This Day In Baseball April 9
Debuts, Milestones, No Hitters, Rule Changes, Events, Birthdays, Deaths, and more on This Day In Baseball.
Events for April 9
In the first game ever played at Fenway Park; the Red Sox beat Harvard, 2-0, in an abbreviated exhibition contest played on a cold and snowy afternoon in front of 3,000 hardy fans. Crimson third baseman and captain Dana Wingate, a sophomore from Winchester, Massachusetts, becomes the first batter in the Boston ballpark, taking the first pitch for ball one before being struck out on a fastball thrown by Casey Hageman.
After helping the team capture its third World Series title, Tris Speaker, declining their request to take a pay cut, is traded by the Red Sox to the Indians for Sam Jones, Fred Thomas, and $55,000. The Grey Eagle’s salary of $17,500 is deemed to be exorbitant by Boston, due to the future Hall of Fame outfielder’s batting average dropping to .322 during the previous season.
Pittsburgh’s one-sided pre-season victory over the defending World Champions notwithstanding, today’s main attraction is 21-year-old Mickey Mantle, as the Yankees’ young phenom becomes just the third batter in Forbes Field’s 44-year history—after Babe Ruth in 1935 and Teddy Beard in 1950—to clear the 89-foot-high right field roof.
Dr. Creighton Hale recommends Little League pitching mounds be moved back from home plate by 24 inches. The organization’s vice president believes a ball thrown by a youngster at 70 mph from 46 feet would give the batter about the same the amount of time to swing at a pitch, proportionately, as the major leaguers have.
At Washington, D.C.’s Griffith Stadium, the Orioles become the first major league team to turn a triple play on Opening Day. Vice-President Richard Nixon, who threw out the ceremonial first pitch substituting for President Eisenhower, sees the hometown Senators post a 9-2 victory over Baltimore, behind a solid seven-hit, complete game performance by Pedro Ramos.
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