» June 7, 1969: The Washington Senators name Jeff Burroughs the number one pick in the June free-agent draft. The Astros choose J.R. Richard as the 2nd pick, and the White Sox follow with 3B Ted Nicholson. Cincinnati picks Ken Griffey on the 29th round, while Kansas City, with a record 90 picks, takes Al Cowens with their 84th choice. The Dodgers select Bill Seinsoth on the first round after selecting him on the 6th round in 1968: the promising lefty slugger is killed in a car accident in September. With the 13th pick, the Red Sox take University of Minnesota's Noel Jenke, who is also drafted by the Chicago Black Hawks and the Minnesota Vikings (12th round). He'll never make the majors (Pawtucket in 1971 is the highest) but he will play four years in the NFL. Montreal picks Tony Scott on the 71st round and Al Cowens, who will play for 13 years in the majors, lasts until the 75th round (Royals).
» September 5, 1971: Astros pitcher J.R. Richard makes his ML debut, striking out 15 Giants in a 5–3 win.
» October 1, 1974:
The Dodgers clinch the NL West with am 8–5 victory over Houston. Don Sutton earns the win over J.R. Richard.
» May 4, 1975:
In the first of 2, the Astros J.R. Richard walks 11 Giants in 8–6 loss. Houston wins the nitecap, 12–8.
» July 6, 1975: For the 2nd time this season against the Braves, a team uses three sacs (no flies) in an inning. Houston does it in the 9th in a 6–2 win behind J.R. Richard.
» September 26, 1975: Burt Hooton wins his 12th straight game, beating J.R. Richard and the Astros 3–2. Happy's 12 in a row is a Dodger record for starting pitchers.
» July 6, 1976: Houston's J.R. Richard allows 10 walks but no runs in shutting out the Mets, 1–0, in 10 innings. Starter Jon Matlack is the losing pitcher.
» April 10, 1979:
J.R. Richard throws a major-league record six wild pitches in the Astrodome against the Dodgers, but strikes out 13 and wins 2–1.
» April 26, 1979: Against the Cubs, J.R. Richard homers in the 3rd and leaves the game after five innings with a back strain, but is the winner as Houston wins, 6–2. Lynn McGlothen is the starter and loser for Chicago.
» May 6, 1979: The Reds light up J.R. Richard and whip the Astros, 17–5. Champ Summers has five RBIs for Cincy to win the opener. The Reds take the nitecap, 8–2.
» September 29, 1979: The Astros J.R. Richard shuts out the Dodgers 3–0 and fans 11 batters to break his own modern National League record for strikeouts by a righthander. Richard finishes with 313 K's, 10 more than in 1978. One of five Dodgers hits is a single by Manny Mota, his 146th pinch hit, breaking the mark of 145 formerly held by Smoky Burgess.
» April 19, 1980: Houston's J.R. Richard fires a one-hitter against the Dodgers, striking out 12 in a 2–0 victory. Reggie Smith's infield roller in the 4th inning is LA's lone hit.
» April 30, 1980:
J.R. Richard tops Reds vet Tom Seaver, 5–1, to move Houston into 1st place. Richard will lose his next three starts.
» June 11, 1980: Houston's J.R. Richard pitches his 3rd consecutive shutout, winning 3–0 versus the Cubs.
» June 17, 1980: Complaining of arm tiredness, Houston's J.R. Richard exits after pitching five innings against the Cubs. He is the winner, 7–1, over the Cubs but he will not pitch for 11 days.
» June 28, 1980: J.R. Richard again leaves after just three 1/3 innings against Cincinnati in an 8–5 loss. In 16 starts, the Houston star has now left early three times with a sore back, three times with a sore shoulder, and three times with a weak forearm.
» July 8, 1980: At Dodger Stadium, the 51st All-Star Game features J.R. Richard (10–4) and Steve Stone (12–3) are starters, with Richard going just two innings because of various back and shoulder problems he's been having. The National League battles back to wins its 9th consecutive All-Star Game 4–2, pinning the loss on Dodger defector Tommie John. Reds outfielder Ken Griffey goes 2-for-3 with a solo home run to win the game's MVP Award.
» July 14, 1980: After fanning the side in the 2nd inning, J.R. Richard leaves after retiring the 1st batter in the 4th. The Houston pitcher complained of nausea, and the next day, Houston will place him on the 21-day DL. The Astros lose today, 2–0, to Atlanta's Phil Niekro.
» July 16, 1980: Despite much speculation that he is simply malingering, the Astros place star pitcher J.R. Richard on the 21-day disabled list with a mystery arm problem. The six foot eight inch righthander is 10-4 with a 1.89 ERA and 119 strikeouts in 114 innings, but has removed himself from 10 games this year complaining of fatigue and a "dead arm." On July 23rd, Richard will check into a hospital for a series of physical and psychological tests to determine the cause of his "erratic" behavior.
» July 30, 1980: Attempting to throw for the first time since being hospitalized for tests last week, J.R. Richard suffers a stroke and is rushed to Houston's Methodist Hospital for emergency surgery to remove a life-threatening blood clot in his neck. He will never pitch in the major leagues again.
» March 27, 1984:
J.R. Richard is released by the Astros, ending his professional baseball career. Richard was 0-2 with a 13.68 ERA in six starts for Tucson (Pacific Coast League) last season.
» October 2, 1986:
Mike Scott strikes out eight Giants in a 2–1 Astros victory to run his season total to 306, joining Sandy Koufax and J.R. Richard as the only National League pitchers to fan 300 batters in one season. Scott loses his bid for a 2nd consecutive no-hitter when Will Clark doubles in the 7th inning.
» July 30, 1991: Boston relief pitcher Jeff Gray collapses in the clubhouse prior to the Red Sox game with Texas. He becomes lightheaded, his speech slurs, and he suffers weakness in the right side of his body. Diagnosed as suffering from a stroke, Gray will undergo two years of rehab and, in 1994, become a minor league pitching coach. Gray's stroke comes on the 11th anniversary of J.R. Richard's stroke. In the game which follows, the Red Sox Carlos Quintana ties a major league record by driving in six runs in one inning in Boston's 11-6 victory. He strokes a double and a grand slam.
» September 21, 1997: The Cubs beat the Phils, 11–3, but Curt Schilling racks up eight K's to match J.R. Richard for the most strikeouts by a National League righty (313). He'll finish with 319 strikeouts. Ryne Sandberg, in his final game at Wrigley, is 2-for-3 before leaving for a pinch runner in the 5th. He makes a curtain call in the 7th when Harry Caray sings. Kevin Tapani wins his 6th straight start.