The Giants agree to share the Polo Grounds with the Highlanders. The American League club, which will become known as the Yankees, had been playing their home games at Hilltop Park, located at 168th Street and Broadway since 1903, when the franchise shifted from Baltimore to New York.
Argyle R. Mackey warns alien players they will face deportation if found jumping U.S. professional contracts. The Commissioner of Immigration and Naturalization cites the McCarran-Walter Act as the basis of his decision.
"I’ve been asked the question many times over the years, all of us have, but I have to say right here and now: Willie was probably the best of us three…just look at the stats." - Yankees legend Mickey Mantle.
Willie Mays, Duke Snider, and Mickey Mantle make their last appearance together when they attend the BBWAA Dinner in New York. ‘The Mick’ answers the often-asked question about who was the best of the fabled Big Apple trio of outfielders, telling the audience, "Willie was probably the best of us three…just look at the stats."
After being traded by the Expos along with outfielder Jesus Alou to the Astros for first baseman/outfielder Rusty Staub, Donn Clendenon refuses to report to his new team. The former Montreal first baseman balks at going to Houston because of a personality conflict with the team's newly-hired skipper, Harry Walker, who had managed him in Pittsburgh.
Right-handers Robin Roberts (86.9%), best known for his work with the Phillies, and Bob Lemon (78.6%), who spent his entire career in an Indians uniform, are elected to the Hall of Fame. Roberts enjoyed six consecutive seasons with 20+ wins with Philadelphia, and Lemon compiled a 207-128 (.618) record along with an ERA of 3.23 during his 15 years with the Tribe.
Lindsey Nelson, selected by the expansion Mets as the team's lead announcer in 1962, reveals he will not be returning to the Mets broadcast booth this season, ending a 17-year partnership with Ralph Kiner and Bob Murphy. The colorfully-clad Hall of Fame announcer, who will eventually do play-by-play for the Giants, is replaced by Steve Albert, the younger brother of the well-known NBA Knicks and NHL Rangers' broadcaster, Marv Albert.
Free agent Reggie Jackson signs a four-year, nearly four-million dollar contract with the Angels, ending his five-year roller coaster ride with the Yankees. During his tenure in New York, the Bronx Bombers appeared in the postseason four times, winning back-to-back World Championships in 1977-78.
Arbitrator T. Roberts declares seven presently contracted players no-risk free agents as a result of the collusion suit against Major League baseball. The players, who include Kirk Gibson, Carlton Fisk, and Joe Niekro, have until March 1 to make deals with other clubs.
Pirates infielder Brian Giles repeats as the Roberto Clemente Award winner. The local award, presented by the Pittsburgh chapter of the BBWAA is given to the Buc player who demonstrates a high level of performance on the field as exemplified by the late Pittsburgh outfielder.
Fifty-eight year-old Tommie Agee, the 1966 American League Rookie of the Year, dies of cardiac arrest in Manhattan. The World Series standout made two memorable catches in center field at Shea Stadium (saving possibly five runs) and also homered in the 5-0 Game 3 Mets' victory over the Orioles in the 1969 Fall Classic.
Free-agent and former Ranger catcher Ivan 'Pudge' Rodriguez (.314, 19, 60) signs a one-year deal worth $10 million to play in his hometown with the Marlins. The Miami resident, who is a ten-time Gold Glove backstop, will be replacing Charles Johnson, who was traded to the Rockies in the off-season.
When the island’s best players meet for an exhibition game, Dayan Viciedo becomes the youngest player in Cuban baseball history to be named to an All-Star squad. The 16 year-old Villa Clara prospect has played shortstop and third base, as well as having pitched in international youth competitions for various national teams.
The Mets and outfielder Endy Chavez come to terms to a $3.85 million, two-year deal. The 29 year-old Venezuelan, who missed most of last season with a hamstring pull, will always be remembered in Mets lore for 'the catch' in Game 7 of the 2006 NLCS against the Cardinals.
Jayson Werth, avoiding salary arbitration, agrees to a $10 million, two-year deal with the Phillies. With the departure of free agent Pat Burrell to Tampa Bay, the outfielder becomes the only returning right-handed slugger to the lefty-heavy lineup of the World Champions.
The Mets, in need of a center fielder until Carlos Beltran returns to the lineup in early May, deal 30 year-old right-handed reliever Brian Stokes (2-4, 3.97) to the Angels in exchange for the highly-paid, but under-achieving Gary Matthews Jr. (.250, 4, 50). Los Angeles agrees to pay a significant portion of the slumping outfielder's $50 million five-year contract that 'Little Sarge' signed three seasons ago with the Halos.
A's prospect Grant Desme is retiring from baseball to pursue his calling to be a Catholic priest. In 2009, The 23 year-old minor league outfielder, who was recently named the Arizona Fall League's Most Valuable Player, hit .288 along with 31 home runs and 89 RBIs, playing single A ball with the Kane County Cougars (MWL) and the Stockton Ports (CAL).
The Phillies and Shane Victorino (.292, 10, 62) come to terms on a $22 million, three-year deal. The 'Flyin' Hawaiian' won his second consecutive Gold Glove roaming center field for the NL champions last season.
Twenty-five year-old right-hander Masahiro Tanaka accepts the Yankees' seven-year contract offer for $155 million, the fifth-largest deal ever given to a pitcher. In addition to giving the largest sum ever awarded to a Japanese player, New York will also pay an additional $20 million to the Rakuten Golden Eagles, his former team, as part of the new posting agreement between Major League Baseball and teams in Japanese leagues.