1883 – New York Gothams owner John B. Day proposes a resolution to prohibit a team from signing a player who has broken the reserve clause of his contract. This resolution, eventually adopted by both the American Association and National League, effectively changes the reserve clause from a device to protect owners from their own greediness to a vindictive weapon to be used against uncooperative players.
The American Association expels the Philadelphia Athletics, who lost the last 22 games of the season, for violating the league’s constitution. The Quakers, a team which had played the 1890 season in the ‘City of Brotherly Love’ in the defunct Players’ League, replaces the ousted financially-strapped franchise.
Terry Forster, the American League saves leader in 1974 with the White Sox, signs a big contract with the Dodgers, becoming the team’s first free agent. Last season, the southpaw compiled a 6-4 record with a 4.43 ERA pitching for the Pirates and will post an 11-13 record during his five years in Los Angeles.
A groundbreaking ceremony is held to build what will eventually be known as Tropicana Field, a venue for hosting baseball fans from Tampa Bay and St. Petersburg, before securing a major league franchise. The Florida Suncoast Dome, the ballpark’s original name, will be completed in 1990, but will not field a MLB team until eight years later when the expansion Devil Rays play their first game, although, at various times during the interim, it’s rumored the White Sox, Mariners, and Giants are making plans to be tenants in the Pinellas County facility.
At a lunchtime celebration at Union Station, which includes a protest, the recently relocated Washington National League franchise announces its new name, logo, and colors. Using the official original name of the district’s team which used the nickname the Senators from 1901-56, the club clad in red, white, blue, and gold will be known as the Nationals.
Joey Votto of the Cincinnati Reds wins the 2010 National League Most Valuable Player Award. He defeats fellow 1B Albert Pujols of the Cardinals who had beaten him in voting for both the Gold Glove and Silver Slugger awards, by getting 31 of 32 first-place votes in recognition of his leadership role on a young Reds team that reached the postseason for the first time in 15 years. Carlos Gonzalez of the Rockies finishes third.
Joey Votto, receiving 31 of 32 first-place votes, is the overwhelming choice of the BBWAA to be the National League’s Most Valuable Player. The Reds’ first baseman, who helped Cincinnati reach the playoffs for the first time in 15 years, hit .324 and led the major leagues with a .424 on-base percentage.
OF Ryan Braun of the Milwaukee Brewers is voted the winner of the 2011 National League Most Valuable Player Award. Braun hit .332 with 33 homers and 111 RBI as the Brewers won the AL Central title for the first time. He outpolls Los Angeles’ Matt Kemp who flirted with a Triple Crown but whose team was left far out of the running for a postseason slot.
Ryan Braun (.332, 33, 111) becomes the first Brewer selected as the Most Valuable Player since1989 when Robin Yount won the award. The Milwaukee left fielder, who was listed first on 20 ballots and second on the rest of the 32 writers’ ballots, outpointed runner-up LA’s Matt Kemp (.324, 39, 126) in the overall voting, 388-332.
President Barack Obama awards the Presidential Medal of Freedom to broadcaster Vin Scully, the voice of the Dodgers for the past 67 seasons. The recently retired play-by-play announcer joins other baseball notables, including Hank Aaron, Moe Berg, Jackie Robinson, Roberto Clemente, Ted Williams, and Stan Musial, to have received the nation’s highest civilian honor.
According to a report in the magazine Forbes, Major League Baseball revenues in 2017 grew for the 15th consecutive year and passed the $10 billion threshold for the first time. The growing value of television rights and increasing ratings are the primary reasons behind this growth, in spite of a slight decline in attendance at ballparks.