April 13, 1926, one of the greatest Opening Day pitchers’ duels ever occurs, 25,000 fans filled Griffith Stadium to see, 38-year-old Walter Johnson of the Washington Senators battle Eddie Rommel and the Philadelphia Athletics. Johnson the aging future Hall of Famer was playing in his second to last season. Johnson and Rommel matched goose eggs for 14 innings, in the 15th after Johnson retired the side in order for the 9th time, the Senators were able to get back to back hits from Bucky Harris and Goose Goslin, then Joe Harris singled to left and Harris scores the winning run.
The game will set the record for longest opening day contest until 2012, when the Blue Jays and Indians play 16 innings on April 5th. Johnson allowed just 6 hits and walked only 3 while striking out 9.
The ‘Big Train’, in his next-to-last season, will finish the campaign with a 15-16 record (.484) along with an ERA of 3.63 for the fourth-place club.