1915 Pirates third baseman Honus Wagner reaches Robins hurler Jeff Pfeffer for a grand slam in the eighth inning, helping Pittsburgh beat Brooklyn at Forbes Field, 8-2. The inside-the-park round-tripper makes the 41 year-old infielder the oldest player ever to hit a home run with the bases full, a record which will last until 1985.
1996 After a mild heart attack last month, Tommy Lasorda, 68 year-old Dodger manager of twenty years, announces his retirement due to his health. The future Hall of Fame skipper, who was named the National League Manager of the Year in 1983 and ’88, led Los Angeles to four pennants and two World Series championships during his 21 seasons at the helm.
1941 The Giants join the Dodgers and Senators in requiring their players wear protective headgear. The durable plastic liners, which are sewn into the hat, don’t provide a defense against defeats when the team drops both ends of a doubleheader to Pittsburgh at the Polo Grounds, 5-4 and 4-3.
1957 After an 86-minute delay, the first fog out in major league history occurs at Ebbets Field when the umpires call off the Dodgers’ game against the Cubs due to extremely poor visibility. Brooklyn has a 1-0 lead when the game is postponed with one out in the bottom of the second inning.
1968 The day after Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy is assassinated in Los Angeles, Maury Wills refuses to play in a 4-2 loss to the Dodgers, his former team. The 35 year-old shortstop stays in the Chavez Ravine training room, reading RFK’s book, To Seek a New World.
1994 Mike Piazza hits the longest home run recorded in the history of Joe Robbie Stadium when his first career grand slam is estimated to travel 477 feet. The catcher’s Ruthian blast, one of four Dodger round-trippers during the Florida contest, isn’t enough to thwart the Marlins’ 11-10 come-from-behind victory.
2006 On the sixth day of the sixth month of the sixth year of the century, the Dodgers score six runs in the sixth inning during the sixth game of the homestand, beating the Mets, 8-5. On 05/05/05, the Twins scored five times in the fifth inning en route to a 9-0 victory over the Indians.
2007 At Petco Park, Trevor Hoffman becomes the first reliever to save 500 games. It takes the all-time saves leader 10 ninth inning pitches, including an 87 mph fastball thrown past Russell Martin for the final out, to reach the milestone in the Padres’ 5-3 victory over the Dodgers.
Another event of note: in 1944 Baseball canceled its scheduled eight-game slate due to the Allied invasion of Normandy known as D-Day. The military operation has 60,000 Allied troops, including future Hall of Famer Yogi Berra and six minor leaguers who will be killed in action, landing along a heavily protected 50-mile stretch of the coastline in France to begin an offensive assault against Hitler and the Nazi party. Of less momentous note, in 2000, thanks to the Angels’ video crew playing a clip from the 1994 movie “Ace Ventura, Pet Detective” on the JumboTron, the Rally Monkey is born. With the words “Rally Monkey” superimposed over a monkey jumping up and down in the Jim Carrey movie, the crowd goes wild when Anaheim scores two runs in the bottom of the ninth to beat the Giants, 6-5.
RHP Luke Weaver (3-4, 4.24 ERA) takes the hill for the D-Backs and RHP Tony Gonsolin (2-1, 2.79 ERA) does the same for the Dodgers.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1951 Preacher Roe wins his 20th game of the season when the Dodgers beat the Pirates at Forbes Field, 3-1. The 36 year-old southpaw will finish the season with a 22-3 record.
2002 Chin-Feng Chen becomes the first Taiwan-born player to appear in the major leagues as he walks and scores as a pinch-hitter for the Dodgers against the Rockies. The 24 year-old first baseman-outfielder played for the 1990 Taiwan team which won the Little League World Series.
2008 Mets shortstop Jose Reyes, with his eighth-inning thievery in a 7-4 loss to the Braves at Shea Stadium, becomes the first player to have four straight seasons of 50 or more stolen bases playing for a New York area team, which also includes Yankees, Dodgers, and Giants. The accomplishment extends the infielder’s own record, as he is also the only Gotham major leaguer to achieve the feat for three consecutive years.
Also, in 1990 Mariner Ken Griffey and his son, Junior, become the first father and son to hit homers in the same major league game. The back-to-back blasts are given up by Angel hurler Kirk McCaskill.
RHP Walker Buehler (1-0, 3.60 ERA) goes to the Chase Field mound to face the home team’s RHP Luke Weaver. Coincidentally the last outing for each of these guys was against the other’s team. Buehler went five innings, gave up just two hits and walked just one while striking out six on September 2, while Weaver went 5 1/3 innings against the Dodgers on September 3, giving up four hits and two runs and taking the loss.
Here are Seager’s two home runs from Sunday’s game:
Old friend note: Dee Gordon has changed his name to Dee Strange-Gordon to honor his mother, who was killed by her boyfriend when Dee was just seven years old.
On this day in Dodgers’ history:
1955 The Dodgers clinch their eighth National League pennant with a 10-2 victory over the Braves at Milwaukee’s County Stadium. Brooklyn’s 17-game lead makes it the earliest date that a team has captured a flag in baseball history.
1957 Before their departure to play on the West Coast for next season, the Dodgers and Giants face one another for the final time in New York. The Jints beat the Bums at the Polo Grounds, 3-2, to finish the intense 68 year-old storied rivalry with a 656-606 advantage over Brooklyn in the battle between the boroughs.
1967 The Mets, at the urging of their fans, honor former Dodger pitcher Sandy Koufax, who retired last season when arthritis ended his career prematurely at the age of 30. The Brooklyn-born southpaw, who threw a no-hitter against New York in 1962, started twenty games against the Amazin’s, compiling a 17-2 record that included 14 complete games and 5 shutouts.
2007 Alex Rodriguez, hitting his 50th and 51st home runs, joins Babe Ruth (1920-54, 1921-59, 1927-60, 1928-54), Roger Maris (1961-61), and Mickey Mantle (1956-52, 1961-54) to become only the fourth player in Yankee history to hit 50 or more homers in a single season. The Yankee infielder’s second homer breaks the major league mark of 49 homers hit by a third baseman, shared with Mike Schmidt (Phillies-1980) and Adrian Beltre (Dodgers-2004).
2017 The Dodgers, who just a couple of months ago seemed poised to challenge the major league record of 116 wins in a season, lose again, their 8th straight defeat and 13th in 14 games, as they bow to the Rockies, 5 – 4. They blow an early 4 – 1 lead as D.J. LeMahieu hits a two-run double in the 5th to put Colorado ahead to stay. On a positive note, Yu Darvish records the 1000th strikeout of his career, punching out Carlos Gonzalez in the 5th, becoming the fastest starting pitcher to reach the mark, in 812 innings over 128 games.
RHP Luke Weaver (1-5, 8.23 ERA) pitches for the visitors. He had a couple of good starts but his last one was horrible: he gave up four runs on eight hits to the Giants in just three innings. He has the unenviable task of facing the Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (4-1, 1.80 ERA), who is, by some accounts, no longer an elite pitcher, just a very good one. Those doubters have so far been proven wrong.
How have the Dodgers built their team? Despite their obvious wealth, they’ve drafted most of their current stars.
Justin Turner is the Dodgers’ nominee for the 2020 Roberto Clemente Award, given to the player who best emulates the Pirate superstar’s philanthropy and community service. Clemente died delivering supplies to earthquake victims in Nicaragua in 1972. Here are all the nominees.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1917 Grover Cleveland Alexander goes the distance in both games of the Phillies’ doubleheader sweep of Brooklyn at Ebbets Field. In his 18 innings of work, the Philadelphia right-hander limits the Dodgers to seven hits en route to posting 5-0 and 9-3 victories in the twin bill.
1978 At Dodger Stadium, Lee Mazzilli becomes the first Mets player to hit a home run from both sides of the plate in a game. The center fielder’s first and seventh inning blasts, respectively hit off southpaw Tommy John and right-hander Charlie Hough, pace the last-place club to an 8-5 victory.
LHP Julio Urias (0-0, 1.80 ERA) takes the hill for the Dodgers. He walked three and struck out three in five innings in his first start. He’ll face the D-Backs’ RHP Luke Weaver (0-1, 16.20 ERA), who gave up six runs on seven hits in his first start, walking two and striking out six.
Mookie Betts’ throw may make us forget Yasiel Puig:
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1906 After pitching 10.2 innings of no-hit ball, Harry McIntire yields a single to Pirates second baseman Claude Ritchey. The Dodgers and McIntire lose the game in the 13th on an unearned run, 1-0.
1924 Dazzy Vance strikes out seven consecutive batters to establish a major league record when the Brooklyn Robins defeat the Cubs at Ebbets Field, 4-0. The future Hall of Famer, who will compile a 28-6 record for the Brooks this season, will lead the National League in strikeouts with 262.
1957 Gil Hodges, in a 12-3 win over the Cubs, hits his 13th and last career grand slam in Brooklyn Dodger history. The first baseman’s bases-loaded shot off Dick Littlefield establishes a new National League record, previously shared by Rogers Hornsby and Ralph Kiner.
2011 After popping out in a pinch-hitting appearance, Craig Counsell remains without a hit in his last 45 at-bats, tying the longest single-season hitless streak by a position player in history, established by Brooklyn backstop Bill Bergen in 1909. The major league record is 0-for-70, established in 1970 by Bob Buhl, a pitcher who toiled with the Braves and Cubs that season. Counsell and Bergen’s record for position players has since been surpassed by the Orioles’ Chris Davis, who got it up to 54 straight hitless ABs in 2019 before getting a hit on April 13.
2015 Clayton Kershaw strikes out Mike Trout looking with a wicked curveball, marking the first time that reigning MVPs have faced one another in a major league game. The interleague contest between the two LA teams ends with Dodger southpaw keeping the Angel outfielder 0-for-3 while hurling eight innings in the team’s 3-1 victory over the Halos at Chavez Ravine.
25-year-old RHP Luke “Dream” Weaver debuts for the D-Backs in this day game, while 24-year-old RHP Walker Buehler does so for the Dodgers. Weaver came up with the Cardinals in 2016 and has a record of 15-17 with a 4.79 ERA in 233 career innings since then, including a 7-11, 4.95 ERA record last season. He came to Arizona in the Paul Goldschmidt trade last winter. Buehler came up with the Dodgers in 2017 and has compiled a 9-5, 2.95 ERA in 146 career innings since then. Buehler had a somewhat abbreviated spring training while saying his arm didn’t “feel right,” so it’s unclear how fully ready he is.
Three Dodgers or former Dodgers are featured in these defensive highlights from yesterday:
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1948 At Ebbets Field No. 2, the Dodgers play their first exhibition game at Dodgertown in Vero Beach, which will remain the team’s home for 61 years. Amidst much fanfare, including Governor Millard Caldwell throwing the ceremonial first pitch, Jackie Robinson homers in the first inning as Brooklyn beats its top farm club, the Montreal Royals, 5-4.
2018 Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts, who goes 3-for-4 in the team’s 3-2 victory over the Rays at Tropicana Field, becomes the first American Leaguer to have multiple extra-base hits in the first three games of the season. In 2015, Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez also accomplished the feat, collecting at least two hits in each of LA’s first three contests when he compiled ten hits his first 14 at-bats of the season.
The Cardinals have moved Luke Weaver to the bullpen and replaced him with tonight’s starter, rookie RHP Daniel Poncedeleon (whose name seems to be the equivalent of Fred Meriwetherlewis). He’s 0-0 with a 2.04 ERA on the year, and in his one start he threw seven scoreless innings, walked three and struck out three but did not get a decision. His opponent will be the Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu (3-0, 1.77 ERA), whose last start was remarkably good — he pitched six scoreless innings while giving up just three hits and striking out six in his first appearance after three months on the disabled list.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1975 The Reuschel brothers of the Cubs join forces to blank the Dodgers, 6-0. Rick goes 6.1 innings, and Paul finishes the game for the first shutout thrown by siblings.
1990 The Phillies overcome an eight-run deficit, scoring nine runs in the top of the ninth inning to beat the Dodgers, 12-11. John Kruk’s pinch-hit three-run homer ties the game, and two batters later, Carmelo Martinez’s double plates Rod Booker with the eventual winning run in the Chavez Ravine contest.
2005 Florida suspends their bat boy for six games after the 11 year-old accepts former Marlin and current Dodger hurler Brad Penny’s $500 dare to drink a gallon of milk in less than an hour without throwing up. The Milk Processor Education Program will promise to pay off the dare and to cover the lost wages resulting from the suspension if the sixth grader, who is able to drink the quantity in the allotted time but cannot keep it down, agrees to drink three glasses every 24 hours.
Whoa. The Nationals have apparently thrown in the towel on this season. They just made two trades for very little in return: Matt Adams to the Cardinals for cash and Daniel Murphy to the Cubs for cash or a PTBNL and another minor leaguer.