clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Elephant Rumblings: Jackie Robinson Day!

New, 24 comments

MLB news roundup

Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images

A’s Coverage:

Best of AN:

MLB News:

Jackie Robinson Day:

Baseball Interest Stories:

Today in Baseball History:

  • 1942 - At Sportsman’s Park in St. Louis, Hiram “Hi” Bithorn becomes the first Puerto Rican to play in major league baseball. The Cubs right-handed pitcher from Santurce makes a relief appearance in the 4 - 2 loss to the Cardinals.
  • 1947 - 28-year-old Jackie Robinson makes a historic debut for the Brooklyn Dodgers, becoming the first African-American to play major league baseball in the 20th century. Robinson goes 0 for 3 in his debut, but scores the deciding run in a 5 - 3 victory over the Boston Braves at Ebbets Field. He handles 11 chances at first base, a new position for him. Coach Clyde Sukeforth, interim manager and the man credited with first scouting Robinson, guides the Dodgers to two victories before stepping down. Robinson is the first black player to appear in the majors since 1884.
  • 1957 - U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower officially opens the season by tossing out the first ball at Griffith Stadium in Washington, D.C. The ball is the 10 millionth Spalding baseball to be used in major league play.
  • 1958 - Major League Baseball comes to California as the transplanted Giants and Dodgers play the first game on the Pacific Coast. The Californian contest at San Francisco’s Seals Stadium sees Ruben Gómez blanking Los Angeles and Don Drysdale. Daryl Spencer hits the first home run and Orlando Cepeda also homers in the Giants’ 8 - 0 victory in front of 23,448 fans.
  • 1968 - At the Astrodome, the New York Mets and Houston Astros play the longest game in National League history. The six-hour and six-minute contest, in which each team has 79 at-bats and 11 hits, ends in the 24th inning when Bob Aspromonte’s grounder goes through the legs of shortstop Al Weis as the Astros win, 1 - 0. It sets the mark as the longest NL game played to completion, the longest major league night game, and the first 23 innings are the longest major league scoreless game. The game ties the American League’s longest complete game (Philadelphia Athletics 4, Boston Americans 1, in 24 innings on September 1, 1906).
  • 1972 - Reggie Jackson sports a mustache as the Oakland Athletics top the Minnesota Twins, 4 - 3, in 11 innings. Jackson is the first major league player with facial hair since Frenchy Bordagaray in 1936. Jackson starts a trend with Oakland, as owner Charlie Finley eventually encourages all of his players to grow mustaches. By the end of the season, the Athletics will become known as the “Mustache Gang”.
  • 1997 - The 50th anniversary of Jackie Robinson’s breaking the color barrier in major league baseball is celebrated before 54,047 at Shea Stadium during a game between the Mets and the Dodgers. U.S. President Bill Clinton and Jackie’s widow, Rachel Robinson, both speak during the 35-minute presentation, but the surprise of the evening occurs when acting Commissioner Bud Selig announces that Robinson’s number 42 will be retired in perpetuity for every team.
  • 2004 - Fifty-seven years after the historic event, major league baseball begins the tradition of Jackie Robinson Day, an annual celebration marking the day the color line was broken. At big league parks across the country there are ceremonies honoring the ground-breaking Brooklyn Dodgers second baseman, including Commissioner Bud Selig joining his widow, Rachel Robinson, for a Shea Stadium tribute.
  • 2009 - Every player in Major League Baseball wears number 42 today on Jackie Robinson Day, in honor of the anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking the color line. The practice will be repeated in future years.

Webby Watch:

Update on A’s minor league manager Webster Garrison

Best of Twitter:

MLB commits to paying employees through May

On the topic of playing in empty stadiums

Outlook not so good

...

RIP

Here’s a different Buckner highlight, for a change.

However, this is the closest we’re getting to real baseball today