This Day In Baseball July 11
On July 11, 1985, Nolan Ryan of the Houston Astros becomes the first pitcher in history to record 4,000 strikeouts. Ryan notches the milestone dismissing New York Mets outfielder Danny Heep with 3 pitches in the sixth inning. On
July 11, 1968, the Baltimore Orioles name future Hall of Famer Earl Weaver their manager. Weaver, a lifetime minor league player had been serving as the team’s first base coach, and replaced the fired Hank Bauer. Under Weaver’s managerial philosophy of “”Double-plays and the Three Run Homer” the 1970 Orioles would be World Champions. In addition to the 1970 World Series, Weaver’s Orioles would win 100 plus games 5 times, four pennants, and six division titles.
On July 11, 1914, “The Babe”, George Herman Ruth makes his major league debut with the Boston Red Sox. Striking out in his first at-bat, Ruth would have to settle for a no-decision as the starting pitcher, after getting pulled for a pinch-hitter in the seventh. The Red Sox would win the game 4-3.
On July 11, 1950, network television broadcasts an All-Star Game for the first time in history. In the first-ever extra-inning All-Star Game, the NL defeats the AL, 4-3. St. Louis Cardinals star Red Schoendienst wins the game with a home run in the 14th inning against Ted Gray.
On July 11, 1961, San Francisco Giants pitcher Stu Miller is literally blown off the mound during the All-Star Game at Candlestick Park. In the ninth inning, high winds cause the 165-pound Miller to lose his balance. Umpires call a balk, allowing the tying run to score. The National League eventually wins, 5-4, in 10 innings.
On July 11, 1967, Tony Perez of the Cincinnati Reds hits a 15th inning home run against Jim “Catfish” Hunter of the Kansas City A’s. Perez’ dramatic blast gives the National League a 2-1 victory ending the longest game in All Star history. The 2008 15 inning All Star game would tie that record.
Events for July 11
In a 6 – 3 win against the Giants, the Pirates’ Lefty Davis, 26, in stealing second “broke his leg in the same manner George Van Haltren did two months ago on the same spot,” according to the Sporting Life. Davis, a .287 hitter with 45 steals in 171 big league games so far, is out for the season. He’ll return, but bat only .234 with 20 thefts in 177 more games.
The Federal Express of the New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad, carrying the St. Louis Cardinals to Boston, plunges down an 18-foot embankment outside Bridgeport, CT, killing 14 passengers. The team’s Pullmans were originally just behind the baggage coaches near the front. When noise prevented the players from sleeping, manager Roger Bresnahan requested the car be changed. The day coach that replaced the players’ car is crushed and splintered. The players help remove bodies and rescue the injured, then board a special train to Boston, where the day’s game is postponed. The railroad pays each player $25 for his rescue work and for lost belongings.
In Detroit, Boston’s Babe Ruth tops the Tigers, 1 – 0, allowing just Donie Bush’s scratch single in the 8th. Ruth deflects the ball but the throw by the shortstop is too late. Ruth has a single and triple, but a pinch triple by Chick Shorten in the 9th drives home the only run. Ruth strikes out Bobby Veach, Sam Crawford and Ty Cobb in the 9th; for the last, he shakes off catcher and player/manager Bill Carrigan. In early 1942, in a speech in Los Angeles, Ruth will call this game his greatest thrill. The Babe also relates to writer John Carmichael that his greatest game was the “called shot” in the 1932 World Series.
Harry Frazee, owner of the Boston Red Sox since 1916, sells out for over $1 million to a group of Ohio businessmen, who bring in veteran front office man Bob Quinn from St. Louis to run the club. Frazee’s departure is welcomed by Boston fans who are fed up with the sale of Frazee’s best players over the years, many of them to the rival New York Yankees.
At Sportsman’s Park, George Sisler becomes a one-man wrecking crew when he comes to the plate with the bases loaded in back-to-back frames in the Browns’ 10-5 victory over Washington. The St. Louis first baseman drives in seven runs in two innings, tripling with the bases jammed in the third and hitting a grand slam in the fourth.
The Giants lose, 5 – 4, in Pittsburgh as Carl Hubbell, in relief, walks in the winning run. The loss leaves New York eleven games behind the front-running Cubs. New York wins the second game, 14 – 4, as Bill Terry, hobbled with a knee injury, bangs out a single, double and triple. The win sparks a Giants surge that will see them win 39 of their next 47 games.
The Midsummer Classic returns to Comiskey Park, the site of the first game, and is won by the National League, 4-3, thanks to Red Schoendienst’s 14th-inning home run. It’s a game of firsts – first extra-inning All-Star Game, first time the NL wins at an AL park, and the first Midsummer Classic ever broadcast on national television.
In his second major-league start, Al Worthington shuts out Brooklyn, 6 – 0, for his second shutout. This ties a major league record, last accomplished by Boo Ferriss of the Red Sox in 1945. Worthington stops the Dodgers’ consecutive game homer streak. During the streak Brooklyn smacked 39 home runs, another major-league record.
Giant rookie Al Worthington throws a four-hitter, blanking the Dodgers at Ebbets Field, 6-0. The whitewashing, which halts Brooklyn’s record NL streak of homering in 24 consecutive games and marks the only game this season the team will not a score, makes the 24 year-old right-hander the first National League freshman this century to throw consecutive shutouts at the start of a career, a feat that Karl Spooner will also match next season.
In the first of this year’s two All-Star Games, Pittsburgh’s Bob Friend notches his second win in the National League’s last three with 3 innings of one-hit, shutout ball. Friend’s performance plus home runs by Ernie Banks and Del Crandall – not to mention perennial All-Star luminary, Willie Mays, falling just a few feet shy of the cycle – pace the Senior Circuit to a 5 – 3 decision over its junior counterpart at Kansas City’s Municipal Stadium. Albeit not affecting the game’s outcome, a somewhat splashy All-Star debut is made by Friend’s teammate, Roberto Clemente, if only on the wrong end of a circus catch. As readers nationwide will be shown and told by the Associated Press, Clemente’s sole at-bat results in a singularly loud out: “Many a batsman has ‘made his mark’ on the KC left field wall (note numerous dents), but the AL’s Jim Lemon pulled a spectacular catch to prevent Roberto Clemente’s long smash from adding another ‘scar’ in the 9th inning of Monday’s All-Star game.”
“My first major league game was at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh, and Roberto Clemente almost killed me!” The “Toy Cannon” meets a real cannon with near disastrous results. Speaking with Baseball Digest some 40 years after the fact, Jimmy Wynn dredges up this traumatic close encounter: “Not many people know this, but I came up as a shortstop. Clemente hit a screaming line drive, and I got my glove up just as the ball hit the left field wall. I was one heck of a high school shortstop, but the majors were another story. After that, I told the coaches and manager to get me out of the infield.” In fact, this hair-raising encounter took place during Wynn’s second game in the majors. Wynn will have to soldier on in the infield for another 10 tension-filled days, but will be firmly ensconced in centerfield after that.
In Kansas City, ground is broken for the Harry S. Truman Sports Complex, which will include separate side-by-side stadiums built specifically for baseball and football. Arrowhead Stadium, home of the NFL’s Chiefs, will open in 1972, followed by the debut a year later of Royals Stadium, the new home ballpark of the American League’s franchise in the City of Fountains.
Rick Renick becomes the first Twin player to homer in his first major league at-bat when he goes deep off Mickey Lolich in Minnesota’s 5-4 victory over Detroit at Metropolitan Stadium. The 24 year-old shortstop’s second-inning solo shot will be the first of 20 round-trippers he’ll hit during his five-year career, spent entirely with the Twin Cities team.
Hank Aaron becomes the oldest major leaguer (42 years, 5 months, 7 days) to hit a walk-off homer when he goes deep in the bottom of the tenth inning off Steve Foucault in the Brewers’ 5-4 victory over Texas at County Stadium. The ‘Hammer’ will hold the elderly distinction until Cleveland’s Jason Giambi, who will be a month and 15 days older than Henry, at the time, accomplishes the feat with a pinch-hit game-winning round-tripper in 2013.
At Jack Murphy Stadium, Steve Garvey becomes the first two-time MVP in All-Star history. The Dodgers first baseman’s game-tying, two-run single and a triple help the National League beat the American League, 7 – 3. Vida Blue starts for the NL, the first pitcher to start for both leagues. Blue also started in 1971 and 1975 for the American League.
In a contest best remembered for the leadoff Ruthian blast to center field by Bo Jackson, the game’s MVP who will join Willie Mays as the second player to hit a home run and steal a base in an All-Star Game, the American League beats the NL’s best players, 5-3, at Anaheim Stadium. During the first inning of the Mid-Summer Classic, former U.S. President and one-time baseball announcer Ronald Reagan joins Vin Scully in the NBC broadcast booth.
At Comiskey Park, the White Sox honor their 1917 World Championship team by donning old-fashioned uniforms and scaling concessions back to World War I prices. This will spawn many more Turn Back the Clock-style promotions across Major League Baseball in the coming years. Chicago loses to Milwaukee, 12 – 9, in 13 innings.
The National League defeats the American League in the All-Star Game, 3 – 2, on an 8th inning pinch-hit home run by Jeff Conine. Conine becomes the 10th player to homer in his first All-Star at bat, and is named the game’s MVP. Frank Thomas, Craig Biggio and Mike Piazza also connect for home runs. Thomas becomes the first White Sox player ever to homer in the Mid-summer Classic as the NL out-homers the American League, 3 to 2.
The United States Postal Service issues ‘Mighty Casey”, a commemorative stamp which depicts the title character of Ernest L. Thayer’s immortal poem, ‘Casey at the Bat.’ The maligned Mudville outfielder joins Paul Bunyan, John Henry, and Pecos Bill as part of a set commemorating American folk heroes.
The first MLB Futures Game provides a stage for future major-league All-Star Alfonso Soriano to shine when the Yankees farmhand goes 2 for 3, hitting two of the game’s three home runs in the World’s 7-0 victory over the USA at Fenway Park. The former Hiroshima Carp infielder, who now plays shortstop for the Columbus Clippers, is named the contest’s MVP.
The Marlins send P Ryan Dempster to the Reds for OF Juan Encarnacion, IF Wilton Guerrero, and minor league P Ryan Snare. Florida then sends OF Cliff Floyd, Guerrero, minor league P Claudio Vargas and $1.5 million to the Expos in exchange for Ps Carl Pavano and Graeme Lloyd, IF Mike Mordecai and minor league P Justin Wayne.
The Indians fire their manager, Charlie Manuel, and name third base coach Joel Skinner as the interim skipper. After issuing an ultimatum to the front office about his status, the 58-year-old is released after piloting Cleveland to a 39-47 record, 9 1/2 games behind first-place Twins in the AL Central.
Carlos Beltran, selected to be an American League All-Star, will now have an opportunity patrol the National League outfield instead. The former Royals fly catcher, traded to the Astros last month, is invited by Senior Circuit skipper Jack McKeon to replace Ken Griffey, Jr., on the star-studded roster.
One strike away from ending a decade of dominance, National League closer Trevor Hoffman yields a two-run triple to Michael Young of the Texas Rangers, giving the American League a come-from-behind 3-2 All-Star Game victory at Pittsburgh’s picturesque PNC Park. The timely three-bagger keeps the Junior Circuit unbeaten in the Midsummer Classic since 1997, compiling a 9-0-1 record.
Prior to the start of the fifth inning of the All-Star Game played in Pittsburgh’s PNC Park, Vera Clemente is escorted onto the field by 1960 World Series hero Bill Mazeroski to accept the Commissioner’s Historic Achievement Award on behalf of her late husband. With the scoreboard showing replays of Roberto, tears flowing from AL skipper Ozzie Guillen, and the heartfelt ovation from the crowd, the ceremony honoring the Pirates’ Hall of Famer becomes a truly memorable moment in the history of the Midsummer Classic.
Washington has its best offensive game since relocating from Montreal in 2005 in beating Houston, 13 – 2. The Nats collect 21 hits – the most for them since the move – and Nick Johnson, Josh Willingham and Adam Dunn homer in consecutive at bats in the 6th, also a first. Craig Stammen pitches a complete game for the win.
The Yankees hit a season-high 5 home runs in Los Angeles, including two by Alex Rodriguez, but they still lose, 14 – 8, to the Angels, who have scored 24 runs in two games since their two most potent offensive weapons, Vladimir Guerrero and Torii Hunter, hit the disabled list simultaneously on July 9th. Rodriguez moves past another steroid-tainted player, Rafael Palmeiro, for 10th on the all-time major league home run list.
18-year-old Mike Trout, the youngest player in the game, hits a double and single and fellow Angels prospect Hank Conger hits a three-run homer to lead the United States to a 9 – 1 victory over the World team at the 2010 Futures Game in Anaheim. Eric Hosmer collects four hits for the winners, while Desmond Jennings scores three runs, but it is Conger who receives the Larry Doby Award as MVP of the game.
The White Sox take advantage of five home runs – two by Carlos Quentin, including a grand slam, and one each by Alex Rios, Andruw Jones and Dayan Viciedo – to beat the Royals, 15 – 5. It’s the Sox’s 8th straight win and puts them in first place in the AL Central at the All-Star break, capping a remarkable turnaround that has seen the Pale Hose win 25 of its last 30 games after a slow start to the season.
Philadelphia wins 1 – 0 over the Reds to complete a four-game sweep. It is the first time since 1913 that the Phils have recorded consecutive 1 – 0 victories. Cole Hamels pitches scoreless ball into the 8th inning and relievers J.C. Romero and Brad Lidge record the last four outs of the game. Jimmy Rollins becomes the first National Leaguer since Roger Maris in 1968 to drive in the only run in consecutive 1 – 0 wins.
At Wilmington’s (DE) Frawley Stadium, the Blue Rocks celebrate the tenth birthday of Mr. Celery, the team’s beloved mascot who only appears when the team scores. The inception of the ’stalker,’ known for his CEL-ebratory dances to Blur’s ‘Song 2’ (Woo Hoo), was inspired by the discovery of a dusty celery costume housed in a warehouse for years.
Robinson Cano wins the annual All-Star Game Home Run Derby with a record-breaking performance in the final round at Chase Field. After Adrian Gonzalez ties the best-ever home run total for a final round with 11, Cano, hitting off his father Jose, launches 12 balls into the stands with 4 outs to spare to claim the crown.
The Pacific Coast League ends a three-game losing streak in the AAA All-Star Game, beating the International League, 3 – 0, in the 2012 AAA All-Star Game. Wil Myers drives in one run then scores another in being named the PCL Star of Stars, while Matt Harvey takes the honor for the IL with two shutout innings. IL starter Tyler Cloyd (8-1, 2.01) allows two runs in the 1st to take the loss.
Derek Jeter plays for the Yankees for the first time since breaking his ankle in Game 1 of the 2012 ALCS. Inserted as the DH, he singles on the first pitch he sees and comes in to score as the Yanks beat the Royals, 8 – 4. Jeter comes back after only four rehabilitation outings in the minors, after two Yankees starters, CF Brett Gardner and DH Travis Hafner, are injured the previous day. However, Jeter leaves the game after the 5th inning with a tight quad muscle and will undergo an MRI.
The Marlins set a team record with 9 consecutive hits in the 7th inning of a 14 – 3 win over the Reds. One of the hits is costly, as 2B Dee Gordon dislocates his left thumb in reaching on an infield single, putting him out of the All-Star Game. Reliever Mike Dunn has his first career hit during the string as Miami scores 8 runs. J.T. Realmuto hits a three-run homer as rookie Adam Conley records his first victory in a spot start. For Cincinnati, Manny Parra gives up 5 runs without retiring a batter.
The Colombian national team appears in its first Pan American Games since 1983. In the opener of the 2015 Pan American Games, they trail the Cuban national team, 4 – 3, after five before Cuba pulls away late for a 10 – 3 win. Lázaro Blanco gets the win over Javier Ortiz, with Héctor Acuña homering for Colombia. José Adolis García hits a two-run shot, Roel Santosa solo bomb and Raúl González a three-run dinger.
2017 – The American League wins the 2017 All-Star Game, played at Marlins Park in Miami, FL, 2 – 1, in 10 innings over the National League. Miguel Sano gives the AL the lead with a bloop single to right scoring Jonathan Schoop with two outs in the 5th, but Yadier Molina ties it with a solo homer to the opposite field off Ervin Santana in the 6th. Robinson Cano leads off the 10th by parking Wade Davis’ first pitch beyond the right-field fence, then Andrew Miller records the last three outs for the save. Cano is named winner of the Ted Williams Award as the game’s MVP. The two leagues are now tied with 43 wins apiece since the first mid-summer classic was played in 1933, with two ties.
The Rockies go on a scoring binge in crushing the Diamondbacks, 19 – 2. The Rox hit five homers, including two by Carlos Gonzalez and one by pitcher German Marquez, while position players Daniel Descalso and Alex Avila combine for 4 2/3 innings of relief in order to spare Arizona’s bullpen. D-Backs starter Shelby Miller does not make it out of the 1st inning, allowing 5 runs before exiting due to tightness in his elbow, and relievers Jorge De La Rosa and Yoshihisa Hirano are shelled for 7 and 4 runs respectively.
The Indians also light up the scoreboard in winning the battle of Ohio, 19 – 5, over the Reds. Jose Ramirez homers twice and drives in 5, as Tyler Mahle gives up 7 runs in 2 1/3 innings and his successor, Tanner Rainey, another 8 runs in just two-thirds of an inning. IF Alex Blandino is called on to pitch mop-up duty in the 8th and is the only Reds pitcher not to allow a run.
1985 – Nolan Ryan fans Danny Heep in the sixth inning to become the first player to reach 4,000 career strikeouts. Kevin Bass homers in the frame to give the Astros a 3-1 lead but miscues later let the Mets tie it. Bill Doran’s fifth hit of the game, in the 12th, scores Dickie Thon for a 4-3 Houston victory.
1969 – Cincinnati manager Dave Bristol launches a tirade for the ages during a 13-2 massacre by Don Wilson and the Astros. Bristol bumps umpire Augie Donatelli, steps on his shoes, berates the ump for several minutes then flings chairs and equipment upon returning to the dugout. And he was only behind 2-1 at the time! Good thing he didn’t see the nine-run Houston sixth, highlighted by a bases-loaded triple from Denis Menke and two hits by Sandy Valdespino. Wilson fans ten and posts a six-hitter. He’s also plunked twice at the plate.
1967 – Jim Wynn becomes the first Houston player to get a hit in the All-Star Game . He singles in the ninth against Al Downing but does not score. Rusty Staub singles off Catfish Hunter in the 11th but also doesn’t score. Mike Cuellar, the third Astro All-Star, pitches two shutout innings . Finally, Tony Perez of Cincinnati homers in the 15th to give the Nationals a 2-1 win.
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