This Day In Baseball May 22
Debuts, Milestones, No Hitters, Rule Changes, Events, Birthdays, Deaths, and more on This Day In Baseball.
Events for May 22
The Giants complete a western trip in first place, beating the Reds today, 6 – 1. Christy Mathewson is in total control, giving up three hits in the first three innings, and then retiring the next 18 batters. The Giants will win nine straight, before losing to St. Louis, 5 – 1, on May 31st, and will open a 14-game lead.
In an attempt to shake up the team, the Pirates send veteran Tommy Leach and pitcher Lefty Leifield to Chicago for 29-year-old Solly Hofman and pitcher King Cole. Cole, 40-13 in 2+ years of pitching, will be a poor contributor, eventually pitching in just 17 games for Pittsburgh before ending his career with the Highlanders.
The Giants send Red Ames, Heinie Groh and outfielder Josh Devore to Cincinnati for P Art Fromme and infielder Eddie Grant. The little-used Groh will star in Cincinnati, and eventually manage the team. Devore will be sold to the Phillies in August. Grant, a starter until today, will not play until June 4th, so there is some confusion about whether he was sold on that date or part of today’s trade.
Browns rookie Dwight Stone gives up six hits, seven walks and plunks three batters, but still beats the Yankees, 7 – 0. The visiting New Yorkers strand a modern major league-record 15 runners in the shutout by Stone, who will win just one more game this season. Ed Klepfer is the losing pitcher in his only decision of the year. The record will be matched three times and finally topped, in 1994. The National League record of 14 runners stranded in a shutout was set less than two weeks earlier by Pittsburgh against the Phillies.
In a Negro National League game at St. Louis’ Stars Park, Chicago American Giants CF Cristobal Torriente hits for the cycle, scoring three and batting in seven runs. He finishes his offensive outburst with a homer in the top of the 9th to give the American Giants an 11 – 10 lead. In the bottom of the 9th, Jack Marshall gets into a jam and Torriente comes in with two out and runners on second and third base. With Cool Papa Bell at the plate, Torriente promptly goes from hero to goat in the space of two pitches, both of them wild, allowing the tying and winning runs to score easily.
Babe Ruth breaks a 1 – 1 tie between the Yanks and White Sox by clouting a two-run homer in the 15th inning. The blow breaks up a tense pitching duel between little Mike Cvengros and Herb Pennock, who goes all the way giving up just four hits. The Yanks have now won 12 of 13 contests in their western swing.
White Sox CF Johnny Mostil handles 12 chances against the Indians, equaling Happy Felsch’s American League record, also made against Cleveland, as the Sox win, 4 – 3. Mostil also legs it home from second base with the winning run on a wild pitch by George Uhle. Sam Langford has a home run and two doubles for Cleveland.
In Philadelphia, the Yankees and the Athletics continue the home run barrage as the Yankees take both games of a second straight doubleheader, 10 – 1 and 20 – 13. Babe Ruth hits a pair of home runs in the opener, as does Ben Chapman and winning pitcher George Pipgras. The Yanks score nine runs in the first two innings of the second game, but the A’s come back to tie it at 12 apiece. The Yanks win the assault, 20 – 13, as Tony Lazzeri is 4 for 4, scores five runs, and knocks in 4. Ruth hits another in the second game, while Lou Gehrig powers three round trippers to drive in eight runs. On the A’s side, Jimmie Foxx has two homers to drive in six runs. For the afternoon, the teams combine to hit 14 round trippers, a then-record 10 in the nitecap.
Babe Ruth ties a major league record by hitting five homers in two games and six homers in three games when he hits a trio of round-trippers in the second game of yesterday’s doubleheader, two more in the opener of today’s twin bill, adding one more in the nightcap. Teammate Lou Gehrig also goes deep three times in the second game of the doubleheader, a 20-13 Yankee victory over the A’s at Philadelphia’s Shibe Park.
Facing Wes Ferrell in Boston, Hank Greenberg hits a long centerfield home run out of Fenway Park. It exits to the right of the flag pole and is called the longest home run ever hit at Fenway. Gee Walker has three hits to run his hitting streak to 26 straight games, but the Red Sox counter with 14 hits of their own to win, 11 – 9. Walker’s streak will end on the 24th after 27 games.
The Athletics regain the American League lead by beating the White Sox, 10 – 9 in 11 innings. In the inning, however, they need two singles, a runner safe on an error, and three walks to win the game as Chicago C Luke Sewell picks one runner off at second base and throws another out at third base on a steal attempt.
Before a 6 – 2 loss to the Reds in Cincinnati, the Dodgers announce that Van Lingle Mungo has been fined, suspended for three days, and given a bill for $1,500 worth of damage done to a St. Louis hotel room following a ruckus last week with teammates trying to get him to bed at four A.M. When a photographer asks to take a picture of Mungo’s black eye, the pitcher replies, “You can take it for $1,000, because that’s what it cost me to get it.”
A smart play by the Reds’ Lonny Frey helps Cincy to a 6 – 4 win over the Giants. With one out and the sacks full in the 1st, Chuck Aleno hits a double play grounder to short. Frey, running from second base, allows the ball to hit him for an out, stopping play and putting Aleno on first base. Ernie Lombardi then hits a grand slam. Frank McCormick adds a two-run home run in the 3rd.
Ted Williams is sworn into the U.S. Navy but will remain with the Red Sox until called for active duty. Earlier in the year, a public outcry occurred when the Boston outfielder asked to be reclassified from Class 1-A to 3-A, due to being the sole support of his mother, causing the Quaker Oats Company to drop him from their ads.
Josh Gibson’s historic home run helps the defending Negro National League Champion Homestead Grays prevail against the New York Black Yankees. Gibson, reports the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, “hit one of the longest home runs ever poled at Forbes Field when he thrilled the crowd of 5,000 by driving one 450 feet over the left-center wall.” This estimate is almost certainly understated, and perhaps by quite a bit.
With the score tied 1 – 1 in the 10th inning at Ebbets Field, Cubs SS Lennie Merullo and Dodgers 2B Eddie Stanky start punching each other, precipitating a brawl between the two teams. Claude Passeau rips off Leo Durocher’s jersey before calm is restored. The Dodgers win, 2 – 1, in 13 innings, collecting 11 hits off Johnny Schmitz, who goes the distance. Joe Hatten gives up four hits in 12 innings, with Kirby Higbe pitching the last round.
Brooklyn’s Don Newcombe makes his first major league start a dandy, shutting out the Reds, 3 – 0, in Cincinnati. It’s the first shutout in a National League debut in eleven years and extends Brooklyn’s win streak at Cincinnati to 19 games going back to June 1947. Newk gives up hits to the first two batters, then allows just three more hits while walking none. He drives in two runs as well. Ken Raffensberger then matches Newk by firing a one-hitter in the nitecap to beat Brooklyn, 2 – 0, tossing only 83 pitches. The only hit is a leadoff single by Gil Hodges in the 8th. Raffensberger pitched two one-hitters against the Dodgers in 1948.
Yanks OF Irv Noren ends the game by lining back to pitcher Bob Porterfield, who starts a triple play, as the Senators beat the Yankees, 12 – 4. The Nats score five in the 1st inning off Allie Reynolds. Washington tallies 18 hits including a three-run homer and two-run double by Clyde Vollmer. Johnny Mize hits a pinch single in the 9th, his fifth pinch single in a row, breaking a mark set by Cleveland’s Les Fleming in 1947. Mize has had a walk and been hit by a pitch in his last seven pinch appearances.
The second game of a Giants-Pirates doubleheader is called at the top of the 9th due to rain, 28 minutes short of the Sunday curfew, with the Giants leading, 5 – 3. If the rain had started before the end of the 8th, the game would have gone to the Pirates by a score of 3 – 2. The umpires almost rule it a suspended game rather than a called game, because they feel they have to wait at least half an hour before calling a game, which would set the time two minutes after the curfew. But a Giants vice president finds the rule that puts weather and similar conditions first when determining whether a game is called or suspended.
The Red Sox set an American League record by smashing four home runs in the 6th inning in an 11 – 0 win over Cleveland. Gene Mauch, Ted Williams, Dick Gernert and Frank Malzone do the honors. All of these come on the first 16 pitches from Cal McLish. Williams had set the record with Jimmie Foxx, Joe Cronin and Jim Tabor in 1940.
Roger Maris, who went all of 1961 without receiving an intentional walk, gets four in a 12-inning, 2 – 1 win against the Angels to set an American League record. Maris receives five walks in all. Four Yankee pitchers (Whitey Ford, Jim Coates, Bud Daley and Bob Turley) combine to give up just one hit in 12 innings. Ford leaves after seven innings because of back spasms, and Coates gives up the lone hit, a one-out 9th-inning single to Buck Rodgers.
At Yankee Stadium, New York blows a 7 – 0 lead and allows Kansas City to tie the game and send it into extra innings. Mickey Mantle, leading off the 11th, is fooled by Bill Fischer on a slow curve, then cannons a 2 – 2 pitch that almost clears the RF roof. “The hardest ball I ever hit,” Mantle later comments, a ball that, by some accounts, is still rising when it strikes a foot below the top. It is conservatively estimated by Dr. James McDonald, a physicist who studies long-ball trajectories, that the ball would have traveled 620 feet if it had not struck the façade. “That was the only homer I ever hit that the bat actually bent in my hands,” Mantle tells Dale Long, from whom he borrowed the bat.
Baltimore edges the Twins, 6 – 5, scoring two runs in the 9th for the victory. Twins reliever Gerry Arrigo allows a two-out home run to Sam Bowens, his second home run of the game, then throws three balls to John Orsino before being lifted for Bill Fischer. Fischer throws a strike to Orsino who then hits his next pitch for the winning home run. It is Fischer’s last major league game: on the 24th he is placed on the voluntarily retired list.
5/22/1972 – The Texas Rangers batted out of order in the bottom of the 10th inning against Chicago. Texas had made a double switch an inning earlier when Paul Lindblad entered the game as the new pitcher and Don Mincher went to first base. Evidently Rangers manager Ted Williams did not notify the umpire, who therefore recorded the substitutions in the same batting order slot as the previous players at the same defensive position. This is usually referred to as ‘straight up.’ Thus when Mincher batted in the ninth spot in the 10th inning he was out of order. Lindblad was called out with Toby Harrah as the runner on first and then Elliott Maddox struck out to end the game, with the White Sox winning 7-6.
The Red Sox split a doubleheader with the Brewers, winning the opener, 14 – 10. The two teams tie a major-league record in the game when they combine for 11 home runs, six by Boston. Dwight Evans clocks one of the homers over the new upper section of the CF wall, about 20 feet to the right of the flag pole. In the past three games, the two teams have hit 23 homers. Eduardo Rodriguez stops the slugging in the second game, allowing two Boston hits to win, 6 – 0.
In his last major league at-bat, Mario Mendoza, who will become a minor league hitting instructor, reaches first on a fielder’s choice, ending his nine-year career with a .215 batting average. The Ranger infielder’s name will become infamous, as players struggling at the plate will become known as performing below the ‘Mendoza Line.’
The Durham Bulls and Winston-Salem Warthogs engage in a brawl that takes more than 30 minutes to sort out. 10 players are ejected from the Carolina League game. Winston-Salem pitcher Glen Cullop is knocked unconscious in the melee which occurs on “Strike Out Domestic Violence Night.” A total of $6,000 in fines is levied, and 124 games in suspensions.
After a brawl between the Durham Bulls and Winston-Salem Warthogs, which takes more than 30 minutes to sort out, ten players are ejected during ‘Strike Out Domestic Violence Night’ at Durham Bulls Athletic Park. The president of the Carolina League will hand down 124 days of suspensions, which will include every player in uniform for some period of time.
San Diego pitcher Joey Hamilton homers and Tony Gwynn has three hits off Hideo Nomo as the San Diego Padres top the Dodgers, 4 – 1. It is the Pads’ seventh straight win over the Los Angeles Dodgers. Gwynn, whose wife Alicia is being sued by Nomo, goes 3 for 4 to raise his average to .387. Nomo sued Alicia Gwynn last week in Los Angeles Superior Court, claiming the unauthorized use of his name and picture in a jigsaw puzzle.
Mo Vaughn’s single in the 8th snaps a tie and rescues Steve Sparks’ wild knuckler as the Angels beat the Devil Rays, 8 – 6. In the 3rd inning, Sparks hits Paul Sorrento to load the bases, then plunks the next two batters with a knuckler. He is the 4th pitcher to hit three batters in a row, joining Houston’s C.J. Nitkowski in 1998, Chicago’s Wilbur Wood in 1977 and Pittsburgh’s Dock Ellis in 1974. He also plunks Jose Canseco in the 1st inning to tie the major league mark for hit batsmen. Sparks only allows five hits, but walks 6 in addition to hitting 4.
The Yankees defeat the White Sox, 10 – 2, in the first game of a doubleheader. Roger Clemens gets the win for New York, giving him an American League-record 19 consecutive victories over the course of two seasons; he will extend the streak by one before losing. This win was delayed by a stint on the disabled list and a rainout. The White Sox come back to take the second game, 2 – 1.
Scoring seven times in the 9th, the Brewers make the biggest comeback in franchise history, knotting the score at 9 before only 3,913 fans at Milwaukee County Stadium. Jose Hernandez’s solo homer in the next inning completes the come-from-behind victory as Milwaukee beats the Astros, 10 – 9 in the first game of a doubleheader. Milwaukee also wins the second game, 6 – 1.
Scoring seven times in the bottom of the ninth, the Brewers make their biggest comeback in franchise history, knotting the score at 9 before only 3,913 fans at County Stadium. Jose Hernandez’s solo homer in the next inning completes the come-from-behind victory when Milwaukee beats the Astros, 10-9.
For the second time this season, Barry Bonds homers in six consecutive games. His nine homers during this span of games establishes a National League mark. 1968 Senators slugger Frank Howard’s feat of hitting 10 homers in six games is the major league record. The Giants lose to the Diamondbacks, 12 – 8, as Mark Grace has four hits, including two doubles.
The Athletics send OF Jeremy Giambi to the Phillies in exchange for IF/OF John Mabry. The trade, viewed as one-sided for the Phils, especially by the statistically-oriented community, will be a good one for Oakland. Giambi will homer in his first two Phillie at bats on the 25th, and be the first player in major league history to hit eight homers in each league before the All-Star break. He’ll finish the year with 20. That, plus Jason Giambi’s 41, will give the Giambi boys the record for homers by brothers in the same season, topping the 59 hit in 1937 by Joe DiMaggio (46) and Vince DiMaggio (13). However, Mabry will slug .523 in 89 games and help Oakland to a division title.
Minnesota governor Jesse Ventura approves a financing framework for a $330 million open-air stadium. The bill is the result a seven-year effort by the Twins to secure help from the state, but the plan has only tepid support from the club because team officials are unsure if they’ll be able to find $120 million for a required downpayment and get a guarantee from Major League Baseball that a team will play in Minnesota for at least 30 years.
In what appears to be a lopsided trade, the A’s trade a stunned Jeremy Giambi (.274, 8, 17) to Philadelphia in exchange for pinch-hitter John Mabry (.286, 0, 3). The Oakland outfielder is also four years younger than the Phillies’ utility man, but he doesn’t meet the ‘Moneyball’ approach preached by GM Billy Beane.
Arturo Moreno purchases the World Champion Angels from Walt Disney for $184 million to become the third owner in the 43-year history of the franchise. The 56-year-old outdoor advertising tycoon, who is a fourth-generation Mexican-American, is the first Hispanic to have a controlling interest in a major league club.
Oakland retires Reggie Jackson jersey number 9, honoring the slugger who played his first nine Hall of Fame seasons with the A’s, helping the team club capture three consecutive World Series (1972-74). The former Athletics’ right fielder, who had his number 44 retired by the Yankees in 1993, becomes the eighth player to have his number retired by two or more teams.
David Price, the first overall pick in the 2007 amateur draft, finally makes his professional debut, delayed by an elbow injury. Price hits 98 mph in the 1st inning for the Vero Beach Devil Rays and tosses five scoreless frames for the victory. He will appear in the World Series before the year is out.
Gio Gonzalez of the Athletics has the best outing of his career so far, tossing 8 shutout innings in beating San Francisco, 1 – 0. He retires the final 20 batters he faces before manager Bob Geren gives the ball to Andrew Bailey to pitch the 9th. However, the news is not all good for Oakland: they place long-time 3B Eric Chavez on the disabled list with two bulging disks in his neck; Chavez, who has been bothered by injuries continually since 2007, hints that his career may be over. He is hitting .234 with one homer in 33 games and has been used almost exclusively as a designated hitter. He won’t play for Oakland again, but will make a successful comeback as a back-up with the Yankees next season.
After setting the mark in his previous game, Mike Redmond’s major league record errorless-streak behind the plate comes to an end when his throw to second base, trying to thwart a would-be base stealer, skips past Mark Grudzielanek. The Indians catcher’s streak started on July 22, 2004, and covered a span of 253 games.
James Shields delivers a big game as the Rays top the Marlins, 4 – 0, at Sun Life Stadium. Shields strikes out a Rays-record 13 batters in pitching a three-hit shutout, retiring 20 of the first 21 batters he faces. He also drives in his team’s first run with a groundout in the 2nd inning. Jay Buente is the loser in his first career start.
Known for his tape-measure blasts, Miguel Cabrera gets some help from Indians CF Michael Bourn in knocking one out in the 8th, as Bourn is about to make the catch at the warning track when the ball bounces off his glove and into the stands for a home run. Detroit wins, 11 – 7. The game is delayed by rain for over an hour in the 5th inning, but Justin Verlander still returns to record the final two outs of the frame, thus qualifying for the win; there is another 48-minute delay in the 8th but the game is played to its conclusion.
The Brewers badly botch a pitching change in the 7th inning of a 5 – 4 loss to Atlanta. Manager Ron Roenicke goes to the mound after pinch-hitter Ryan Doumit is announced into the game and summons lefthander Will Smith to replace Brandon Kintzler. Problem is, no one is warming up in the Brewers’ bullpen. Smith has to rush to the mound and only gets the maximum 8 pitches to get ready. Doumit then rips a single to left, bringing in the tying and go-ahead runs. Roenicke blames the foul-up on miscommunication with Rick Tomlin, filling in as pitching coach in the absence of both Rick Kranitz and bullpen coach Lee Tunnell.
Barack Obama becomes the first U.S. president to visit the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown. During his visit, the Commander in Chief, a White Sox fan, holds FDR’s green-light letter and a pair of spikes worn by Chicago’s “Shoeless” Joe Jackson, who was one of the eight players banned from the game for their alleged role in fixing the 1919 World Series.
In a meeting of the two teams sporting the best records in the majors, Kansas City defeats St. Louis, 5 – 0, in the first game of an interleague series. Kendry Morales homers twice and drives in all five runs to bring his RBI total for the season to 37, most in the American League. Chris Young improves to 4-0.
In a marathon game, Yasiel Puig hits a two-run single with the bases loaded and one out in the top of the 17th inning, to lead the Dodgers to a 9 – 5 win over Padres. Puig thereby atones for a baserunning mistake in the 9th, when he hit a lead-off single and stole second, but then failed to advance to third base when A.J. Ellis laid down a sacrifice bunt and was left stranded as a result. The game takes 5 hours and 47 minutes to complete. Everyone pitches in for Los Angeles, as P Clayton Kershaw is used as a pinch-hitter, and Ross Stripling, scheduled to start tomorrow, throws the last three innings to get credit for the win. Loser Luis Perdomo pitches four scoreless innings before finally breaking.
Making a spot start in place of the injured Dallas Keuchel, Brad Peacock allows one hit in 4 1/3 innings to launch the Astros on their way to a 1 – 0 win over the Tigers. Three other pitchers complete the one-hit shutout, with Chris Devenski getting credit for the win. Mikie Mahtook has the Bengals’ only hit, a 3rd-inning single, while the Tigers strike out 14 times. Jose Altuve drives in the game’s only run with a double off Michael Fulmer that scores George Springer in the 1st. The Astros are the first team to notch 30 wins this season.
Veteran OF Rajai Davis has a surreal day: at 5:00 PM, he is taking batting practice with the Syracuse Mets in Allentown, PA, in anticipation of an evening game against the Lehigh Valley IronPigs of the International League. That’s when he gets the news that he has been called up to the major league Mets. He hires a driver to take him to Citi Field and after a two-hour ride, arrives there in the 3rd inning. He gets lost on his way to the clubhouse and has to ask for directions. He finally meets his manager and teammates in the 5th. He is then sent to pinch-hit for Drew Gagnon in the bottom of the 8th and hits a three-run homer off Sean Doolittle of the Nationals, capping a six-run inning. The Mets win the game, 6 – 1.
1974 – Milt May belts a two-out pinch-hit grand slam homer off Vicente Romo in the ninth inning to topple San Diego, 5-1 . Claude Osteen and Randy Jones had dueled to a 1-1 draw for eight innings. Osteen takes the victory, allowing five hits. Osteen had once tutored Jones when the hurler was in junior high school.
1965 – The Astrodome appears on national television for the first time. Viewers of ABC’s Game Of The Week watch Willie Mays blast a mammoth shot into the center field tunnel as the Giants pummels the Astros, 10-1. Chris Schenkel and Leo Durocher are the announcers. In the untelevised nightcap of the day-night twinbill, Nellie Fox drives home Rusty Staub in the eighth for a 3-2 Houston victory. Joe Gaines homers.
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