1942 The Dodgers replace team president Larry MacPhail, who accepted a commission in the U.S. Army in September, with Branch Rickey, formerly the Cardinals’ vice-president before resigning three days ago. Brooklyn’s new boss will guide the team to two pennants during his eight-year reign in the “The Borough of Churches.”
1966 In the final time when there is only one selection from both leagues, Dodger southpaw Sandy Koufax becomes the first three-time recipient of the Cy Young Award. The 30-year-old left-hander, recipient of the prestigious pitching prize in 1963 and 1965, posted a 27-9 (.750) record and an ERA of 1.73 for the National League champs.
2001 The first major league game ever started in November becomes memorable when the Yankees, for the second consecutive night, make a dramatic comeback in the bottom of the ninth to tie the game and go on to a World Series Game Five victory in extra innings. Scott Brosius hits a game-tying two-out two-run homer to knot the game at 2-2, and Alfonso Soriano singles in Chuck Knoblauch in the 12th, giving the Yankees a 3-2 victory and 3-2 lead in the Fall Classic over the Diamondbacks.
2005 The unveiling of a bronze sculpture capturing the friendship of Pee Wee Reese and Jackie Robinson takes place at Brooklyn’s KeySpan Park, home of the Mets’ Single-A team. The William Behrends sculpture captures the moment when the Dodger captain showed support by putting his arm around his black teammate’s shoulder, hushing an unruly crowd hurling racial slurs at his teammate at Crosley Field in 1947.
2010 Edgar Renteria, who drove in the Marlins’ winning run against Cleveland during Game 7 of the 1997 Fall Classic, joins Yankees legends Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, and Yogi Berra as only the fourth player in baseball history to collect two World Series-winning hits. The Series MVP’s three-run homer off Cliff Lee in the seventh inning leads to San Francisco’s 3-1 victory over the Rangers, bringing a World Championship to the Giants for the first time since 1954.
2001 The Yankees’ 3-2 victory over the Diamondbacks marks the first time a team comes back to tie a Fall Classic game in the ninth and then goes on to win in extra innings since the Philadelphia A’s Mule Haas hit a game-tying two-run homer in Game 5 of the 1929 World Series. Tino Martinez sent the contest into overtime with a two-out homer off Diamondbacks’ closer Byung-Hyun Kim, and Derek Jeter, dubbed Mr. November, wins the game after the stroke of midnight with a full count two-out round-tripper, giving the Bronx Bombers the walkoff victory.
2005 On Halloween night, former Red Sox General Manager Theo Epstein eludes the media on the night of his resignation parked outside Fenway Park disguised in a gorilla suit. The hairy costume will be auctioned at a future charity event, making $11,000 for the Jimmy Fund and Theo’s Foundation, To Be Named Later.
2009 In Game 3, Alex Rodriguez’s fly ball in the right-field corner of Citizens Bank Park becomes the subject of the first instant replay call in World Series history. The umpires changed the Yankee third baseman’s hit, initially ruled a double, to a home run after the replay clearly showed the ball going over the fence before striking a television camera and bouncing back to the field.
2013 The Red Sox capture the World Championship at Fenway Park for the first time since 1918 when the team beats the Cardinals, 6-1, in Game 6 of the Fall Classic. After an 86-year drought between World Series titles, Boston has won three crowns in the past ten years.
2019 After beginning the season with the worst record through 50 games of any champion, the Nationals win the World Series, beating the Astros 6-2 in Game 7. The Minute Maid Park victory marks the first time in the history of the Fall Classic that the road teams were a perfect 7-0 in the series.
1953 Red Barber resigns as a Brooklyn Dodger broadcaster and will take the ‘catbird’ seat with the rival New York Yankees. The ‘Old Redhead’ reportedly left the team because he was upset with Brooklyn owner Walter O’Malley’s refusal to support him when he failed to get a higher fee from Gillette, the sponsor of the 1953 World Series on television.
1981 After dropping the first two games of the Fall Classic, the Dodgers defeat the Yankees, 9-2, capturing the World Championship in six games. The victory at the Bronx ballpark marks the third time this postseason that Los Angeles will come from behind to win a series, having been down 0-2 against the Astros in the five-game strike-necessitated NLDS and 1-2 behind the Expos in the NLCS five-game series.
1981 Entering Game 6 of the World Series in the fifth inning, Yankee right-hander George Frazier, relieving starter Tommy John, gives up three go-ahead runs in the team’s 9-2 elimination loss to the Dodgers at Yankee Stadium. The 27-year-old reliever becomes the first pitcher to lose three games in a best-of-seven World Series and the second to drop that many decisions in any Fall Classic, joining White Sox Lefty Williams, the loser of a trio of games in the best-of-nine series played in 1919.
1995 In Game 6, Tom Glavine and Mark Wohlers combine on a one-hitter to defeat the Indians, 1-0, giving the Braves their third World Championship, the first since moving to Atlanta. David Justice’s leadoff homer in the sixth inning off Jim Poole proves to be the difference.
2011 After being down by 10.5 games on August 25 for the NL Central Division lead, the Cardinals beat the Rangers at Busch Stadium, 6-2, in Game 7 of the Fall Classic to win their eleventh world championship in franchise history. In Game 6, the Redbirds had been down to their last strike in the ninth and the tenth innings but rallied to tie the score and eventually win the game on David Freese’s leadoff, walk-off home run in the 11th.
Note: These historical notes are excerpts from a list of many more at the website linked above. I recommend you click it for more amusing or tragic baseball facts from this day.
The D-Backs give the ball to RHP Zac Gallen (2-2, 5.24 ERA postseason) and the Rangers give theirs to RHP Nathan Eovaldi (4-0, 2.42 ERA postseason). Here’s a preview. Here’s a position-by-position breakdown.
How about that? Each team’s GM played baseball for Princeton, noted hotbed of the summer game. There have been 97 pro baseball players from the New Jersey school; 43 of them, including the D-Backs’ Mike Hazen and the Rangers’ Chris Young, played for the current coach, Scott Bradley.
1985 The Royals become the sixth team to overcome a 3-1 deficit to win the Fall Classic when series MVP Bret Saberhagen, who became a new dad yesterday, blanks the Cardinals on five hits, 11-0. Kansas City is the first home team in World Series history to lose the series’ first two games and win the World Championship.
1986 With another dramatic comeback, the Mets defeat the Red Sox, 8-5, winning Game 7 of the Fall Classic to become World Champions for the second time in the franchise’s 25-year history. Third baseman Ray Knight, the Fall Classic’s MVP, makes amends for an earlier error by hitting a home run, which puts the Mets ahead in the seventh inning.
1989 After a ten-day delay due to the Loma Prieta earthquake, the World Series resumes with the A’s beating the Giants in Game 3, 13-7. Oakland joins the 1928 Yankees as only the second team in major league history to hit five home runs in a Fall Classic contest.
1991 In Game 7 of the ‘Worst to First’ World Series, the Twins beat the Braves, 1-0, when Dan Gladden scores the winning run in the bottom of the tenth on Gene Larkin’s single, clinching its second world championship since relocating from Washington D.C. in 1961. Atlanta and Minnesota had both finished in last place in their respective divisions the previous season.
1991 At the Metrodome, Jack Morris goes the distance in Game 7 of the World Series, blanking the Braves, 1-0, in the Twins’ ten-inning, dramatic walk-off win. The 36-year-old right-hander, who posts a 2-0 record along with a 1.17 ERA during his three starts, is named the Most Valuable Player of the Fall Classic.
2002 In the team’s 42nd season, the Angels finally win a World Series title by beating the Giants, 4-1, in Game 7 at Edison Field. Garret Anderson’s three-run double provides enough offense for John Lackey to become the first rookie to win the seventh game since 1909, when Babe Adams accomplished the feat for the Pirates.
2004 Under the moon’s reddish tint caused by a lunar eclipse, the Red Sox exorcised 86 years of agonizing losses by winning their first World Series since 1918. In one of the most dominating Fall Classic performances, Boston, who never trailed during the four games, blanks the Cardinals, 3-0, to complete the sweep.
2015 Michael Conforto becomes the third player to accomplish the World Series Triple Crown, playing in the Little League World Series (2004 Redmond LL, WA), the College World Series (2013 Oregon State), and the MLB World Series (2015 Mets). The two other major leaguers who have participated in the rare event are Jason Varitek (1984 Altamonte Springs LL, FL, 1994 Georgia Tech, and the 2004 Red Sox) and Ed Vosberg (1973 Tucson LL, AZ, the 1980 University of Arizona, and the 1997 Marlins).
2020 The Dodgers, the National League representative three out of the last four World Series, end their 32-year drought without a world championship, beating the Rays, 3-1, in Game 6 at Globe Life Field. After winning seven straight divisional titles, the team wins its first Fall Classic since 1988, a year best remembered for the heroics of Kirk Gibson.
1972 Jackie Robinson, weakened by heart disease complications and diabetes, dies of a heart attack in his North Stamford (CT) home. The 53-year-old nearly blind baseball pioneer and social activist’s death comes nine days after his appearance at the World Series, where he threw the ceremonial first pitch before Game 2 at Cincinnati’s Riverfront Stadium.
1987 The Twins, amidst the deafening crowd noise of the hanky-waving fans in the Metrodome, stave off elimination when the team scores eight runs in the fifth and sixth frames of Game 6 to beat the Cardinals, 11-5. Minnesota’s southpaw-swinging Kent Hrbek hits a sixth-inning grand slam off left-handed Ken Dayley to put the contest out of reach for the Redbirds.
1992 In Game 6, Canada wins its first-ever World Series when the Blue Jays beat the Braves at Atlanta–Fulton County Stadium, 4-3. Toronto’s 41-year-old right fielder Dave Winfield’s 11th-inning double is the key hit in Toronto’s victory.
2020 Randy Arozarena sets the record for most playoff home runs in a single postseason after going deep for the ninth time, belting a fourth-inning round-tripper in the Rays’ 8-7 victory in Game 4 of the World Series against the Dodgers at Globe Life Field. The Tampa Bay DH surpasses the eight compiled by Barry Bonds (Giants, 2002), Carlos Beltran (Astros, 2004), Nelson Cruz (Rangers, 2011), and Corey Seager (Dodgers, 2020).
1945 Dodger President Branch Rickey announces that the team has signed two black players, shortstop Jackie Robinson and pitcher Johnny Wright, to play with Brooklyn’s Triple-A team in Montreal. The 26-year-old Negro League infielder will be the first black player in organized baseball since 1884.
1952 The Pacific Coast League announces its teams will play a reduced 176-game schedule next season. However, the PCL clubs will continue to play 180 contests next season, similar to the past two years.
“Touch ’em all Joe, you’ll never hit a bigger home run in your life” – Tom Cheek, radio voice of the Blue Jays.
Thanks to Joe Carter’s dramatic ninth-inning three-run homer over the left-field wall, the Blue Jays beat the Phillies 8-6 to win their second consecutive World Championship. The Toronto outfielder becomes the second player to end the World Series with a home run, joining Bill Mazeroski, whose Forbes Field’s round-tripper beat the Yankees in 1960.
2005 For the 14th time in World Series history, a walk-off home run ends the contest when Scott Podsednik’s ninth-inning blast in Game 2 at Chicago’s U.S. Cellular Field beats the Astros, 7-6. Bill Mazeroski remains the only player to accomplish the feat in the seventh game of the Fall Classic.
1845 The first known box score appears in the New York Morning News. Alexander Cartwright’s notation detailing the game comes a month after some of his fellow Knickerbockers wrote the first set of rules.
1910 After three straight defeats and trailing Philadelphia by a run in the ninth, the Cubs tie the score, winning 4-3 in ten innings for their only World Series victory. The A’s will easily take the Fall Classic in five games.
“But immortality is nontransferable. The papers said that the other players, and even the umpires on the field, begged him to come out and acknowledge us in some way, but he never had and did not now. Gods do not answer letters.” – JOHN UPDIKE
The New Yorker magazine publishes Hub Fans Bid Kid Adieu, an article by 28-year-old John Updike chronicling Ted Williams’ last game in the major leagues. The future Pulitzer Prize-winning author, among the 10,000 fans at the fabled game, ends the much-celebrated baseball essay with, “Gods do not answer letters,” as an explanation of the superstar not acknowledging the Fenway faithful after homering in his final major league at-bat.
1975 In a fitting finish to one of the most classic World Series ever played, the Reds beat the Red Sox in a thrilling Game 7 victory, 4-3. Future Hall of Fame infielder Joe Morgan’s ninth-inning bloop single into center field, scoring Ken Griffey, proves to be the decisive hit in the Fenway Park contest.
2011 In the Cardinals’ 16-7 rout of the Rangers in Game 3 of the Fall Classic, Albert Pujols hits three homers, drives in six runs, and collects five hits, equaling three World Series records. ‘Prince Albert’, who also set a Series mark with 14 total bases, connects on fastballs from three different Texas pitchers, joining Babe Ruth and Reggie Jackson for the most round-trippers in a World Series game.
2016 The Cubs win their first pennant since 1945, blanking the Dodgers 5-0 at Wrigley Field in Game 6 of the NLCS. Kyle Hendrick, who goes 7⅓ innings, and Aroldis Chapman combine to face the minimum 27 batters, allowing only two hits and one walk, making it the first time this has occurred in the postseason play since Don Larsen threw a perfect game in the 1956 World Series.
It’s a rematch between the Zac(k)s, as the Phillies send out RHP Zack Wheeler (2-0, 2.37 ERA postseason) to face the D-Backs’ RHP Zac Gallen (2-1, 4.96 ERA postseason). They met in Game One and Wheeler and the Fightin’ Phils came out on top.
1975 “Isn’t this great? Isn’t this great? This is the best game I’ve ever played in. Isn’t this great? People will remember this game forever. Isn’t this great?” – PETE ROSE, sharing his enthusiasm with teammates, opponents, and umpires.
In the bottom of the 12th inning of Game Six at Fenway Park, Red Sox’s backstop Carlton Fisk hits one of the most dramatic home runs in major league history, forcing a seventh game with the Reds. In 2002, this event, seen by 75.9 million viewers, will be chosen as one of baseball’s most memorable moments.
1980 In front of 65,838 fans at Veterans Stadium, the Phillies win their first World Series ever in the 98-year history of the franchise by defeating the Royals, 4-1, in Game 6. Winning pitcher Steve Carlton limits Kansas City to four hits in seven innings, and Tug McGraw hurls the last two frames to pick up the save.
2006 In the first matchup of rookies to start Game 1 of the World Series, Anthony Reyes bests Justin Verlander as the visiting Cardinals beat the Tigers at Comerica Park, 7-2. The 25-year-old right-hander allows two runs and four hits, striking out five Redbirds in eight innings.
2014 During Game 1 of the World Series, Laurence Leavy, known as the Marlin Man, is approached by a Royals representative, who informs him that the Kansas City owner is upset with his bright orange Miami jersey diverting attention from the home team on national television. After being offered various inducements, including autographed memorabilia and an opportunity to sit in the luxury boxes at Kauffman Stadium, the workers’ comp attorney refuses to remove his colorful garb, choosing to remain in his $8,000 seat behind home plate.
1964 Three days after resigning as manager of the World Champion Cardinals, Johnny Keane replaces Yogi Berra as the Yankees’ field boss. The new skipper of the Bronx Bombers will not fare well next year, leading the aging team to their first losing season since 1925, finishing 27 games behind the Twins with a 77-82 record.
1964 Albert “Red” Schoendienst, a favorite former player, is named the Cardinals’ new manager, replacing Johnny Keane, who resigned the day following the team’s Game 7 Fall Classic victory over New York. Red will compile a 1,041-955 record for the Redbirds during 12 full seasons and two stints in 1980 and 1990 as interim skipper, capturing a World Championship in 1967 and an NL pennant in 1968.
1988 The Dodgers become World Champions when Orel Hershiser limits the opposition to four singles in Game 5 of the World Series and beats the A’s, 5-1. The right-hander, who also won Game 2, is named the Most Valuable Player of the Fall Classic.
1994 Receiving all 28 first-place votes, Raul Mondesi (.306, 16, 56) is named the National League’s Rookie of the Year. The Los Angeles right fielder, who easily outdistanced Astros’ hurler John Hudek and Braves’ outfielder Ryan Klesko, is the third consecutive Dodger to win the award.
2004 After dropping the first three decisions, the Red Sox win their fourth consecutive ALCS game to win the American League pennant, beating the Yankees in the Bronx, 10-3. Johnny Damon’s two home runs, including a grand slam and Derek Lowe’s solid pitching performance, help Boston join the 1942 Maple Leafs and the 1975 Islanders as the only teams in the history of professional sports to overcome a 3-0 series deficit to win a seven-game series.