IN THE NEWS: The Cubs open at Wrigley Field before an estimated 50,000, the biggest Opening Day turnout they've ever had, and lose to the Pirates 4–3.
Both the Yankees and Indians, the two major league teams with the innovative numbers on the backs of the players' uniforms are scheduled to open today, but rain cancels the New York opener. Cleveland opens at home and hands new Tiger's manager Bucky Harris his first loss, 5–4 in 10 innings. Cleveland rookie Earl Averill, #5, cracks an 0-2 pitch for a homer in his first at bat, off Earl Whitehill (Earl's #3 will later be retired). The numberless Charlie Gehringer matches the rookie in the 3rd inning, hitting his off Cleveland's Joe Shaute. The Indians will wear numbers only on their home uniforms. Averill is just the 2nd player to connect in his first at-bat: Luke Stuart was the 1st, in 1921.
IN THE NEWS: President Herbert Hoover throws out the first ball in Washington and then watches the Athletics win, 13–4. The previous day's game, marking the home opening for Washington, was rained out.
Babe Ruth and actress Claire Hodgson are married at five A.M. to avoid crowds. The Yankee home opener with the Red Sox is again rained out so the wedding party continues uninterupted.
IN THE NEWS: After two cancellations of their season start—their first ever—the Yankees open against the Red Sox before 40,000 at the Stadium, winning 7–3. Judge Landis presents diamond-studded watches to the New York players in honor of their championship season in 1928. New York Starter George Pipgras allows just three hits in five 1/3 innings, but walks 9. Reliever Fred Heimach then pitches hitless ball to preserve the win. In his first at bat against Boston's Red Ruffing, the newly wed Babe hits a home run and as he rounds 2nd base, he doffs his cap to his bride Claire in the stands. Gehrig adds a home run in the 6th, off Milt Gaston. For the first time, the Yanks have numbers on their uniforms, assigned according to the player's spot in the lineup: Combs, 1, Koenig, two Ruth, 3, Gehrig, 4, Meusel, 5, Lazzeri 6, Durocher, 7, Grabowski, 8. The win goes to Pipgras # 14, with Heimach #17 picking up the save.
In Philadelphia, the twice-deferred opener unfolds before a frigid 6,000 with the Giants handing the Quakers an 11–9 loss. For the first time in 15 years, the Giants dress at their hotel and taxi to the ball park. Lefty O'Doul bangs a pair of homers for Philley, while Hurst and Larry Benton, in relief of winning pitcher Hubbell, add round trippers for New York. Benton's comes in the Giants 6-run 9th, when the New Yorkers twice pull off successful double steals. Each time Phils catcher Virgil Davis fires the ball into CF.
IN THE NEWS: The Giants bounce the Phils, 14–5, on 20 hits. Also hitting are Philley 1B Don Hurst and the Giants Harry Kelly, who was verbally riding Hurst from the bench. When separated, Hurst is ejected. Vet Carl Mays is the winning pitcher, running his winning streak to 13 games over the Phils. He's never lost (1st win: May 13, 1924) and it is his final decision against the Quakers.
IN THE NEWS: In Chicago before 45,000, the Cubs top the Cards, 4–0, with Guy Bush winning over Willie Mitchell. Hornsby is 4-for-4 with two doubles, but the Rajah will go 1-for-13 in his next three games.
Detroit P Earl Whitehill hits his first ML home run, off Browns reliever Herb Ty Cobb, to help himself to a 16–9 win. Whitehill will hit two more homers this year, then just one more in his career.
IN THE NEWS: At Brooklyn, Brooklyn relief pitcher Clise Dudley becomes the first man to hit a home run on the first ML pitch he sees, one thrown by Claude Willoughby. Dudley will hit two more homers in his four ML years. He is more than matched by Chuck Klein, with a single, double and homer from the 7th spot, who leads the Phils to an 8–3 win.
IN THE NEWS: The Red Sox play the first Sunday game in Boston history, at Braves Field, losing to the A's 7–3. Protests by a few members of a nearby church are the reason for the shift from Fenway. The Braves, rained out of their scheduled Sunday game on April 21, will play their first Sunday home game on May 5. Starter Red Ruffing gives up four runs in the 6th, including consecutive homers by Miller and Dykes. When Milt Gaston takes over in the 7th he pitches to his brother Alex, the 2nd battery of brothers in AL history: Tommy and Homer Thompson, one game in 1912 for the Yankees, were the first.