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This Day in Baseball History
January 17th

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23 Fact(s) Found
1888 Kansas City is admitted to the American Association to replace the Mets. Although the Mets were bought by Brooklyn, the franchise is considered suspended until a Manhattan playing field can be located.
1915 According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the American League franchise will now be known as the Indians replacing the nickname the Naps - a change necessitated due to the departure of player-manager Napolean Lajoie to the Philadelphia A's. Team owner Charles W. Somers asked the city's baseball writers for help, and with the feedback of their readers, the scribes selected the team's new moniker to honor former Cleveland Spider player Louis Sockalexis, the first Native American to play in the major Leagues.
1916 The Giants buy Benny Kauff, the Federal League's best player, from the Brooklyn Tip Tops for $35,000. The 26-year old center fielder's first three seasons with New York are solid, but the trash-talking fly chaser will never live up to his reputation of being the 'Ty Cobb of the Feds'.
1922 Benny Kauff's appeal to be reinstated as a major league player is denied by an appellate court. The former Giant outfielder believed his banishment from the game by Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis is unjust due to his acquittal of the auto theft charges brought against him.
1970 Willie Mays is named as the Player of the Decade for the sixties by the Sporting News.
1970 The Yankees draft Fred Lynn in the January phase of the free-agent draft. The Chicago native, who becomes the first player in baseball history to win the MVP and Rookie of the Year awards in the same season while playing for the 1975 Red Sox, chooses not to sign with the Bronx Bombers.
1979 After resigning as the general manager of the Rangers nine days ago, Danny O'Brien signs a contract to become the Mariners' president and CEO.
1983 Bob Horner and the Braves agree to a $6 million, four-year deal. The contract includes $400‚000 in bonuses if the Atlanta third baseman keeps his playing weight under 215 pounds.
2002 Commissioner Bud Selig indicates Washington, D.C. area is a 'prime candidate' to get a team if a franchise relocates in the near future. The nation's capital has two lost major league teams, the original franchise shifted to Minnesota and became the Twins in 1961 and was replaced by the expansion Senators who moved to Texas a decade later becoming the Rangers.
2002 Avoiding arbitration, Darin Erstad (.258, 9, 63) and the Angels agree to a one-year contract worth $6.25 million. The first baseman/outfielder, who can be a free agent after the season, turned down a long-term deal from Anaheim last spring estimated to be worth $50 million.
2002 Jermaine Dye agrees to a three-year extension worth $32 million to stay with the A's. Oakland is counting on the injured outfielder, who shattered his left tibia fouling a ball off his leg just below the knee in Game 4 of the ALDS, to fill the void created by Jason Giambi's departure to New York.
2003 Avoiding arbitration, the Reds give Danny Graves (7-3, 3.19, 32 saves) a three-year deal. The former Reds closer is slated to join the starting rotation this season after posting a 1-0 record with a 1.89 ERA in his four appearances as a starter at the end of last season.
2003 Despite his Cooperstown's ban in the United States, Pete Rose is nominated for induction into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame. The former member of the 1984 Montreal squad, who banged out his 4,000th career hit, a double off Jerry Koosman, as a member of the Expos, was named by the chairman of the newly formed Canadian Baseball League, Tony Riviera.
2003 Torii Hunter (.289, 29, 94) agrees to a four-year, $32 million deal to stay with the Twins. Although being a spark plug for the AL West division winners, the 27-year old Gold Glove outfielder didn't think he would be offered a multiyear contract by the small-market team.
2005 With the Astros offering $13.5 million, Roger Clemens asks for $22 million in salary arbitration. The amount, which would make the 'Rocket' the richest paid hurler in big league history, surpasses the previous record amount submitted for arbitration of $18.5 million by Yankee Derek Jeter in 2001.
2005 Former major leaguer Raymond ‘Lee’ Cunningham celebrates his 100th birthday. The oldest living player, who made his debut with the Cardinals in 1931, played in 14 games during two seasons hitting .154 in 26 plate appearances.
2006 At the 41st Annual Red Smith Sports Award Banquet, Gaylord Perry receives the 2006 "Nice Guy" Award. The 67-year old Hall of Famer, infamous for throwing a spitball, joins Kirby Puckett, Lou Brock and Brooks Robinson as a recipient of this award.
2006 After delaying his decision about playing in the World Baseball Classic, Alex Rodriguez announces he will be a member of the United States team. The Yankee All-Star third baseman had considered playing for the Dominican Republic, the homeland of his parents.
2008 The Blue Jays ink Scott Downs (4-2, 2.17) to a $10 million, three-year deal. The southpaw tied for the American League lead in relief appearances last season with 81, half of the games his team played.
2012 Cole Hamels (14-9, 2.79) and the Phillies come to terms on a $15 million, one-year deal. It is the richest contract ever offered by a team to avoid arbitration with a player.
2012 Calling them the "greatest comeback team in the history of baseball," President Barack Obama welcomes the World Champion Cardinals to the White House. Noticeably absent from the twenty Redbird players and other club personnel that attended the East Room ceremony are Albert Pujols, now an Angel after signing a very lucrative free-agent deal last month, and manager Tony La Russa, who retired at the end of the season.

2012 Avoiding arbitration, the Red Sox and Jacoby Ellsbury come to terms on a one-year, $8.05 million non-guaranteed deal. The 28-year old outfielder, the American League Comeback Player of the Year, finished second in AL Most Valuable Player balloting after hitting .321, belting 32 home runs, and driving in 105 runs.
2012 The Tigers announce that Victor Martinez (.330, 12, 103) will most likely miss next season due to the tearing of the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee while he was working out last week. The anticipated absence of the 33 year old DH, a four-time All-Star, will lead Detroit to sign free-agent Cecil Fielder to a nine-year mega-deal worth $214 million.

23 Fact(s) Found