played in the same contest for the Mariners.
2001 Barry Bonds walks three times, breaking Babe Ruth's major league record established in 1923 of 170 walks. Astros' reliever Nelson Cruz gives up the historic base on balls in the sixth, and the Giants left fielder will finish the season with 177.
2004 On the last day of the season, Blue Jays television announcer John Cerutti is found dead in his SkyDome hotel room. The death of the 44-year-old Albany (NY) native, a former big-league pitcher, is due to natural causes, with foul play not being suspected.
2004 At the site of the franchise's first National League game in 1969, the Expos, scheduled to move to Washington, D.C. next season, play their last game in their 36-year history, losing to the Mets at Shea Stadium, 8-1. Their finale, which turns out to be the rubber match of the franchise series with New York, gives the Amazin's a 299-298 advantage in the 597 contests played since 1969.
2005 The ax begins to fall when two managers lose their jobs the day after the season ends. Skippers Jim Tracy (Dodgers/5 years/427-383) and Alan Trammell (Tigers/3 years/186-300) are the first to go.
2006 Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria hires his fourth manager since buying the team four years ago. Florida hires Braves' third-base coach Fred Gonzalez to replace first-year skipper Joe Girardi, who had a well-publicized feud with the owner during the season.
2007 After winning their tenth World Series championship last season, the Cardinals announce that senior vice president and general manager Walt Jocketty (1,117-968, .536) will no longer have a role with the team. The former GM, who will be replaced on an interim basis by his assistant John Mozeliak, watched the Redbirds make seven postseason appearances, winning two National League pennants and the 2006 World Series during his 13-year tenure with the club.
2007 The construction for the $250 million renovations of Kauffman Stadium, which includes reducing seating, adding an outfield concourse, a team hall of fame and conference center, and a new HD scoreboard, begins with a ceremonial groundbreaking inside the ballpark. The improvements, scheduled to be completed by Opening Day in 2009, will keep the Royals in Kansas City until 2030, a 15-year extension of their current deal.
2008 Jerry Manuel, who replaced Willie Randolph in June, signs a two-year deal to manage the Mets. The likable 54-year-old skipper, who compiled a 55-38 record in his interim role, built a three-and-a-half game division lead over Philadelphia in September but, like his predecessor, could not stop the team from collapsing at the end of the season.
2009 Needing only a win or a Colorado loss for the past week, the Dodgers finally clinch the National League West title with a 5-0 victory over the wild-card Rockies. The title marks Joe Torre's 14th consecutive season in the postseason, having won thirteen previous divisional titles, ten with the Yankees, one with the Braves, and now his second with LA.
2010 The Giants return to the playoffs for the first time in six years when they beat the Padres on the last day of the season. After losing the first two games of the weekend series to San Diego, San Francisco avoids ending the season tied with their West Division foe with a 3-0 victory at AT&T Park.
2010 Entering the final day of the season tied with the Yankees, the Rays win their second AL East crown when their rivals lose to Boston. Although the title is not in jeopardy, even with a loss because of their overall record against New York this season, Tampa Bay rallies for a 3-2 victory over Kansas City in 12 innings, taking the division by a game.

2010 With an 8-7 victory over the Phillies and a San Diego loss to San Francisco later in the day, the Braves reach the postseason for the first time since 2005. Atlanta had won 14 straight division titles under skipper Bobby Cox, who announced his retirement at the end of the season, but this is the first time the team has won the National League Wild Card.
2010 Josh Hamilton finished the regular season with a .359 average, the best in franchise history, to become the third Ranger player to win an American League batting crown. The Texas outfielder joins Julio Franco, who hit .341 in 1991, and Michael Young, who led the Junior Circuit in 2005 with a batting average of .331.
2010 According to Ken Macha, he will become the first managerial casualty in the offseason after hearing that the Brewers have decided not to pick up the option on his contract for 2011. The 60-year-old skipper, who reached the playoffs with the team two seasons ago as the NL Wild Card team, will be informed tomorrow by Doug Melvin, Milwaukee's general manager.
2010 The Pirates, with their 5-2 loss in Miami, finish the season with a 17-64 record on the road. The Bucs' dismal away-from-home performance equals the 1963 Mets' infamous mark for a 162-game season.
2012 Adam Dunn, having struck out 222 times, doesn't play in the team's finale to avoid the dubious distinction of breaking the major league mark for strikeouts in a season. The White Sox All-Star finishes with one less whiff than Mark Reynolds' record, established by the first baseman in 2009 when he played for the Diamondbacks.
2012 In the final game of the season with the AL West title on the line, Ranger's center fielder Josh Hamilton's fourth-inning error opens the floodgates that allow the A's to erase a five-run deficit when they score six times en route to their 12-5 victory at the Oakland Coliseum. The Texas loss puts the team into the new one-game AL Wild Card contest against Baltimore.
2012 The National League expansion team established in 1962, the Astros play their final game in the Senior Circuit, a 5-4 loss to Cubs, setting a franchise record for defeats in a season, finishing with 107, one more last year. Houston, who will play in the AL West next season, becomes the first team to drop 106 or more decisions in consecutive campaigns since the 1964-65 Mets.
2012 After getting off to a slow start in the regular-season finale against Philadelphia, Teddy Roosevelt finally beats George, Abe, and Tom to the finish line, winning the Presidents' Race for the first time since the popular race debuted at RFK Stadium in 2006. The mascot's first victory in over 500 tries becomes assured when a green furry creature resembling a phony Phillie Phanatic waylays the other three presidential contenders in right field.

2012 Miguel Cabrera clinches the AL Triple Crown, becoming the first player since 1967 when Carl Yastrzemski accomplished the feat with Boston. The Tigers' third baseman and eventual MVP led the circuit in average (.330), home runs (44), and RBIs (139), playing with the American League champs.
2012 Fernando Rodney extends his franchise record to 48 saves when he is brought in to face Jim Thome and gets the DH to hit a fly ball for the final out in the Rays' 4-1 victory over Baltimore at Tropicana Field. Allowing only five earned runs over 74.2 innings, the right-handed closer improves his single-season record for the lowest ERA (0.60) by a reliever in baseball history, bettering Dennis Eckersley's 0.61 mark established in 1990.
2013 Alex Rodriguez announces he has filed a lawsuit in the New York State Supreme Court, accusing Major League Baseball and Commissioner Bud Selig of pursuing "vigilante justice" as part of a "witch hunt" to "destroy" his reputation and career. On August 5, the MLB gave the Yankees star a 211-game suspension for allegedly violating baseball's drug agreement.
2015 In the nightcap of a Citi Field twin bill, Max Scherzer throws his second no-hitter of the season when the Nationals beat the first-place Mets, 2-0. The 31-year-old right-hander becomes the fifth pitcher to hurl two no-hitters in the same regular season, joining Nolan Ryan (1973 Angel), Virgil Trucks (1952 Tigers), Allie Reynolds (1951 Yankees), and Johnny Vander Meer (1938 Reds).

(Ed. Note: Max Scherzer strikes out 17 batters in his gem, a major league record for a no-hitter. -LP)

2018 The Orioles decide not to renew the contracts of executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette and manager Buck Showalter, who compiled a 669-684 record (.494) during his nearly nine-year tenure with the Birds that included three playoff appearances. The sixty-year-old Duquette, the Red Sox GM from 1994-2002, spent seven seasons in Baltimore's front office after a nine-year absence from Major League Baseball.
2020 The Padres win a playoff series for the first time in 22 years when Craig Stammen and eight relievers combine to throw a four-hitter to blank the Cardinals, 4-0, in the deciding Game 3 of the National League Wild Card Series. San Diego's last postseason success occurred in 1998 when the team beat the Braves to clinch the NL flag before facing the Yankees in the Fall Classic.

59 Fact(s) Found