King Kelly meets with Chicago White Stockings owner Albert Spalding for contract talks. Kelly, who won the National League batting championship for the pennant-winning White Stockings last season, wants the bonus of $375 that Spalding promised for good behavior last year. Spalding refuses to give him the bonus or to rescind the additional $225 withheld from Kelly’s salary as fines for drinking. Six days from now, Kelly will be sold to the Boston Beaneaters.
Phillies star infielder Napoleon Lajoie is rumored to have jumped to the new American League’s Philadelphia franchise. The National League’s leading hitter, clearly in violation of the reserve clause, does switch to the Junior Circuit, where he will win the Triple Crown, leading the league with a .426 batting average, 14 homers, and 125 RBIs.
1916 – The National League turns down a request from Brooklyn Robins owner Charles Ebbets, who had wanted to impose a limit of 2,000 seats that clubs can sell for 25 cents. The Boston Braves have 10,000 such seats, the St. Louis Cardinals 9,000, the Philadelphia Phillies 6,500, and the Cincinnati Reds 4,000.
1942 – At California’s Folsom prison, the annual game between major leaguers and the prison team is stopped when it is discovered that two prisoners have escaped. With the pros leading 24 – 5 at the end of seven innings, the game ends and guards go after the two lifers, who are found three hours later. The major leaguers include Ernie Lombardi, Tiny Bonham, Gus Suhr, Joe Marty, and Johnny Babich.
In Philadelphia, former A’s manager and owner Connie Mack, 93, dies of “old age and complications from his hip surgery.” The ‘Tall Tactician’ set records for major league wins (3,731) and losses (3,948), compiling a .486 managerial mark during his 54 years as a skipper, including his three seasons with the Pirates before the turn of the century.
The legendary Connie Mack dies at age 93. After managing Pittsburgh’s National League club from 1894 to 1896, the former catcher became a prominent figure in Ban Johnson’s Western League. A founder of the American League in 1901, Mack managed and owned the Philadelphia Athletics from 1901 to 1950, leading the team to five World Series titles and nine American League pennants. He won election to the Hall of Fame in 1937.
1972 – Josh Gibson and Buck Leonard are elected to the Hall of Fame through the Special Committee on the Negro Leagues. The two former stars, who led the Homestead Grays to nine straight league championships from 1937 to 1945, become the second and third players to be selected by the Committee, joining Satchel Paige, who was elected in 1971.
The longest-playing infield foursome is broken up when the Dodgers trade Davey Lopes straight up for A’s minor leaguer Lance Hudson, a middle infielder who will never appear in a major league game. The 36 year-old former LA second baseman had played with Steve Garvey, Ron Cey, and Bill Russell since 1974.
1982 – The Los Angeles Dodgers trade veteran second baseman Davey Lopes to the Oakland Athletics for minor leaguer Lance Hudson. The move, which opens a spot for rookie Steve Sax, breaks up the Dodgers’ infield, which had been intact since 1974. The other starting infielders, Steve Garvey (1B), Bill Russell (SS) and Ron Cey (3B) remain with the team.
1983 – One day after taking a job as director of sports promotions for the Claridge Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, Mickey Mantle is ordered to sever his ties with Major League Baseball by Commissioner Bowie Kuhn. Mantle joins fellow Hall of Famer Willie Mays as players banned from baseball by Kuhn for involvement with legalized gambling.
1984 – After losing Type A free agent Tom Underwood to the Orioles, Oakland grabs pitcher Tim Belcher from the Yankees as compensation. The number-one selection in the June 1983 draft, Belcher did not sign with Minnesota and was available in the January draft. The Yankees signed him on February 2nd, only to lose him because they had already submitted their list of 26 protected players, a blunder which will cost general manager Murray Cook his job.
After rejecting an earlier proposal by an 8-5 margin just a few hours ago, the District of Columbia Council reverses itself and approves a revised lease for a new Washington, D.C. ballpark. At the urging of Mayor Anthony A. Williams, the council reconvenes and votes 9-4 to approve the deal after attaching legislation capping the district’s total cost at a bit less than $611 million.
2006 – Emil Brown defeats the Kansas City Royals in salary arbitration and will get his request for $1,775,000 rather than the team’s offer of $1.4 million. Brown set career highs last season in batting average (.286), doubles (31), home runs (17) and RBI (86) for the Royals, who had the worst record in the major leagues at 56-106.
The Brewers exercise Ned Yost’s 2009 option, after the 53 year-old skipper led Milwaukee to its first winning season since 1992, finishing second in the NL Central with an 83-79 won-loss record. The skipper will never manage a game in his extended contracted year after he is dismissed with 12 games remaining this season, taking the blame for the under-achieving team’s swoon in August and September.
2008 – The Baltimore Orioles deal Erik Bedard to the Seattle Mariners for prospects Adam Jones, George Sherrill, Chris Tillman, Tony Butler and Kam Mickolio. Bedard was leading the American League in strikeouts before a rib injury cut his season short. Jones is a former first-round pick who hit 25 home runs in AAA at age 22. Tillman was Seattle’s minor league pitcher of the year in 2007.
2009 – The Perth Heat win their second straight Claxton Shield title, beating the New South Wales Patriots, 3 – 2, in the third game of the best-of-three finals. Daniel Schmidt allows 2 hits and no runs in 6 2/3 IP for Perth, which maintains a 2 – 0 lead until the 9th. Closer Brendan Wise blows it, though, giving up a two-run hit to Mitch Dening. Thankfully, his club rallies against Matthew Williams in the bottom of the inning to win it. Luke Hughes is named MVP of the finals.
The Naranjeros de Hermosillo defeat Mayagüez, 7 – 1, in the finals of the 2014 Caribbean Series to give the representative of the Mexican Pacific League its third title in the last four editions. OF Chris Roberson is named the series’ MVP after his 6th-inning homer off Kanekoa Texeira breaks a scoreless tie. Puerto Rican starter Joel Pineiro keeps the Mexicans from scoring through the first five innings, but the floodgates open after his departure, as C Sebastian Valle adds a grand slam later in the 6th to break the game open. Juan Delgadillo is the winner.
The Perth Heat win the 2013-2014 Australian Baseball League title, 2 games to 0, over the Canberra Cavalry. Brandon Tripp drives in Corey Adamson in the 1st and Allan de San Miguel drives in Matt Kennelly in the 6th. Jeremy Barnes homers in the bottom of the 7th for Canberra’s lone run in the 2 – 1 loss. Brian Baker, Cameron Lamb and Warwick Saupold combine on a three-hitter while Ethan Cole takes the loss. Joey Wong goes 2 for 2 to be named the finals MVP, after driving in the winner in Game 1.
A Cuban team wins the Caribbean Series for the first time since 1960 as Pinar del Río defeats Culiacan, 3 – 2 in the finals. Yulieski Gourriel’s 8th-inning homer is the key blow for the Cubans while Yosvani Torres gets the win, throwing perfect ball for the first four innings. Frederich Cepeda is the Caribbean Series MVP.
2016 – The Cuban national team is dealt a major blow as two of its most prominent stars, brothers Yulieski Gourriel and Lourdes Gourriel Jr., defect jointly at the end of the 2016 Caribbean Series held in the Dominican Republic. The two had been loaned to the Cuban Serie Nacional representative in the tournament, Ciego de Ávila, as “national reinforcements” and have been in the cross-hairs of major league scouts for years.
For the second straight year, the Criollos de Caguas win the Caribbean Series title, rallying for a 9 – 4 win over Aguilas Cibaenas in the final game of the tournament. Jonathan Morales hits a three-run homer in the 7th inning as part of a five-run barrage to put the Puerto Ricans ahead. The win is especially sweet as the Puerto Rican League had to shorten its season because of the damage caused by Hurricane Maria in September, and the island is still reeling from the after-effects of the devastating storm. It is the fifth Caribbean championship overall for the Criollos. Anthony García is named Caribbean Series MVP after hitting 3 home runs and scoring 8 runs and driving in 8 in the six games, with a 1.598 OPS.
News emerges that the Tampa Bay Rays have settled on a site in Ybor City, FL, one of Tampa, FL’s most historic neighborhoods, as the location for a new ballpark to replace the inadequate Tropicana Field. However, the team will fail to obtain the necessary authorizations and financing before construction starts, and the project will fall through within a few months.
2019 – In the 2019 Caribbean Series, the Charros de Jalisco defeat the Cardenales de Lara, 9 – 4, behind a three-run homer by Victor Mendoza. In the other game, Estrellas Orientales defeat Toros de Herrera, 5 – 3, inflicting their first defeat on the host Panamanians, as Wilkin Castillo has 3 hits and 4 RBIs.
1993 – A trio of arbitration cases are avoided when three starters are inked to similar three-year deals. Infielders Craig Biggio and Ken Caminiti, along with outfielder Steve Finley now represent a $32 million dollar investment to go with the $36 million spent on deals for pitchers Doug Drabek and Greg Swindell – a pay-out unlikely to have happened before the recent change in ownership.
1965 – A few Astros take the field for the first practice inside the new Astrodome. Rusty Staub is the only player to swat a ball over the fence as 250 members of the press look on. Pitchers are relieved to discover that breaking pitches still break indoors. Singer Anita Bryant is on hand to deliver a ceremonial first pitch.