1877 - In a preseason game in St. Louis‚ the Browns and the Syracuse Stars play a 15-inning scoreless tie‚ the longest scoreless game yet played by professional clubs. It is suspected that the new "dead ball" used by the NL is partly to blame‚ as were pitchers Tricky Nichols and Harry McCormick.
1884 - Moses Fleetwood Walker becomes the first black in the ML when he plays for the Toledo club in the American Association. He goes 0-for-3 in his ML debut‚ allowing 2 passed balls and committing 4 errors‚ as his team bows to Louisville 5-1. He will do better in 41 subsequent games before injuries force Toledo to release him in late September. Racial bigotry will prevent his return to ML ball. In July he is joined by his brother Welday‚ an OF. No other black player appears in a ML uniform until Jackie Robinson in 1947.
1902 - An article in the Washington Post states the following: "The new rule adopted by the National League which prohibits a player from taking first on being hit by a slow pitch is bound to add to the trouble of the umpires."
1928 - Indians' outfielders tie the ML record with 5 assists in a game against the Browns and rookie Sam Langford has 4 of them‚ also equaling the ML record (Cliff Blau points out that the Plain Dealer play-by-play account of this game gives Langford only 3 assists) It's the 10th time (once in extra innings) it has happened in the major leagues‚ and the last time this century. The Tribe is outhit 12-10 by St. Louis but they win‚ 4-3‚ as Johnny Hodapp scores all 4 runs.
1951 - The Yankees' new phenom‚ Mickey Mantle‚ connects for his first ML HR‚ off Randy Gumpert of the White Sox. Minnie Minoso becomes the first black to play for the White Sox. He plays 3B and‚ facing Vic Raschi in his first ML at bat‚ rips a HR to CF. The Yankees win 8-3‚ with Mantle collecting 3 RBIs.
1953 - The U.S. Court of Appeals denies the $450‚000 suit of former pitcher Boyd Tepler made in 1951 against organized baseball‚ the Cubs‚ and William Wrigley for an arm injury suffered in 1944. He had contended that negligent coaching‚ in effect‚ ended his career prematurely.
1966 - In the 1st of two games today‚ the Angels and Red Sox combine for 9 DPs‚ setting an AL record‚ and tying the ML. Boston and the Twins will match it for a regulation game in 1990. California wins‚ 6-1‚ then loses the nitecap‚ 9-1.
1974 - Dock Ellis of the Pirates hits 3 consecutive batters with pitches in the first inning‚ setting a ML record‚ and walks another in the frame before being lifted. Dock later reveals that he was high on pep pills at the time. The Bucs lose 5-3 to the Reds.
1980 - Pittsburgh's Bill "Mad Dog" Madlock is fined $5‚000 and suspended 15 games by NL president Chub Feeney for poking umpire Jerry Crawford in the face with his glove after being called out on strikes with the bases loaded. Madlock appeals and remains in uniform‚ but finally withdraws the appeal and begins serving the suspension on June 6th‚ after disgruntled NL umpires threaten to eject him from every game he tries to play in.
Pete Falcone ties the modern ML record by striking out the first 6 batters of the game‚ but his Mets lose to the Phillies 2-1. Falcone finishes with 8 strikeouts in 7 innings.
1991 - Oakland's Rickey Henderson garners his 939th career stolen base in the 4th inning of a game against the Yankees to break Lou Brock's all-time mark. With Brock standing next to him‚ Henderson modestly proclaims‚ "Lou Brock was certainly a great basestealer‚ but today I'm the greatest of all time." In another curious tie-in with Nolan Ryan‚ Henderson had been the victim of Ryan's 5‚000th career strikeout.
Dodger OF Darryl Strawberry ties an NL record by striking out 5 times in a game against the Expos. "I really can't figure it out‚" he says‚ "because I feel so good up there." Strawberry also drops a fly ball for a 3-base error in the 9-3 loss.
1995 - The owners and umpires reach agreement on a 5-year contract‚ ending the lockout. Regular umpires will return to work on May 3.
2003 - Baseball players agree to a two-year experiment to give home-field advantage in the WS to the league that wins the All-Star Game. The two sides also agree to increase the roster size from 30 to 32‚ and to give players‚ managers‚ and coaches a say on who makes the team.