This Day In Baseball April 16
Debuts, Milestones, No Hitters, Rule Changes, Events, Birthdays, Deaths, and more on This Day In Baseball.
Events for April 16
On Opening Day at the Polo Grounds, Mel Ott of the New York Giants hits his 511th and final home run in the Giants’ 8 – 4 victory against the Philadelphia Phillies. Ott hits his homer off Phillies left-hander Oscar Judd. The next day Ott will injure his knee diving for a ball and play only occasionally thereafter.
The Mets’ new home, Shea Stadium, is christened with Dodgers Holy Water from the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn and Giants Holy Water from the Harlem River at the location where it flowed past the Polo Grounds. It is named in honor of William A. Shea, the man who brought National League baseball back to New York.
The Chicago Cubs set the mark for worst start in National League history, making three more errors as they extend their losing streak to 12 with a 4 – 0 loss to the Colorado Rockies. Chicago broke the modern NL record of 0-10 set by the 1988 Atlanta Braves and the overall record of 0-11 by the 1884 Detroit Wolverines.
Chuck Finley of the Cleveland Indians, who was already the only pitcher in major league history to strike out four batters in one inning twice, does it for the third time as he strikes out Tom Evans, Royce Clayton, Chad Curtis (who takes first base on a passed ball) and Rafael Palmeiro in the 3rd inning; Finley beats the Texas Rangers, 2 – 1, with the help of back-to-back 9th-inning home runs from Manny Ramirez and Jim Thome.
4/16/2004 – In the top of the seventh inning, Cubs manager Dusty Baker intended to place two new players in the lineup with a double switch but failed to tell Umpire C.B. Bucknor. When the Cubs batted in the bottom of the inning, shortstop Ramon Martinez came to the plate in the ninth spot in the order and doubled. The Reds protested that the Cubs were batting out of order. Pitcher Kent Mercker, the proper batter, was called out. Baker argued with the umpires but was told that the call stood. Yelling & screaming, he tossed his lineup card on the ground and was ejected by Bucknor. Baker threw his hat, walked away and returned; he tossed his hat again, stomped to the dugout and kicked some items in the on deck circle before finally leaving the field. The Cubs won in the bottom of the ninth, 11-10, when Sammy Sosa and Moises Alou hit back-to-back homers to end the game. When Baker arrived home that day, his son called him “Mad Dog.”
Manny Ramirez hits a two-run home run and a grand slam to knock in all of Boston’s runs in a 6 – 2 victory against Tampa Bay. Matt Clement wins in his Fenway Park debut. It is Ramirez’s 18th career grand slam, most among active players. The blast ties him for third on the all-time list with Willie McCovey and Robin Ventura, behind only Eddie Murray (19) and Lou Gehrig (23). It is Ramirez’s 40th career multi-homer game (38 two-homer games, two three-homer games).
Richard Orman of the Pioniers wins his 114th game in Hoofdklasse, setting the record for left-handers. Craig McGinnis had previously held the mark. Orman tosses 8 shutout innings against Sparta/Feyenoord in the win, with Dave Draijer getting the save. Orman has previously pitched in the Toronto Blue Jays farm system.
4/16/2006: Javy Lopez of the Orioles hit a home run to left center in the second inning of a game at Camden Yards as Darin Erstad attempted to catch the ball at the wall. The runner on first, Miguel Tejada, thinking the ball was caught, returned towards the bag and Lopez rounded first and passed Tejada. Lopez was called out and Tejada scored on the play, giving Lopez an RBI single over the wall. The Angels beat the Orioles, 9-3.
The Cleveland Indians spoil the opening of New Yankee Stadium with a 10 – 2 win over the New York Yankees. Jhonny Peralta hits a two-run double off Jose Veras to break a 1 – 1 tie, then Grady Sizemore delivers the KO with a grand slam off Damaso Marte. Jorge Posada is the first batter to homer in the Yankees’ new ballpark with a solo shot off winning pitcher Cliff Lee in the 5th. New York had won 16 of their final 17 home openers at the old Yankee Stadium.
Roy Halladay is acclimatizing well to the National League. He earns his third victory of the young season in an 8 – 6 Phillies win in wet conditions over the Florida Marlins. Working quickly, “Doc” allows only two runs in eight innings, but his bullpen makes things interesting as the Marlins collect five hits and four runs against David Herndon in the 9th. In the game, Florida’s Jorge Cantu’s record streak of games with a hit and RBI from the start of the season ends at 10, as he is unable to collect an RBI.
Giants CF Aaron Rowand suffers a fractured cheek and a mild concussion when hit by a pitch thrown by Vicente Padilla in the 5th inning of a game against the Dodgers. Rowand is taken to the hospital, and will be placed on the disabled list two days later. The Giants lose 10 – 8, as Todd Wellemeyer falls to Padilla.
2011 – The Mets are swept in a doubleheader for the second time in three days as they go down, 4 – 2 and 4 – 0, to the Atlanta Braves. In the second game, Jair Jurrjens throws seven shutout innings in his return from the disabled list, while Alex Gonzalez is the hero in the opener, hitting two of the Braves’ four solo homers in support of Derek Lowe’s pitching. The Mets have now lost seven in a row.
Kendrys Morales hits his first homer since breaking his ankle celebrating a walk-off grand slam on May 29, 2010. Morales missed the rest of 2010 and all of 2011 recovering from the injury. His three-run blast off Brandon McCarthy in the 1st comes in support of a strong performance by Jered Weaver, who tosses 6 2/3 scoreless innings and records his 1000th career strikeout in the game. Three relievers succeed Weaver to complete the Angels’ 6 – 0 combined shutout of the Athletics.
The Rockies battle the elements to sweep the Mets in a doubleheader at home. The opener is delayed by two hours as an 8-inch snowfall has to be removed from the field, with Colorado owner Dick Monfort pitching in by manning a shovel, and the day concludes when Jordan Pacheco singles home the winning run in the 10th inning of the second game, for a 9 – 8 win. The Rockies also win the opener, 8 – 4, as the games are played in frigid conditions and occasional snow flurries. Reporters quip that there are more snowmen than fans at Coors Field.
The Braves hit five solo homers to win their 10th straight game, 6 – 3, over Kansas City. Jason Heyward, Justin Upton and Dan Uggla all homer to put the Braves ahead in the 8th, following two earlier long balls by Juan Francisco. The final run is driven in by Chris Johnson after the barrage of dingers in the 8th. It is the Braves’ longest winning streak since 2000.
Pinar del Río wins the 2013-2014 Cuban Serie Nacional title, beating Matanzas in the 6th game of the finals, 9-6. Regular season MVP Yosvani Torres gets the win despite a mediocre outing (5 R in 5 2/3 IP), while shortstop Luis Alberto Valdés hits a grand slam in the 6th off Matanzas relief ace Félix Fuentes to put Pinar del Río ahead for good.
The Yankees sweep a doubleheader from the Cubs behind strong performances from two newcomers. In the opener, Masahiro Tanaka strikes out 10 and allows only two singles on bunts in 8 innings in a 3 – 0 win, and in the nitecap, Michael Pineda gives up four hits over 6 innings for a 2 – 0 win that completes the double blanking. It is the first time a team has two shutouts in one day since June 26, 1988.
DSS makes its debut in the Hoofdklasse, losing 10-1 to Kinheim. Tom Stuifbergen starts for Kinheim, ending a run of eight straight Opening Day starts by David Bergman (moving to a reliever-coach role this year), and gets the win over Rik Geestman. Dashenko Ricardo goes 4 for 6 with 3 runs and Sven van der Sanden drives in 3, while Mark Smit gets the first hit and first RBI for DSS.
The Cuban Serie Nacional finals witness history as a team rallies from a 3-0 deficit to tie it at 3 games apiece for the first time since postseason play began in 1986. Pinar del Ríoscores 5 in the first off game 1 victor Vladimir García on the way to a 7-3 win. Yosvani Torres gets the win, Liván Moinelo the save and Yordanis Alarcón hits a three-run homer for the historic comeback. Unfortunately, the clock strikes midnight on Cinderella and Ciego de Ávila takes game 7 tomorrow.
Cold, wind, snow and sleet continue to wreak havoc with the major league schedule, as three more postponements today bring the total to 24 since the start of the season. Boston’sannual Patriots Day late-morning game is a victim of the elements today, and even the Blue Jays, in spite of playing in a dome, have to re-schedule a game because falling ice from the nearby CN Tower damages the roof at the Rogers Centre, potentially endangering fans.