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This Day in Baseball History
August 18th

39 Fact(s) Found
1910 Rickwood Field, the first concrete-and-steel ballpark in the minor leagues, opens in Birmingham, with the hometown Barons scoring two runs in the bottom of the ninth in their exciting 3-2 walk-off victory over Montgomery. The Alabamian landmark, which will become the country's oldest surviving professional baseball park, is well attended by the citizens of the booming iron-and-steel town, often drawing standing-room-only crowds of over 10,000 fans in the first decade of its existence.

Aerial view looking west - Rickwood Field (1993)

1913 In the top of the ninth inning at the Baker Bowl, the Cubs stroke nine straight hits, including six singles, two doubles, and a home run, off reliever Erskine Mayer. Chicago's late offensive barrage produces six runs, helping the team coast to an easy 10-4 victory over the Phillies.

(Ed. Note - Many sites erroneously list this game as being played on August 19, with Grover Alexander giving up the big inning. -LP)

1915 Boston defeats the Cardinals in their debut at Braves Field, 3-1. The concrete and steel facility, which took only five months to construct, becomes the first ballpark to seat more than 40,000 fans.
1940 Jimmy Powers, the Sunday New York Daily News sports editor, causes a flap when he suggests the Yankees' poor play this season to "a mass polio epidemic" caused by Lou Gehrig. The former Yankee first baseman and his roommate, Bill Dickey, filed suit, resulting in the newspaper apologizing and retracting its story at the end of next month.
1948 The Indians' streak of not giving up a run is extended to 30 innings when Sam Zoldak tosses a nine-hit shutout against St. Louis. Cleveland right-fielder Allie Clark scores all of the Tribe's runs in the 3-0 victory played at Cleveland Stadium.
1951 Hank Borowy, giving up five hits and walking four batters, becomes the first pitcher in major league history to surrender nine runs without recording an out when he appears in relief in the Tigers' 20-9 loss to the Browns at Sportsman's Park. In 2014, the Detroit right-hander's dubious feat will be matched in an exhibition game when the nine batters White Sox starter Jose Quintana faces reach base and eventually score in the team's 16-6 loss to the A's at Camelback Ranch.
1956 In their 13-4 victory at Crosley Field, the Reds hit eight home runs (Bob Thurman [3], Ted Kluszewski [2], Frank Robinson [2], and Wally Post [1]) to tie a major league mark. The Braves added two more to set a National League mark for total homers for a nine-inning game.
1959 Longtime baseball executive Branch Rickey is named the president of the newly formed Continental League. The 77-year-old former Dodger general manager is an advisor to the Pittsburgh Pirates.
1960 In a Midwest League contest, Bob Sprout throws a seven-inning no-hitter, striking out 22 batters as the Decatur Commodores defeat the Waterloo Hawks, 3-0. The 18-year-old minor league southpaw will pitch in just one big-league game, appearing with the Angels in 1961.
1960 Lew Burdette pitches a no-hitter, beating Gene Conley and the Phillies at County Stadium, 1-0. The Braves right-hander hits Tony Gonzalez with a one-out, fifth-inning pitch, preventing perfection, but still faces the minimum 27 batters by getting Lee Walls to ground into a double play.
1962 After the umpiring crew asks Indians' starting pitcher Pedro Ramos to change his uniform, the right-hander complies by changing his shirt, then returns to the Memorial Stadium locker room for a different jersey and hat. The request, prompted by the ump's suspicion that the Cleveland right-hander may be doctoring the baseball, causes two delays in the game against Baltimore.
1965 Home plate umpire Chris Pelekoudas denies Braves outfielder Hank Aaron a homer calling him out after the ball lands on top of the pavilion at Sportsman's Park. Cardinal catcher Tim McCarver, jumping up and down, insisting the eventual home champion had stepped out of the batter's box, appears to influence the arbitrator's decision.
1967 A Jack Hamilton fastball shatters Tony Conigliaro's left cheekbone. The 22-year-old Red Sox slugger will miss the rest of 1967 and all next year, never coming close to the Hall of Fame potential displayed during his first three seasons.
1972 After playing 414 games and accumulating over 1500 career at-bats, Larry Bowa hits his first major league home run, an inside-the-park round-tripper at Veterans Stadium. It will take another two years before the 26-year-old shortstop, who will go deep only 15 times in his 16-year career, puts a ball over the fence for a homer.
1975 The Hall of Fame inducts Ralph Kiner after being named on 75.4% of the ballots cast by BBWAA. The slugger, who hit 369 home runs in his brief ten-year career and was best known for playing with Pirates, is joined by the Veterans Committee's selection of Earl Averill, Bucky Harris, Billy Herman, and Negro League player 'Judy' Johnson.
1982 In the franchise's second-longest game in terms of innings, the Cubs lose to the Dodgers, 2-1. The six-hour and 10-minute Wrigley Field contest played over two days, ends with Dusty Baker's sacrifice fly that plates Steve Sax and 21 innings to complete.

(Ed. Note: In 1927, the Cubs beat Boston 4-3 at Braves Field in a 22-inning marathon. -LP)

1982 At the Astrodome, Pete Rose becomes the all-time leader in plate appearances when he steps up to the plate for the 13,941st time. The Phillies' first baseman surpasses Cardinal legend Stan Musial, who had established the mark in 1963.
1989 With his third-inning single off Jim Clancy, Jerome Walton extends his consecutive-game hitting streak to 28 games in a 6-5 loss to Houston at the Astrodome. The 24-year-old freshman outfielder ties a modern Cubs record established by Ron Santo in 1966.
1989 Bucky Dent replaces Dallas Green (5th place, 56-65) as the Yankee manager. The turnover marks the 17th time the team has changed skippers during George Steinbrenner's 17-year tenure as the club's owner.
1989 The Orioles' Cal Ripken passes Steve Garvey, the National League leader, for the third-longest major league consecutive-game streak when he plays in his 1,208th straight contest, an 11-6 victory over the Blue Jays at Memorial Stadium. The 28-year-old shortstop trails only Everett Scott (1,307 games - Red Sox, 1916-25) and Lou Gehrig (2,130 games - Yankees, 1925-1939).
1995 Despite a Braves' rally in the ninth, right-handed reliever Tom Henke, issuing three walks and a hit, records his 300th career save when the Cardinals edge Atlanta at Busch Stadium, 4-3. The 37-year-old Kansas City native, earning his 25th save of the season, becomes the seventh pitcher in major league history to reach this milestone.
1996 After arriving at the ballpark feeling ill, Padres' third baseman Ken Caminiti, refusing to be taken out of the lineup, goes on to hit two home runs, driving in four runs in the team's 8–0 win over the Mets at Mexico's Estadio de Beisbol Monterrey. The eventual National League MVP, a food poisoning and dehydration victim, recovers when he receives two liters of fluids and eats a Snickers bar before the game starts.
1998 Braves right-hander Greg Maddux wins his 200th career game, beating the Giants at Turner Field, 8-4, in a contest where all of Atlanta's nine hits are doubles. The 33-year-old All-Star hurler will finish his 23-year Hall of Fame career with a 355-227 (.610) won-loss record.
2000 After beating out a potential double-play ball to prolong a five-run ninth-inning rally, which ties the game, Angel flycatcher Darin Erstad makes a 10th-inning game-saving catch and follows it with a game-winning homer in the 11th to beat the Yankees, 9-8.
2000 Tim Salmon becomes the franchise leader in home runs with his fourth-inning solo shot off Roger Clemens in the Angels' eventual 9-8 extra-inning victory over New York at Yankee Stadium. The Anaheim DH's 223rd career round-tripper surpasses the total of Brian Downing, who had established the Halo mark in 1990.

2002 In a pregame ceremony, Tommie Agee is inducted posthumously into the Mets Hall of Fame. The Mets' center fielder, best remembered for his two great catches in Game 3 of the 1969 World Series, played five seasons for the team, beginning in 1968.
2004 The Spokane Indians (Texas Rangers) edge the Tri-City Dust Devils (Colorado Rockies) 2-1 in 23 innings. The six-hour and 37-minute Northwest League game was scoreless for 19 innings and then suspended in a 1-1 tie in the 21st inning the previous night.
2006 Alfonso Soriano becomes the third player in big-league history to compile four seasons of 30 homers and 30 stolen bases. With his second-inning swipe of second base in a 6-4 victory over the Phillies, the Nationals outfielder joins Barry and Bobby Bonds in accomplishing the feat for the fourth time.
2006 At Fenway Park, the Yankees beat the Red Sox in the nightcap to complete a day-night doubleheader sweep. The 14-11 slugfest, in which the Al East Division rivals bang out 34 hits, takes 4 hours and 45 minutes to play, making it the longest nine-inning game in big-league history.
2006 Mike Lieberthal passes Red Dooin, who caught 1,124 games from 1902-14, to become the Phillies' all-time leader as a catcher. The former backstop, credited as the first major leaguer to wear shinguards (1906), tried but failed in 1914 as the team's player-manager to convince owner William Barker to buy three promising players from Baltimore's International League franchise, which included a pitcher named Babe Ruth.
2006 Jered Weaver, blanking the Mariners for seven innings at Angel Stadium, joins Whitey Ford (Yankees, 1950) to become only the second American League rookie to begin a career with nine straight victories as a starter. The 23-year-old Angel hurler must win his next four games to match the mark established by Hooks Wiltse, who started his freshman season in 1904 with 13 consecutive wins.
2006 Before the second game of a day-night doubleheader against the Yankees, reality TV show host and future U.S. president Donald Trump throws out the ceremonial first pitch at Fenway Park. During his four years in office, the 45th Commander-in-Chief will decline the Nationals' invitation to throw out the Opening Day CFP, a tradition every President has participated in since William Taft's toss in 1910, except for Jimmy Carter, who threw one before Game 7 of the 1979 World Series.
2007 Micah Owings, with two home runs, a double, and a single, compiles 11 total bases in the Diamondbacks' 12-6 victory over the Braves, the most for a hurler since Braves right-hander Jim Tobin had 12 with his three homers in 1942. In addition to driving in six runs and scoring four times, the Arizona rookie tosses seven innings of three-hit ball to win his sixth game of the season.

2010 The front-running Braves acquire slugger Derrek Lee from the Cubs for three minor league pitchers. As a ten-year veteran, who had played at least five years with the same team, the 34-year-old first baseman rejected a trade to the Angels last month because he thought LA had too much of a deficit to make up in the AL West race.
2011 Mike Jacobs becomes the first professional baseball player suspended for testing positive for human growth hormone. The 30-year-old Rockies minor league first baseman, a former Mets, Marlins, and Royals player, receives a 50-game suspension for using HGH.
2012 Adam Dunn becomes the 50th major leaguer to hit 400 career runs when he goes deep in the eighth inning with a two-run blast off Tim Collins in a White Sox loss to Kansas City at Kauffman Stadium. The 32-year-old Chicago first baseman joins Paul Konerko in reaching the milestone this season, making them the first teammates in baseball history to hit their 400th round-tripper in the same year playing for the same team.
2015 The Red Sox hire Dave Dombrowski, who was replaced as the president and general manager of the Tigers earlier this month, to run the organization's baseball operations. After leading Boston to the World Series two seasons ago, Ben Cherington declines to continue as the GM of the last-place team but will assist during the club's transition.
2017 Orioles' third baseman Manny Machado goes deep three times, including a walk-off grand slam off Keynan Middleton in the team's 9 -7 victory over the Angels. The 25-year-old infielder's trio of round-trippers accounts for seven RBIs and three runs in the Camden Yards contest.

2021 First baseman Freddie Freeman becomes the seventh player in franchise history to hit for the cycle and the first to do so more than once in a Braves' uniform when he connects for a two-run home run in the top of the sixth at Miami's loanDepot Park. The 2020 National League Most Valuable Player also doubled in the first inning, tripled in the fourth, and singled in the fifth in the team's 11-9 win over the Marlins.

39 Fact(s) Found