RHP Merrill Kelly (12-6, 3.01 ERA) takes the mound for the visiting D-Backs; he’ll face LHP Clayton Kershaw (8-3, 2.44 ERA). Andy McCullough has written an article in which he interviewed Kershaw’s pitching contemporaries to get a sense of how he remains as good as he is. Most of them are full of praise and admiration. It appears in The Athletic.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1935 The Cubs win their 16th consecutive game as they beat Carl Hubbell, completing a four-game sweep of the Giants. The mark is the most since the 1924 Dodgers won 15 straight games.
1964 With two outs in the bottom of the 16th inning, Willie Davis, after singling, swiping second, and advancing to third on a wild pitch, steals home, giving the Dodgers a 4-3 victory over Philadelphia. The fleet outfielder’s theft of the plate is in the latest frame in a National League game the feat has ever been accomplished and ties Hal Trosky’s major league record set in 1944.
1973 In the fourth inning of the Braves’ 4-1 loss at Dodger Stadium, Davey Johnson hits a solo shot off Andy Messersmith for his 43rd home run of the season, the 42nd as a second baseman. The round-tripper ties Cardinal infielder Rogers Hornsby’s 1922 record for the most home runs by a second baseman.
1973 Astros’ infielder Dave Campbell hits a first-inning two-run double against San Diego right-hander Clay Kirby to snap an 0-for-45 drought, tying a major league record set in 1909 by Bill Bergen, a catcher who played with Brooklyn. ‘Soup’, who will become a respected national baseball broadcaster, endured the futility while playing for three teams, combining a 17 at-bat hitless streak with the Padres and another 21 at-bat hitless streak for the Cardinals before hitting the two-bagger in his eighth at-bat with Houston.
2000 A Dodger fan, in addition to other court-ordered restrictions, has been banned from attending home games in Los Angeles for 18 months. The irate patron threw coffee in the face of a Mets fan who was cheering a grand slam hit by New York’s catcher Todd Pratt.
2014 LA’s Clayton Kershaw becomes the first 20-game winner of the season when the team routs Chicago at a windy Wrigley Field, 14-5. The 26 year-old southpaw, who has compiled a 20-3 (.870) record along with an ERA of 1.80. is the first Dodger hurler to reach the 20-win plateau twice since Claude Osteen accomplished the feat in 1969 and 1972.
1925 In the first game of a twin bill, Robins’ (Dodgers) starter Dazzy Vance no-hits the Phillies at Ebbets Field, 10-1. The Brooklyn hurler had one-hit the team from the City of Brotherly Love five days earlier.
2005 During the six-run second inning uprising by Colorado, each Dodger outfielder commits an error. The fielding of Ricky Ledee (lf), Jose Cruz Jr. (right field), and Jayson Werth (cf) contributes to the 6-4 loss to the Rockies. (The Dodgers finished 71-91 that year, in fourth place in the division. The Rockies finished last.
Also, in 1902, Johnny Evers, acquired to replace second baseman Bobby Lowe, who broke his ankle, joins shortstop Joe Tinker and first baseman Frank Chance on the Chicago infield, marking the first time the three Cubs’ infielders have played together. The legendary double play trio will be immortalized in Franklin Pierce Adams’ baseball poem, “Baseball’s Sad Lexicon,” better known as “Tinker to Evers to Chance”. (And only one of the three really had any business even being considered for induction into the Hall of Fame, as far as I’m concerned. There were a bunch of romantics or cronies on the Veterans Committee in 1946.)
RHP Tony Gonsolin (4-0, 1.62 ERA) gets the ball for the Dodgers and RHP Merrill Kelly (3-2, 3.49 ERA) gets it for the D-Backs. Gonsolin has already won as many games this season as he’s ever won in a single big league season. Kelly has the idential record so far this season as he had in all of the Covid-shortened year of 2020.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1957 Walter O’Malley and Horace Stoneham are given permission by the National League to negotiate deals with cities on the West Coast, with the proviso that the future location of their respective clubs, the Dodgers and the Giants, be known by October 1. The Brooklyn and New York owners both deny there is any significance to the unanimous vote other than being given an opportunity to explore all the available options for their possible relocation of their clubs.
1969 The day after he becomes a father, Randy Hundley hits a grand slam and a double, driving in five runs in Chicago’s 9-8 victory over San Francisco at Candlestick Park. The eight-pound, four-ounce baby boy named Todd will follow in his dad’s footsteps, becoming a major league catcher, receiving for the Mets, Dodgers, and the Cubs.
1989 With runners on second and third, no outs, and the Mets and Dodgers tied at 3-3 in the 12th inning, home plate umpire Bob Davidson calls a balk against Roger McDowell which scores the winning run in the Chavez Ravine contest. Dave Anderson is waved home when the New York reliever fails to pause and make a discernible stop.
2001 In an 11-inning slugfest with Colorado, LA catcher Paul Lo Duca goes 6-for-6 in the team’s 11-10 victory at Dodger Stadium. The backstop’s five singles and a three-run homer tie a National League record for hits in an extra-inning game.
2011 The game between Los Angeles and Florida continues as fans in a section of the upper deck seats at Dodger Stadium are evacuated due to a small fire in a nearby storage area. With plumes of smoke visible coming from the top level of the ballpark on the first base side, the crowd is informed by the public address announcer that it will not be necessary to evacuate the entire stadium.
RHP Merrill Kelly (3-1, 1.71 ERA) takes the ball for the D-Backs for Game Two of the twi-night double-header, while LHP Tyler Anderson (3-0, 4.40 ERA) goes for the Dodgers. Kelly’s won three of his last four starts, although he’s given up four runs in his last two. Anderson’s last start was awful; he gave up 7 runs on 10 hits. He dodged the loss as the Dodgers tied the game up but the bullpen gave up the lead.
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.
RHP Merrill Kelly (7-9, 4.30 ERA) goes for the D-Backs and LHP Julio Urías (17-3, 2.98 ERA) does the same for the Dodgers. With that W-L record and a falling ERA, Urías may be close to entering the Cy Young award conversation along with his teammates Max Scherzer and Walker Buehler.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1946 In Brooklyn, a giant swarm of gnats engulfs Ebbets Field at the end of the fifth inning of the second game of a doubleheader. The nightcap is called due to the bothersome insects and the impending darkness, resulting in a 2-0 Dodger victory over the Cubs.
1950 At Ebbets Field, Cardinal starter Cloyd Boyer hurts his arm while warming up and is replaced by Red Munger. The reliever goes the distance, beating the Dodgers, 6-2, getting credit for a complete game, but not for a game started.
1978 Don Sutton, in front of 47,188 fans at Dodger Stadium, throws a six-hitter to beat Atlanta, 5-0. Los Angeles, with tonight’s attendance, becomes the first major league team in history to draw three million fans at home.
1995 Ozzie Smith takes part in the 1,554th twin killing of his career to set a new big league record for double plays. The Cardinals’ shortstop’s wizardry isn’t enough to prevent the Redbirds’ 7-6 loss to the Dodgers at Busch Stadium.
RHP Merrill Kelly (5-7, 4.60 ERA) goes for the D-Backs and RHP Tony Gonsolin (1-0, 2.11 ERA) goes for the Dodgers.
On this day in Dodgers’ history:
1953 Giant rookie Al Worthington throws a four-hitter, blanking the Dodgers at Ebbets Field, 6-0. The whitewashing, which halts Brooklyn’s record NL streak of homering in 24 consecutive games and marks the only game this season the team will not a score, makes the 24 year-old right-hander the first National League freshman this century to throw consecutive shutouts at the start of a career, a feat that Karl Spooner will also match next season.
1958 The Los Angeles city council declares today ‘Take Me Out to the Ball Game Day’ to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the iconic baseball song. In a pregame ceremony at the LA Memorial Coliseum, the Dodgers honor lyricist Jack Norworth, presenting him with a lifetime pass to any American or National League game.
1978 At Jack Murphy Stadium, Steve Garvey becomes the first two-time MVP in All-Star history. The Dodger first baseman’s game-tying, two-run single and a triple help the National League to beat the AL, 7-3.
1980 The Dodgers sell Charlie Hough to the Rangers. The 32 year-old knuckleballer will spend 11 seasons with Texas, posting a 139-123 record along with an ERA of 3.68.
1998 Padre reliever Trevor Hoffman, brother of opposing manager Glenn Hoffman, saves the Padres’ 4-1 victory over the Dodgers. It’s the first time in major league history a player has faced his brother as the skipper of the opposing team.
Also, in 1976 At Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium thirty-four couples marry at home plate and a wrestling championship match takes place in a promotion billed as Headlocks and Wedlocks. The Braves take down the Mets, 9-8.
RHP Merrill Kelly (2-4, 5.24 ERA) pitches for the D-Backs and the Dodgers send LHP David Price (1-0, 5.06 ERA) to make his first start after eight appearances out of the bullpen.
Today in Dodgers’ history:
1979 Don Sutton becomes the franchise’s winningest pitcher when he is credited with the victory, tossing eight innings in the Dodgers 6-4 victory over the Reds at Riverfront Stadium. The 34 year-old right-hander’s 210th win surpasses the team mark established in 1969 by Don Drysdale.
Today is the first start of the year for the Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw, who scratched from Opening Day with back soreness. This will be his 34th career start against the Arizona team. He’ll face the D-Backs’ RHP Merrill Kelly (1-0, 1.17 ERA). Kelly took a no-hitter into the seventh inning of his last start against the Rangers.
Game highlights from yesterday:
On this day in Dodgers’ history:
1938 Bright yellow baseballs designed by Frederick Rah, who believes the visibility of the dandelion-hue sphere will help players avoid getting hit by a pitch, are used in the first game of a doubleheader. The one-game experiment draws mixed reactions and the Dodgers complete their sweep of the twin bill from the Cardinals, 6-2 and 9-3, using the traditional white ball in the nightcap.
1982 During a ceremony held in Cooperstown, NY, the United States Postal Service unveils a 20-cent stamp commemorating baseball great Jackie Robinson as part of its annual Black Heritage series. The Dodger infielder becomes the first individual baseball player to be depicted on a U.S postage stamp.
2002 Reds general manager Jim Bowden is fined by commissioner Bud Selig for the comments he made to reporters prior to yesterday’s game against the Dodgers comparing a baseball strike with the terrorist attacks of September 11th. Quickly realizing the use of such analogy was inappropriate and insensitive, the Cincinnati GM issues an immediate apology after the game.
2008 In the first game after the Manny Ramirez trade to the Dodgers, the Fenway Faithful enthusiastically welcome Jason Bay, the player replacing the Boston icon. The former Pirates outfielder doesn’t disappoint, tripling and scoring the winning run in the 12th inning of the Red Sox’s 2-1 victory over the A’s.
2017 The Dodgers lost to the Braves, ending their nine-game winning streak. Had they won it would have been the third time that season they’d have won ten straight. The bullpen gave up the go-ahead runs in the eighth inning at Sun Trust Park in Atlanta.