In front nearly 30,000 very enthusiastic fans at South Side Park in the season finale, the White Sox start Doc White, coming off a complete game, on only two days rest in an attempt to thwart the Tigers’ from clinching the pennant. Chicago’s efforts will fail with a 7-0 defeat to Detroit, who capture the AL flag by a half of a game ahead of the Cleveland Naps thanks to rule that doesn’t require a team to makeup a rainout game from earlier in the season.
The first unassisted triple play in National League history occurs when Braves' shortstop Ernie Padgett catches Phillies first baseman Walter Holke's line drive, doubles up James Tierney at second, and then tags Cliff Lee for the third out.
For only the second time in major league history, two 100-loss teams face one another when the 52-100 Braves beat the 50-102 Phillies in the first game of a season-ending doubleheader, 5-4. Boston, then known as the Beaneaters, was also part of the first occurrence of this rare type of matchup when the 50-100 club played the 45-103 team from Brooklyn in 1905.
In a 10-5 Game 4 victory over the Cardinals at Sportsman's Park, Yankee outfielder Babe Ruth becomes the first player to hit three home runs in a World Series game. History will repeat itself when the 'Sultan of Swat' once again goes deep three times against the Redbirds in St. Louis in the fourth game of the 1928 Fall Classic.
Senator outfielder Heinie Manush is ejected from Game 4 of the Fall Classic, after being called out at first base in Washington's 2-1 extra-inning loss to the Giants at Griffith Stadium. First base umpire Charlie Moran takes exception when the future Hall of Famer pulls on his bow tie, letting it snap back.
In Game 5 of the Fall Classic, Tiny Bonham goes the distance, limiting the Dodgers to just four hits to give the Yankees their 12th World Championship in franchise history. In one inning during the Bronx Bombers' 3-1 victory at Ebbets Field, the New York fireballing right-hander will need just three pitches to retire the side.
Cardinal batterymates and brothers Mort and Walker Cooper decide to play Game 2 of the World Series on the day their dad, Robert, dies at his home in Independence. After limiting the Yankees to six hits and winning the game, 4-3, Mort heads to Missouri while his younger brother, Walker, who has a 1-for-3 day behind the plate with an eighth inning single, will stay with the club until the Fall Classic is over.
In an effort to promote his nearby Billy Goat Tavern, William Sianis buys tickets to Game 4 of the Fall Classic for himself and Murphy, his pet goat. The bar owner becomes so upset when the Wrigley Field ushers ask his guest to leave, the Greek immigrant places a curse on the team, preventing the Cubs from ever winning a World Series again.
During Game 1 of the World Series, Whitey Kurowski is awarded home plate on a controversial obstruction call after he gets tangled up with Red Sox third baseman Pinky Higgins, giving the Cardinals a 2-1 lead in the eighth inning. The Red Sox rally in the ninth to tie the score, and Rudy York's home run in the tenth gives Boston an eventual 3-2 victory over the Redbirds at Sportsman's Park.
In Game 2 of the World Series, only one run is scored again, but Preacher Roe and the Dodgers win this contest at Yankee Stadium, 1-0. Gil Hodges' second inning single drives in Jackie Robinson to even up the Fall Classic at a game apiece.
In Game 4, Eddie Mathews' two-run shot off Bob Grim with one out in the bottom of the tenth inning at County Stadium gives the Braves a 7-5 victory, and knots the Fall Classic at two games apiece. The Milwaukee third baseman becomes the third major leaguer, joining Tommy Henrich (1949) and Dusty Rhodes (1954), to end a World Series game with a walk-off home run.
The largest crowd ever to attend a major league game, 92,706 fans, watches a nail biter as White Sox hurler Bob Shaw beats Sandy Koufax and the Dodgers, 1-0, in Game 5 of the Fall Classic.
The Dodgers complete a four-game World Series sweep of the Yankees as Sandy Koufax wins his second game, 2-1. Frank Howard leads the offense with a home run and a single, the only two hits Whitey Ford gives up, and New York's first baseman Joe Pepitone's error (loses a thrown ball in the white-shirted crowd) leads to the decisive run in the seventh inning.
"Hey, skip, bet you wish I was Jewish today, too." - DON DRYSDALE, commenting after the game about his poor performance on the mound with manger Walt Alston.
Sandy Koufax declines to pitch the first game of the World Series against the Twins because the game is scheduled on Yom Kippur, the most sacred of the Jewish holidays. As the Dodger southpaw attends shul and fasts on the Day of Atonement, Don Drysdale gives up seven runs in three innings in the team's 8-2 loss at Minnesota's Metropolitan Stadium.
Jim Palmer becomes the youngest player to pitch a shutout in the World Series when the 20 year-old Oriole right-hander blanks Sandy Koufax and the Dodgers, 6-0. The contest will become more memorable next month when Koufax surprises the baseball world by announcing his retirement, making this game his last major league appearance.
In the Game 2 loss to the Orioles at Dodger Stadium, Willie Davis establishes a World Series record by committing three errors in one game. The center fielder's blunders come on two consecutive plays in the fifth inning, the first by losing a fly ball in the sun, then by dropping the next fly ball, followed by overthrowing third base.
Despite three solo home runs off Yankees' ace Catfish Hunter by Kansas City's third baseman George Brett, the Bronx Bombers win Game 3 of the ALCS, beating the Royals, 6-5.
In the 163rd game of the season, 35 year-old knuckleballer Joe Niekro earns his 20th victory, going the distance to defeat the Dodgers, 7-1, in the winner-take-all contest for the NL West. With the win, the Astros hold on to capture their first title in the 19-year history of the franchise after losing a season-ending three game series to LA, (3-2, 2-1, and 4-3) that forced the one-game playoff.
In Game 1 of the ALDS in Kansas City, Mike Norris throws a six-hit complete game, blanking the Royals, 4-0. Oakland’s appearance in the playoffs makes Billy Martin the first skipper in baseball history to manage four franchises (Twins-1969, Tigers-1972, A's-1981, and Yankees 1976-78) into postseason play.
In the second game of the ALCS, Oriole hurler Mike Boddicker throws a five-hitter, beating the White Sox at Memorial Stadium, 4-0. The Baltimore right-hander, whose performance evens the series, establishes a playoff record when he strikes out 14 Chicago batters.
Steve Garvey's two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth inning gives the Padres a 7-5 walk-off win over the Cubs in Game 4 of NLCS. After losing the first two contests of the best-of-five NLCS, the victory brings the series to a decisive fifth game that San Diego will win to capture the National League pennant.
On the last day of the season, Yankee knuckleballer Phil Niekro becomes the 18th and oldest player in major league history to win his 300th victory when he blanks the Blue Jays, 8-0. The forty-six year and 188 days old pitcher, who will win 318 games, also surpasses Satchel Paige (46 yrs, 75 days) to become the oldest pitcher to throw a shutout in the big leagues.
David Cone ties a National League mark for strikeouts as he fans 19 Phillies en route to a 7-0 victory in the season's finale. The Mets right-hander finishes the campaign with a league-leading 241 strikeouts, making it second straight season he has led the circuit.
On Fan Appreciation Day at Shea Stadium, Howard Johnson drives in a run with a seventh-inning single to finish the season with a league-leading 117 RBIs. 'HoJo' is the first switch-hitter to lead the National League in runs batted in and the first Mets player to accomplish the feat.
After flying out as a pinch-hitter, Red Sox third baseman Wade Boggs completes the season hitting .332 to finish each of the first ten seasons of his career with a batting average above .300. Al Simmons, accomplishing the feat in the first 11 seasons of his career with the A's and the White Sox from 1924–34, and Pirate outfielder Paul Waner, reaching the milestone for a dozen consecutive seasons beginning in 1926, are the only players with the longer streaks than the Boston infielder, who has compiled a .345 average during the past decade.
In Game 3 off the ALDS, Bernie Williams becomes the first major leaguer to hit a home run from each side of the plate in a postseason game. The Yankee outfielder's second round-tripper, an eighth-inning shot batting left-handed off Bill Risley, is tossed back onto the field by a Mariner fan who is apparently unaware of the historic value of the souvenir.
After taking an early four run lead in the Jacobs Field contest, the Indians hold on to beat the defending World Champion Yankees, 4-3, in Game 5 of the ALDS. The Tribe will go on to beat Baltimore for the AL flag, but will lose their second Fall Classic in three years when the team drops Game 7 in extra innings to Florida.
Reds' officials announce games at Cinergy Field during the final two seasons will be on played natural grass. The surface in Cincinnati has been artificial turf since in 1970, when the ballpark made its debut as Riverfront Stadium.
Chief executive officer John Harrington puts the Red Sox up for sale. Since the death of Jean Yawkey in 1992, the team has been owned by the Jean R. Yawkey Trust.
With their 116th win, the Mariners tie the 1906 Cubs as the winningest team in major league history. Bret Boone's 37th home run of the season and the shutout pitching of five Seattle pitchers prove to be the difference in the 1-0 historic win over the Rangers.
At Camden Yards in front of a full house including Orioles notables Frank Robinson, Jim Palmer, and Earl Weaver as well as Commissioner Bud Selig and former President Bill Clinton, Cal Ripken plays his 3,001st and final game. After a hitless night for the 41 year-old, the final out of the 5-1 loss to the Red Sox is made as Cal watches from the on deck circle.
With his 151st pinch hit, Lenny Harris breaks the major league mark for career pinch hits established by Manny Mota. Coming off the Met bench to bat for Rey Ordonez, he lines a 1-2 pitch off Expo starter Carl Pavano for a single to become the career leader in pinch hits.
Defeating the A's, 5-4, the Red Sox become the seventh team to win the last three games to win a best-of-five playoff series. Other teams to overcome an 0-2 deficit include the 1981 Dodgers (Astros-NLDS), 1982 Brewers (Angels-ALCS), 1984 Padres (Cubs-NLCS), 1995 Mariners (Yankees-ALDS), 1999 Red Sox (Indians-ALDS), and the 2001 Yankees (A's-ALDS).
Reds’ outfielder Ken Griffey Jr. (.301, 35, 92) and Yankee first baseman/DH Jason Giambi (.271, 32 , 87) are voted the Comeback Players of the Year in their respective leagues. For the first time, the winners of the award are determined by the fans voting on MLB.com.
After failing to advance past the first round of the American League playoffs in their previous five postseason appearances, the A's beat the much-favored Twins, 8-3, to complete a three-game ALDS sweep. The victory, which was the team's tenth opportunity to win a clinching game, puts Oakland in the ALCS for the first time since 1992.
In Game 2 of the ALDS at Jacobs Field, the Indians score the tying run on a wild pitch thrown by a bug-covered Joba Chamberlain. A rare infestation of insects (midges), which appeared en masse in the eighth inning, impacts the usually reliable rookie Yankees reliever, who suffers his first blown save of the season.
At Wrigley Field, the Diamondbacks beat the Cubs, 5-1, to complete the three-game sweep of their National League division series. The loss for Chicago means the franchise has played for the last 99 years in the Windy City without winning a World Series championship.
With their 17th win in 18 games, the Rockies beat the Phillies at Coors Field, 2-1, completing a NLDS three-game sweep of Philadelphia to advance to their first-ever National League Championship Series. The Wild Card team will have to beat the Diamondbacks, their Western division foe, to win the pennant and earn a trip to the World Series.
Joe Mauer wins his third batting title, becoming the first player to accomplish the feat in consecutive seasons since Nomar Garciaparra lead the league in 1999-2000. The Twins catcher's .365 mark establishes a major league record for the highest batting average by a backstop.
With one out in the bottom of the 12th inning in the AL Central tiebreaker, the Twins beat the Tigers, 6-5, when Alexi Casilla's single plates Carlos Gomez from second base with the winning run. The Metrodome victory finishes an amazing comeback by Minnesota, going 17-4 in the final month to close a seven-game deficit and completes a colossal collapse for the Tigers, who become the first team in big league history to surrender a three-game lead with only four contests to play.
Rays' hurler David Price is this year's recipient of the Oklahoma Sports Museum's Warren Spahn Award given annually to the best left-handed pitcher in the big leagues. The honor, named after the winningest southpaw in the history of the game, is awarded based on a point system which evaluates performance based on their wins, strikeouts, and earned run average.
The Cardinals exercised their $16 million option for next season with first baseman Albert Pujols. The 30 year-old superstar, a three-time NL MVP, led the circuit with 42 home runs and 118 RBIs.
At Citizens Bank Park, Phillies right-hander Roy Halladay throws the second no-hitter in postseason history when he beats the Reds, 4-0, in Game 1 of the NLDS. Don Larsen became the first hurler to accomplish the feat by throwing a perfect game in the Yankees' victory over Brooklyn in Game 5 of the 1956 World Series.
Robin Ventura, seen by many as a surprise choice, is hired by general manager Ken Williams as the White Sox's new manager. The former All-Star infielder, who played ten seasons in Chicago after being selected as the team's first round pick in 1988, replaces a vocal and often-controversial Ozzie Guillen, who left the Windy City to be the Marlins' new skipper.
With a year remaining on his contract, Jim Tracy resigns as the manager of the Rockies, a position he has held since his promotion from the club's bench coach in May of 2009. During his four-year tenure with Colorado, the 2009 NL Manager of the Year compiled a 294-308 record, going 64-98 last season, a franchise mark for losses.
The Orioles eliminate the two-time AL champion Rangers, 5-1, in the American League's first win-or-go-home wild-card playoff game. The victory sends the surprising Baltimore team into the playoffs for the first time in 15 years, a best-of-five division series against New York.
The Cardinals, in the first NL one-game winner-take-all wild-card playoff, beat the hometown Braves, 6-3, in a game that will be best remembered for a disputed infield fly rule call in the eighth inning. The irate Turner Field fans show their displeasure with the umpires' decision on what appears to be a key Redbird error on a dropped pop fly in the outfield by littering the playing field with debris, causing a 19-minute delay while the ground crew cleans up the assorted trash.
The Indians name former Boston skipper Terry Francona, rather than Sandy Alomar Jr., who replaced Manny Acta as the interim field boss with six games remaining to be played on the schedule, to be their 42nd manager in franchise history. The 53 year-old's father, Tito, played with the Tribe from 1959 to '64.