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This Day in Baseball History
March 11th

15 Fact(s) Found
1901 John McGraw, manager of new American League's Orioles, signs Charlie Grant, trying to pass off the black infielder as a Cherokee Indian named Tokohoma. The skipper's scheme to secretly integrate the major leagues unravels in Chicago when White Sox president Charles Comiskey objects to Baltimore's new player, after recognizing the true identity of the team's second baseman.
1933 A significant earthquake during an exhibition game in L.A. sends the Cubs and Giants scurrying to second base until the tremors stop. The seismic event, which takes place along the 46-mile-long Newport-Inglewood Fault, is estimated at a magnitude of 6.3.
1933 Rogers Hornsby returns to the Cardinals as a player after being fired as the Cubs' manager last August. The 'Rajah's' return to the Redbirds, after a six-year absence, will be short-lived when he is claimed on waivers in July by the crosstown AL's Browns, who make him the skipper of the last-place club, replacing the recently-resigned Bill Killefer.
1953 Braves' owner Lou Perini proposes a ban on any major league franchise shift to an existing minor league city until October 1st. Boston, who owns the Milwaukee minor league franchise, had invoked its territorial privilege last week to block the Browns' attempt to shift their franchise to Milwaukee.
1953 The Dodgers defeat the A's, 4-2, in the first game played in Holman Stadium, their Grapefruit League ballpark at the team's spring training complex in Vero Beach, better known as Dodgertown. Fifty-five years later, Carl Erskine, the game's starting pitcher, will return to play the national anthem on his harmonica as an 81 year-old at the club's last game at the storied facility.
1954 In the first game of a doubleheader, Giants right fielder Don Mueller hits for the cycle in team’s 13-7 victory over the Pirates at the Polo Grounds. 'Mandrake the Magician,’ who homers in his final at-bat to complete the deed, will be the only major league player to accomplish the feat this season.
1957 Representative Emanuel Celler, whose congressional committee is investigating baseball, calls Commissioner Ford Frick a czar. The New York congressman takes exception when the baseball boss cautions the major league owners about commenting on the recent decision by the Supreme Court concerning pro football coming under antitrust rules.
1958 American League president Will Harridge informs the circuit's umpires the wearing of a helmet is mandatory for batters this season, reinforcing the edict passed by a 7-1 vote of the owners at their December meeting in Colorado Springs. The Red Sox dissent, knowing their slugger Ted Williams adamantly is opposed to wearing headgear, asserting the protective equipment will interfere with the timing of their hitters.
1961 At Palm Springs, former president Dwight Eisenhower is a no-show at the Angels' first-ever exhibition game, an 8-3 victory over the Cubs. Ike had been scheduled to throw out the ceremonial first pitch but decided to go fishing instead.
1988 California Angels manager Gene Mauch, citing health issues, takes a leave of absence and is replaced by Cookie Rojas. The Halos' skipper will officially announce his retirement in two weeks, leaving the game with a managerial record of 1,902 wins and 2,037 losses during his 26-year tenure in the dugout with the Phillies, Expos, Twins, and California.

Amazon Little General: Gene Mauch
A Baseball Life

2001 Preston Wilson, the franchise's first 30-30 player, signs a $32 million five-year contract with Florida. The 26 year-old Marlin center fielder, who is the stepson and nephew of former major leaguer Mookie Wilson, was obtained from the Mets in the Mike Piazza deal in 1998.
2002 The Red Sox replace Joe Kerrigan, who was fired last week, with Grady Little, who will manage the team for two years, compiling a 188-136 (.580) record and making one appearance in the postseason as the AL wild card. The once-popular skipper's contract will not be renewed for 2004 when he becomes the target of fans' angst for not pulling out starter Pedro Martinez with a three-run lead in the eighth inning of Game 7 of the ALCS, a contest Boston will eventually lose in the eleventh on Aaron Boone's walk-off home run.
2004 The first contest played at Petco Park, the Padres' new home, establishes the record for the best-attended game in college baseball history when 40,106 fans watch Tony Gwynn's San Diego State Aztecs beat the University of Hawaii, 4-0. The previous mark of 27,673 was established in 2002 when state rivals LSU and Tulane met in the Superdome in New Orleans.
2006 First baseman Nick Johnson (.289, 15, 74) and the Nationals agree to a $16.5 million, three-year contract extension. The 27 year-old first baseman, who signed a $3.2 million, one-year deal in January to avoid arbitration, has often been injured since making his big league debut with the Yankees five years ago.
2010 Todd Helton and the Rockies agree to a $9.9 million, two-year contract extension that takes the first baseman through the 2013 season. The 38 year-old fan favorite, who has played his entire career in Colorado, hit .325, with 15 home runs, and drove in 86 runs last season after undergoing back surgery in September of 2008.

15 Fact(s) Found