This Day In Baseball January 21
On January 21 on this day in baseball history, there were over 60 notable events. There were over 61 Birthdays and 31 Deaths all on January 21 on this Day In Baseball history.
1916 – The New York Yankees buy pitcher Nick Cullop from the Kansas City Packers (Federal League), infielder Joe Gedeon from the Salt Lake Bees (Pacific Coast League), and infielder Germany Schaefer from the Newark Peppers (FL). Schaefer will announce that he is changing his nickname to “Liberty” because of the war. He noticed that “sauerkraut” had been renamed “liberty cabbage”.
In an effort to fill the void of National League baseball in New York City, the Phillies agree to televise 78 games in the metropolitan area, which is without a Senior Circuit team for the first time since the league’s inception in 1876. The Pirates and Cardinals will also beam games into the Big Apple, but their contests will only feature the departed Dodgers and Giants as opponents.
The Commissioner’s office announces lifetime passes to any major or minor league regular season game will be given to the returning 52 Iranian hostages and the 14 others who were released earlier during the ordeal. In 1973, MLB made a similar gesture to the hundreds of prisoners of war who were returning from Vietnam.
1999 – Houston signs four players to minor league deals but all will see action with the Astros. Pitchers Brian Williams and Jeff McCurry come to terms along with outfielders Alex Diaz and Ryan Thompson. Williams, in his second tour as an Astro, plays the biggest role going 2-1 in 50 games out of the bullpen. For McCurry, it was a nice 29th birthday present, having been born in Tokyo, Japan on this day in 1970.
2002 – In a complicated three-team, eleven-player trade, the New York Mets send Benny Agbayani and Todd Zeile to the Colorado Rockies in exchange for Alex Ochoa, Ross Gload, Craig House and cash considerations. The third team in the deal, the Milwaukee Brewers, send Jeromy Burnitz, Jeff D’Amico, Lou Collier, Mike Sweeney, and cash to the Mets, in exchange for Lenny Harris, Glendon Rusch and Ochoa. The Mets have now replaced half of their 2001 roster.
2005 – Roger Clemens and the Houston Astros agree to an $18 million, one-year contract. Clemens, a seven-time Cy Young Award winner, agrees to a deal that makes him the highest-paid pitcher for the fifth time, following deals with the Boston Red Sox in 1989 ($2.5 million) and 1991 ($5.38 million); with the Toronto Blue Jays before the 1997 season, and with the New York Yankees in 2000 ($15.45 million).
The Orioles and Nick Markakis finalize a significant $66.1 million six-year deal, which covers the span the right fielder would have been eligible for arbitration and the first three after he would be eligible to file for free agency. The 25 year-old fly chaser, who had his best offensive season with the team and led the American League in outfield assists last season, was named the team’s most valuable player by the local media last season.
In an effort to increase attendance, Washington reduces individual ticket prices on 14,000 seats and does not raise prices on any of the 41,888 seats at Nationals Park. The club ranked a disappointing 13th place in attendance in the 16-team National League circuit despite the debut of a brand new stadium in the nation’s capital.
“Nine years ago you welcomed me into your community. You greeted me as a name and embraced me as a person, and I leave you now as a friend.” – ROCCO BALDELLI, thanking Tampa Bay fans in an open letter for their support during his time with the Rays. Rocco Baldelli, traded to the Red Sox in the offseason, takes out an ad in the St. Petersburg Times to show his appreciation of the support given to him by the Rays fans during his five years with the franchise. In an open letter, the outfielder writes,”I will always think of the Tampa Bay area as my second home, and I would like to thank everyone for accepting me and for making my time here as enjoyable as it was”.
The Rays sign two potentially useful players who had until now elicited little interest on the free agent market to one-year deals, OFs Manny Ramirez and Johnny Damon. The two former teammates with the 2004 World Champion Boston Red Sox will share the LF and DH jobs in Tampa. The Cardinals also sign a player, veteran utility infielder Nick Punto.
2013 – SS Miguel Tejada, trying to return to the big leagues after a year away from the diamond, commits a costly error in the bottom of the 11th inning of Game 4 of the Dominican League Finals, allowing Jesus Feliciano to score the winning run and give Escogido a 3 – 2 win over the Aguilas Cibaeñas. With the bases loaded, Tejada fields Mauro Gomez’s grounder cleanly, but throws the ball away to give Escogido a 3 games to 1 lead; Tejada had been his team’s best player until then, going 3 for 4 with a double.
The Nationals introduce Max Scherzer, the newest member of the team’s very solid pitching staff. The 29 year-old right-hander, who inked a seven-year, $210 million contract to hurl for Washington, joins Stephen Strasburg, Jordan Zimmermann, Doug Fister, and Gio Gonzalez, a fivesome many consider to be the best starting rotation in baseball history.
2019 – The Yankees get rid of an unwanted member of their pitching staff by sending veteran starter Sonny Gray to the Reds in return for minor league infielder Shed Long and a Compensation Round A pick in the 2019 amateur draft. They then turn around and trade Long to the Mariners for OF Josh Stowers. For their part, the Reds immediately sign Gray to a three-year contract extension worth $30.5 million.