This Day In Baseball February 5
Events for February 5
1983 – The Toronto Blue Jays acquire minor league first baseman Cecil Fielder from the Kansas City Royals for journeyman outfielder Leon Roberts. Although the Blue Jays won’t see the benefits, Fielder will become one of the American League’s top power hitters after a stint in the Japanese Central League, leading the AL in home runs in 1990 and 1991 with the Detroit Tigers.
1897 – Pitcher Charley Radbourn dies in Bloomington, Illinois, at age of 42. In an 11-season career, Radbourn played for the Providence Grays, Boston Beaneaters, Boston Reds and Cincinnati Reds, compiling a 309-195 record with 1830 strikeouts and a 2.67 ERA. He posted at least 20 wins in nine seasons, including 59 in 1884 and 48 a year before. Affectionately nicknamed “Old Hoss”, Radburn will be inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1939.
1919 – National League president John Heydler dismisses charges against Cincinnati Reds star Hal Chase, who had been accused of throwing games and betting against his team in collusion with gamblers. The charges had been brought forth by Reds manager Christy Mathewson and owner Garry Herrmann. Heydler rules that Chase’s poor play was attributable to “carelessness,” and not to gambling. Two weeks later, New York Giants manager John McGraw obtains Chase from Cincinnati in exchange for first baseman Walter Holke and catcher Bill Rariden.