RHP Walker Buehler (5-1, 2.89 ERA) pitches for the Dodgers this afternoon; he’ll face RHP Josiah Gray (4-3, 4.36 ERA) of the Nats. Buehler’s record is sparkling but he says he’s not yet “attacking the strike zone” as he has in prior seasons. This is Gray’s second season in the league; he’s never faced the Dodgers before.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1941 ‘Big Poison’ Paul Waner is signed by the Braves after being released by Brooklyn. The former Dodger joins his brother ‘Little Poison’ Lloyd on the Boston roster.
1947 Carl Furillo hits a three-run homer as a pinch-hitter in the first frame of the Dodgers’ 4-3 ten-inning loss to Philadelphia at Ebbets Field. The unusual substitution occurs when Phillies manager Ben Chapman uses his right-handed starter Al Jurisch to pitch only to Brooklyn’s first two hitters, Pee Wee Reese and Jackie Robinson, and then brings in southpaw Oscar Judd, who had been warming up from the start of the game, to face the next three lefty hitters, Pete Reiser, Dixie Walker, and Gene Hermanski, the batter replaced by Furillo.
1973 In a 19-inning marathon, LA outfielder Willie Davis collects six hits in a 7-3 loss to the Mets at Dodger Stadium. The two clubs establish a National League mark by hitting into a combined nine double plays.
2000 Sixteen Dodger players and three coaches are suspended by the commissioner’s office for going into the stands during the Wrigley Field scuffle with fans on May 16. The suspensions totaling 60 games for players and 24 games for coaches are the harshest penalties ever handed down by major league baseball.
In the final game of the home stand RHP Zach Davies (2-1, 3.57 ERA) takes the ball for the D-Backs and RHP Walker Buehler (4-1, 2.81 ERA) does the same for the Dodgers.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1929 In the doubleheader played at Philadelphia’s Baker Bowl, the teams combine to score a record fifty runs when the Dodgers outlast the Phillies, 20-16, before dropping the nightcap to the home team 8-6. In the opener, Brooklyn’s Johnny Frederick crosses the plate five times, giving him the major league mark of scoring eight runs in two consecutive games.
1931 Dodgers’ outfielder Babe Herman hits for the cycle for the first of two times this season. In 1933, as a member of the Cubs, he will again hit for the cycle, making him and Bob Meusel the only major leaguers to have accomplished the feat three times since 1900.
1942 Night games in New York are banned for the duration of WW II, leaving fans in the dark about the status of the All-Star Game scheduled to be played at the Polo Grounds on the evening of Monday, July 6. The prohibition of nighttime tilts, announced by NYC Police Commissioner Lewis J. Valentine, will change the starting times for 28 contests involving the Dodgers and Giants. (The first night game at Yankee Stadium will be played in 1946.)
1998 With a 6-3 victory over the Orioles, the Devil Rays become only the second expansion team in major league history to sweep an away four-game series. The 1993 Colorado Rockies, who did it against the Dodgers, is the other team to accomplish this feat.
Another historical note: In 2004 At the age of 40, southpaw Randy Johnson becomes the oldest pitcher to throw a perfect game when the Diamondbacks beat the Braves, 2-0. The ‘Big Unit’ joins Cy Young, Jim Bunning, Hideo Nomo, and Nolan Ryan as the only hurlers to throw no-hitters in both leagues and creates the longest time span between no-no’s, having first accomplished the feat against the Tigers in June of 1990.
Walker Buehler is taking Clayton Kershaw’s spot in the rotation today. Why? Kershaw’s got an inflammation in the sacroiliac joint in his pelvis. “The Dodgers placed the three-time Cy Young Award winner on the injured list Friday due to inflammation in his SI joint.” They’re not yet sure how long he might be out.
The Phillies send RHP Kyle Gibson (3-1, 2.94 ERA) to the mound to face the Dodgers’ RHP Walker Buehler (4-1, 1.96 ERA).
1947 During the pregame infield practice, a barrage of racial slurs is directed at Jackie Robinson by the Cincinnati fans during the Dodgers’ first visit to Crosley Field this season. Brooklyn shortstop Pee Wee Reese, captain of the team and a Southerner from Kentucky with friends attending the game, engages the black infielder in conversation, and then put his arm around his teammate’s shoulder, a gesture that stuns and silences the crowd.
Statue of Jackie Robinson and Pee Wee Reese outside MCU Park, 08/02/10: zoom-lens close-up of Pee Wee’s arm around Jackie (IMG_1908)
Photo from Flickr by Gary Dunaier
1952 Larry Miggins hits the first of his two major league home runs, going deep off Preacher Roe in the fourth inning of the Cardinals’ 14-8 loss to the Dodgers at Ebbets Field. The round-tripper hit by the Bronx-born outfielder, who had once shared his dream of playing in big leagues during a prep school assembly with a buddy with aspirations to be a baseball broadcaster, is called by an overwhelmed Vin Scully, Brooklyn’s play-by-play announcer who had wondered that day with his friend “what the odds against that would be.”
1958 San Francisco teammates Willie Mays and Darryl Spencer each have four long hits, driving in four and six runs, respectively, in the team’s 16-9 victory over the Dodgers at LA’s Memorial Coliseum. The Giants’ center fielder and shortstop combine for 28 total bases, with Mays hitting two homers, two triples, a single, and Spencer adding two round-trippers, a three-bagger, and a double to the offensive outburst.
2013 Thanks to a seventh-grade history class project, a three-mile stretch of the Kansas K-79 highway, from K-16 highway to Circleville, is designated by the Kansas legislature as the Barnes Brothers Memorial Highway in honor of Ozzie and Virgil, who grew up in the community and played with the Braves, Giants, and Dodgers in the 1910-20s. The McAlister middle schoolers’ research brought to light the many major league accomplishments of the two siblings, including being participants in first brother matchup in big league history.
RHP Walker Buehler (3-1, 2.12 ERA) climbs the hill to face the Cubs’ RHP Marcus Stroman (1-3, 5.13 ERA) in the Dodgers’ first appearance on Sunday Night Baseball this season. In Buehler’s last start he threw a complete game three-hit shutout, the third complete game of his career. Stroman has made five starts this season and lost the middle three, but he won his last game, going seven innings and giving up just two hits and no runs.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1941 An Army-Navy Relief game between New York’s two National League teams raises over $60,000. Dolph Camilli’s homer is the difference in the Ebbets Field exhibition as the Dodgers edge the Giants, 7-6.
2012 Josh Hamilton becomes the 16th major leaguer to hit four home runs in one game when he blasts an 0-2 pitch over the Camden Yards centerfield fence in the eighth inning of the Rangers’ 10-3 victory over Baltimore. The Texas outfielder, who connected each time with a man on base, also hits a double to set the American League’s single-game record for total bases with 18, one shy of Shawn Green’s major league mark of 19 established in 2002 with the Dodgers.
In a sign that the apocalypse cannot be far away, in 2012 the New York State Senate congratulates Mr. Met with a voice approved resolution, honoring the larger-than-life bobblehead for being named the best mascot in the U.S. in a fan survey conducted by the Marketing Arm. The Amazins’ spherical symbol of cheer, who defeated the popular Phillie Phanatic in the poll, is commended by the legislative body for having his legacy serve as “a sterling example for all mascots”.
LHP Eduardo Rodríguez (0-1, 5.03 ERA) goes for the Tigers and RHP Walker Buehler (2-1, 2.55 ERA) goes for the Dodgers. This will be Rodríguez’s fifth start; he’s only made it to the fifth inning once in the previous four and he lost that game. Buehler pitched a complete game three-hit shutout in his last start.
On this day in Dodgers’ history:
1906 At Brooklyn’s Washington Park, Philadelphia southpaw John Lush strikes out 11 batters en route to throwing a 6-0 no-hitter against the Superbas, a team that will become known as the Dodgers in 1911. There will not be another no-hitter by a Phillies pitcher until Jim Bunning’s perfect game against the Mets in 1964.
1920 The longest game ever played ends after 26 innings in a 1-1 tie, with Brooklyn Robin right-hander Leon Cadore and the Braves hurler Joe Oeschger, also right-handed, both go the distance for their respective clubs. Boston third baseman Charlie Pick establishes the major league record for hitless at-bats in one game, going 0-for-11 in the marathon.
1965 Tommy Davis, trying to break up a double play, dislocates and breaks his ankle sliding into second base in the fourth inning of the team’s 4-2 victory over the Giants at Dodger Stadium. The two-time National League batting champ will not play again this year until he appears as a pinch-hitter in the season finale.
1972 Philadelphia starter Dick Selma goes the distance, three-hitting the Dodgers at Chavez Ravine, 2-1. The victory is the fifth consecutive complete-game thrown by a Phillies starter, with Steve Carlton, Woody Fryman, Barry Lersch, and Bill Champion each finishing their game without help from the bullpen in team’s previous four contests.
1974 Tom Seaver strikes out 16 Dodgers, giving up only three hits in twelve innings of work, but gets a no-decision when the Mets lose the Chavez Ravine contest in 14 innings, 2-1. Steve Garvey strokes a walk-off single to center field off Harry Parker, scoring Billy Buckner with the winning run.
2000 The Braves establish a franchise-record 14th straight victory, with a 2-1 win at Dodger Stadium. Quilvio Veras’ third-inning homer proves to be the difference.
2009 With two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, Duaner Sanchez walks Russell Martin, who checks his swing on a full count with the bases loaded, bringing home the winning run in L.A.’s 1-0 triumph over the Padres. The win keeps the Dodgers undefeated at home, extending their record at Chavez Ravine to 8-0 with their ‘walk-off’ victory.
2012 With the final payment received on the record $2.15-billion purchase price, Frank McCourt’s turbulent era of the Dodger ownership comes to an end. The team’s new ownership group, fronted by Magic Johnson and incoming club president Stan Kasten, includes Mark Walter, chief executive of the Chicago-based Guggenheim Financial, who arranged the financing and holds a controlling interest in the franchise.
The Dodgers continue their road trip tonight with RHP Walker Buehler (1-1, 4.02 ERA) trying to get his second win and his ERA down. He’s gone no longer than 5 2/3 innings so far this season. He’ll face the D-Backs’ RHP Merrill Kelly (1-0, 0.59 ERA), who’s been increasing his innings in each start and got a win in the last one, giving up a run on six hits to the Nationals over 6 1/3 innings. That was the first run he’d given up this year.
Today in Dodgers history:
1937 Cliff Melton becomes the first rookie to fan at least 10 batters in his major league debut, finishing with 13 strikeouts in a complete-game loss to the Braves at the Polo Grounds. The 25 year-old southpaw, who loses the 3-1 contest due to the poor defense of the Giants in the ninth inning, will hold the rookie record for K’s in his debut until Dodger freshman Karl Spooner whiffs 15 batters in his first major league start in 1954.
1958 In front of 60,635 fans at the Los Angeles Coliseum, the Dodgers, who beat St. Louis, 5-2, set a National League record for the largest crowd to attend a night game during the regular season. The mark will be broken next season when 61,552 fans show up on Opening Night at the Coliseum to watch their team defeat the Redbirds again.
1967 Jim Lefebvre commits three errors in the fourth frame, paving the way for the Braves’ 7-1 victory at Dodger Stadium. The Los Angeles third baseman commits a fourth error, booting Hank Aaron’s grounder in the top of the ninth inning.
1975 LA hurler Andy Messersmith strokes three doubles at Candlestick Park. The trio of two-baggers contributes to the Dodgers’ 6-5 victory over San Francisco with the right-hander scoring two runs and driving in another en route to his victory.
1976 During the fourth inning of the game being played at Dodger Stadium, Rick Monday becomes a national hero when he takes away an American Flag about to be set on fire by the two trespassers (a father and son) in the outfield. The Cubs’ 30 year-old fly chaser, who served six years in the Marine Reserves, will be presented the flag a month later in a pregame ceremony at Wrigley Field by L.A. executive Al Campanis as a gesture of patriotic thanks.
1995 The 257-day strike ends when the Dodgers beat the Marlins 8-7. The work stoppage caused last season to end early, forced the cancellation of the World Series, and delayed the opening of this season.
The visiting Braves give the ball to LHP Max Fried (0-2, 5.73 ERA). He’ll face the Dodgers’ RHP Walker Buehler (1-0, 3.38 ERA). Fried’s first two starts have been pretty bad: he gave up eight hits and five runs to the Reds on April 7 and seven runs and three hits to the Nats a week later. Buehler won his first start, going five innings, and had no decision in his second, in which he went 5 2/3 innings.
1890 The Brooklyn Bridegrooms, who will later be known as the Dodgers, play their first National League game. The former American Association team loses to the Beaneaters, who will become known as the Braves in 1912, at Boston’s South End Grounds, 15-9.
1938 During the first inning, both Dodgers’ Ernie Koy and Phillies’ Emmett Mueller homer in their first major league at-bats. The pair of rookies will collectively hit a total 42 home runs during their nine seasons in the major leagues.
1956 In the first major league game ever played in New Jersey, the Dodgers begin their Jersey City home game experiment with a 10-inning 5-4 victory over the Phillies at Roosevelt Stadium. A sparse crowd of 12,214, limited by inclement weather, sees Brooklyn backstop Roy Campanella tie the score in the tenth inning with his 1000th career hit, a double down the left field line.
1968 Nolan Ryan makes quick work of the Dodgers when he strikes out the side on nine pitches in the top of the third inning of the Mets’ 3-2 loss at Shea Stadium. The 21 year-old New York fireballer, who will also accomplish the feat with the Angels in 1972, strikes out 11 batters in 7.1 frames, including Claude Osteen, Wes Parker, and Zoilo Versalles, the victims of his immaculate inning.
2000 Veteran hurler Orel Hershiser ties a major league mark, equaled by 19 others, hitting four batters in one game. Astro Richard Hidalgo also ties a modern major league record by getting hit three times in a game, twice by Hershiser and a third time by Dodger reliever Matt Herges.
2002 Mariners’ third baseman Jeff Cirillo ties the major league record for consecutive errorless games at the hot corner by playing his 99th contest without a miscue. John Wehner, a journeyman infielder with the Dodgers, Pirates, and Marlins, established the mark during a span of eight-plus seasons.
The visiting Braves send RHP Huascar Ynoa (0-1, 15.00 ERA) to the hill to face the Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (1-0, 0.00 ERA). Ynoa’s first outing of the season was miserable, as his ERA shows: he gave up five hits on seven runs in three innings against the Nationals. He’ll try to recover tonight. Kershaw, on the other hand, had an outing so brilliant there was much discussion that he should have remained in the game to try to complete it, since he was perfect through seven innings: no runs, no hits, no walks, no errors. As we all know, he left after the seventh.
On this date in Dodgers’ history:
1925 At his Waldorf-Astoria apartment, Dodgers’ owner Charles H. Ebbets dies of a heart attack at the age of 65. Later in the day, his team opens the home season in Brooklyn losing to the Giants at Ebbets Field, 7-0.
1939 In Brooklyn, Red Barber calls the action in the first broadcast of a regular-season Dodger game, a 7-3 loss to New York at Ebbets Field. The future Hall of Fame announcer was brought in from Cincinnati by the team’s new president, Larry MacPhail, who had hired the ‘Ol Redhead’ when he was in a similar post with the Reds.
1947 Dodger president Branch Rickey names team scout Burt Shotton to replace Leo Durocher, who was suspended ten days ago by Commissioner Happy Chandler for acts “unbecoming to a major league manager.” Brooklyn’s new 62 year-old skipper reluctantly takes over the team two games into the season and will manage the club for one year in his street clothes along with wearing the team’s hat and jacket.
1950 Vin Scully calls the first game of his illustrious 67-year career with the Dodgers, detailing Brooklyn’s 9-1 defeat to the Phillies on Opening Day at Philadelphia’s Shibe Park. The 22-year old broadcaster, who will be awarded the Commissioner’s Historic Achievement Award by Bud Selig in 2014, will become the team’s primary announcer just three seasons later.
1950 The Phillies play their first game with name official changed back from Blue Jays, routing the Dodgers at Shibe Park, 9-1. The team wears red pinstriped uniforms designed by manager Eddie Sawyer that are reminiscent of club’s look in the early 1900s.
1952 On Opening Day in Brooklyn, Willie Mays is knocked unconscious when he smashes into the Ebbets Field wall after chasing pinch hitter Bob Morgan’s seventh-inning, two-out base-loaded line drive into the gap in left field. All three Dodgers base runners cross the plate but do not score when the motionless Giants center fielder comes to his feet and jogs into the dugout, apparently unhurt, having held onto the ball after making a fantastic catch for the third out to end the inning.
1958 At the Los Angeles Coliseum in front of a National League record crowd of 78,672, the Dodgers play their first game in the City of Angels. Carl Erskine gets the win, besting Al Worthington and the Giants, 6-5.
1959 Branch Rickey, former general manager of the Cardinals, Dodgers, and Pirates, is appointed the president of the Continental League. The third potential major league never materializes, but helps to accelerate the expansion of the existing leagues, including putting a National League team in New York to fill the void created by the Giants’ and the Dodgers’ departure to the west coast in 1958.
1964 L.A. southpaw Sandy Koufax throws the second of his two career immaculate innings when he strikes out the side on nine pitches. Although Leo Cardenas, Johnny Edwards, and Jim Maloney all strike out quickly in the top of the third inning, Cincinnati will score all of the game’s runs in the next frame, thanks to a three-run homer hit by Deron Johnson, to beat the Dodgers in the Chavez Ravine contest, 3-0.
1966 Dodgers shortstop Maury Wills singles to center off future Hall of Famer Robin Roberts, becoming the first batter to hit on artificial turf in a major league game. The Astrodome’s new playing surface, called Chemgrass initially by its manufacturer, the Monsanto Company, couldn’t be made quickly enough, so the season begins with the artificial material only on the infield with the outfield remaining painted dirt until July.
2008 The Dodgers announce Joe Beimel has been selected by fans, in an online poll during Spring Training, as the player whose likeness will now be used in an August 12 bobblehead promotion. The 30 year-old southpaw reliever, considered a long shot for the honor, gets the nod due to a strong internet campaign orchestrated by his parents, Ron and Marge.
Tonight is the home opener for the Dodgers. The national anthem will be sung by Lupita Infante and there will be a flyover from two F-35 planes. The first pitch will be thrown by Dodgers Hall of Fame broadcaster Jaime Jarrín. Players representing each decade of Dodger Stadium’s existence will accompany Jarrín.
The visiting Reds send RHP Luis Cessa to the mound for his first start of the year. He came up to the big leagues with the Yankees in 2016 and was traded to the Reds in mid-season last year. This will be his 20th career start; his other 137 appearances have been in relief. The Dodgers hand the ball to RHP Walker Buehler (1-0, 3.50 ERA); he went five innings in the Dodgers’ first game of the year last week.
Take note that tomorrow’s game will be broadcast (or maybe I should say narrowcast) on AppleTv, not on SportsNetLA.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1931 At Braves Field, Jack Quinn becomes the oldest pitcher to start an Opening Day game. The 47 year-old Robin right-hander gives up six runs on nine runs in six innings of work, taking the loss when Brooklyn bows to Boston, 7-4.
1968 Jim Bunning becomes the first pitcher since Cy Young to collect a thousand strikeouts in both leagues when he whiffs eight Dodgers during his first win for the Pirates, a 3-0 complete-game victory in Chavez Ravine. The 37 year-old right-hander, acquired from the Phillies in December, sent 1,406 American League batters back to the bench with a bat in their hands for nine seasons while pitching for the Tigers at the start of his Hall of Fame career.
1993 After establishing the all-time career major league record last night with his 358th save, Cardinal reliever Lee Smith breaks the National League mark, recording his 301st in the Senior Circuit when he tosses a perfect 15th frame in the Cardinals’ 2-1 victory at Dodger Stadium. The right-handed reliever will extend the big league mark to 478, pitching for the Cubs (1980-1987), Red Sox (1988-1990), Cardinals (1990-1993), Yankees (1993), Orioles (1994), Angels (1995-1996), Reds (1996), and Expos (1997).
2004 In the game played after teammate Mike Mussina earns his 200th career victory, Kevin Brown, who was obtained from the Dodgers for Jeff Weaver and two minor-leaguers in an off-season trade, reaches the same plateau, beating the Devil Rays, 5-1. It is the first time in baseball history members of the same pitching staff have won their 200th career victory in consecutive starts.
After an off-season which induced doubt that this season would begin even close to its scheduled date, here we are. The Dodgers send RHP Walker Buehler to make the first Opening Day start of his career. He’ll face the Rockies’ LHP Kyle Freeland. This is the second year in a row the Dodgers have opened the season on the road in Colorado.
The Dodgers only made one major addition to their starting lineup — Freddie Freeman at first base. He had a slash line of .295/.384/.509 with the Braves last year. The Rockies added Kris Bryant and Randal Grichuk to their outfield. Bryant had a slash line of .265/.353/.481 between the Cubs and Giants in 2021, while Grichuk had a slash line of .241/.281/.423 with the Blue Jays.
Today in Dodgers history:
1966 Thanks to the Monsanto chemical company’s experimental nylon playing surface, the Astros and Dodgers play baseball’s first game on synthetic grass. The original plan to play all-dirt field, necessitated by the need to paint the Astrodome’s glass panes to reduce the glare, which prevented natural grass from growing, is alleviated by the use of ‘AstroTurf.’
1974 Braves outfielder Hank Aaron passes Babe Ruth as the all-time home run leader with his 715th, going deep in the fourth inning off Dodger hurler Al Downing in Atlanta’s home opener. ‘Hammerin’ Hank’ equaled the Bambino’s mark on Opening Day in Cincinnati.
1994 Kent Mercker, throwing his first major league complete game, no-hits the Dodgers, 6-0 at Chavez Ravine. The Braves left-hander was one of the three Atlanta pitchers, along with Mark Wohlers and Alejandro Pena, to throw a combined no-no against the Padres in 1991.
1994 Chan Ho Park becomes the first Korean to play in the major leagues when he makes his pitching debut at Chavez Ravine. In one inning of work, the 21-year-old Kongju City native gives up two runs on one hit, walking two and striking out two batters in the Dodgers’ 6-0 loss to Atlanta.
2008 On the last Opening Day in the Queens ballpark, the Mets unveil a disc with William Shea’s name, honoring the namesake of their stadium. The New York attorney played an instrumental role in bringing the National League back to the Big Apple following the Giants and Dodgers’ departure after the 1957 season.
2015 Adrian Gonzalez becomes the first major league player to hit five home runs in the first three games of the season when he goes deep three times in the Dodgers’ 7-4 victory over San Diego at Chavez Ravine. The Los Angeles first baseman joins Carl Furillo (1955) and Jimmy Wynn (1974) as the only players in franchise history to have homered in the first three games of a campaign.
2019 Chris Davis breaks the record for the longest hitless streak in major league history at 0-for-47, surpassing Eugenio Velez’s dubious mark with the Giants and Dodgers in 2010-11. The Baltimore fans, who had begun regularly booing the Orioles outfielder with the $161 million fully guaranteed contract, were very supportive when he lined out to deep left field in the fifth inning in the game against the A’s to take his place in baseball infamy.
“I always thought, ‘Of course, Joe Buck’s going to be at Fox forever,’” Davis said. ‘“Joe Buck’s always going to be calling the World Series.’”
But Buck didn’t stay at Fox forever and he won’t call any more World Series. That job, officially as of Friday, belongs to Davis, the Dodgers’ TV play-by-play man. Davis was named to Fox’s lead play-by-play position upon Buck’s departure last month to ESPN. Hall of Famer John Smoltz will be his color analyst.