Charlton's Baseball Chronology
Using his newly perfected knuckleball, Texas P R.A. Dickey ties a post-1900 major league record by surrendering six HRs to the Tigers in a 10-6 Detroit victory. The only ML pitcher to give up more homers was Charlie Sweeney of the St. Louis Maroons who allowed seven to the Detroit Wolverines (AA) on June 12, 1886. Detroit clouts 7 round-trippers in the contest, and sets a major league record with 15 homers in their first three games, breaking the mark of 10, set by the 1998 Mariners. The Tigers set a team record for any 3-game span, breaking the mark of 14, set in 1997.
The Phillies lose their 3rd straight game to the Cardinals, 4-2, and Jimmy Rollins loses his 38-game hitting streak as he is held hitless in 4 ABs. Rollins hit .379 (64-for-169) during his two-season streak and fell just 7 games short of the all-time record of 45 held by Willie Keeler. "Wee Willie" got a hit in the final game of the 1896 season then posted at least one safety in 44 straight games to begin 1897. Rollins joins Vada Pinson (31 games 1965-66), Ron LeFlore (31 games 1975-76) and Hal Morris (32 games 1996-97) as the only players since 1960 with 30-gamers over two years.
Devil Rays P Mark Hendrickson hurls a complete game 3-hit shutout, defeating the Orioles, 2-0. It is the 1st complete game shutout for TB since 2003. The streak of 349 consecutive games without a complete game shutout is 2nd in AL history behind the 1994-96 Brewers (386).
Pedro Feliz honors three former major-leaguers (including his own manager, Felipe Alou) when he drives in Barry Bonds, Moises Alou and Lance Niekro with a bases-clearing double during the Giants' six-run 3rd against the Braves’ off of Jorge Sosa. According to Dave Vincent, Feliz is the first major-leaguer in the last 49 years to drive in three sons of ex-major-leaguers on the same play. Further research reveals that it is only the 11th time since 1957 that three sons of big leaguers were on base at the same time. Doing some record setting of their own in the 6-4 loss, Brave batterymates Brian McCann (C) and Jorge Sosa (P) became only the 11th such duo to hit back-to-back homers in the majors when they go yard consecutively. It is the first ML hit and homer for Sosa, who will have two more hits, both homers, this year.
The Nationals defeat the Phillies 7-3 for the team's first win while representing the city of Washington. Brad Wilkerson is the hero for the Nationals hitting for the 2nd cycle of his career. He also accomplished the feat against the Pirates on June 24 2003.
The World Champion Florida Marlins open their 2004 season with a 4-3 win over the Montreal Expos. The game marks the first time that 2 WS MVPs oppose each other on Opening Day‚ with 2003 winner Josh Beckett going for Florida and 1997 winner Livan Hernandez on the mound for Montreal. Like Beckett, Hernandez was a member of the Marlins when he won his World Series MVP.
The Mets open their season with a 7-2 win over the Braves. SS Kazuo Matsui, making his American baseball debut, opens the game with a home run on the first pitch from Russ Russ Ortiz‚ becoming only the 20th player in baseball history to homer on the first major league pitch he sees. Matsui adds a pair of doubles and two walks in his debut.He is the 3rd player in Met history to homer in his first AB‚ joining Mike Fitzgerald and Benny Ayala.
The Giants down the Astros‚ 7-5‚ as rookie P David Aardsma gets the win in his first ML appearance. With his first pitch of the game, Aardsma also replaces Hank Aaron in the top spot in baseball's all-time alphabetical listing.
The White Sox score 9 runs in the 8th inning to rally for a 10-2 win over the Tigers. Detroit becomes the 1st team since the 1962-63 Mets to lose their first 6 games of the season in consecutive years.
The Pirates shut out the Phillies 2-0 behind Kris Benson. Philadelphia's Jim Thome goes 0-for-4 ending his streak of reaching base safely in 60 straight games the longest streak in the majors since Mark McGwire reached base in 62 in a row in 1995-96.
Shea Hillenbrand has a homer 2 doubles and 6 RBI to pace the Red Sox to 12-2 win over the Orioles. Nomar Garciaparra adds a walk double triple and homer and scores 4 times as the Sox jump on nemesis Rodrigo Lopez 4-0 versus Boston last year.
Highly touted Japanese pitcher Kazuhisa Ishii makes his ML debut and pitches 5 1/3 scoreless innings striking out 10 in LA's 9-2 win over the Rockies. Brian Jordan backs Ishii with a grand slam to give the loss to Jason Jennings. Relief pitcher Jesse Orosco of the Los Angeles Dodgers scores just the third run of his 4-decade major-league He last scored while playing for the Mets on July 22 1986.
The White Sox roll by the Kansas City Royals winning 14-0. Mark Buehrle allows 5 hits in 6 innings pitched. Paul Konerko has 3 runs and 3 RBIs and Magglio Ordonez has 3 RBIs. Trailing 9-0 in the 8th the Royals bring in Miguel Asencio the youngest pitcher in the majors. Making his ML debut Asencio walks Kenny Lofton on 4 pitches and does the same to the next three batters. He leaves having thrown 16 pitches.
The Mets score 9 runs in the 9th inning-8 off John Smoltz-to break a 2-2 tie and defeat the Braves 11-2. Rey Ordonez's bases-loaded double is the big blow as the Mets have 15 at bats in the 9th. It is the most runs they've ever scored in the frame.
The Phillies retire Jim Bunning's uniform number before their home opener a 3-2 loss to the Cubs. The game is delayed an hour 51 minutes by rain. Cubs reliever Todd Von Poppel strikes out all 5 batters he faces while Jeff Fassero gets his 2nd save in 2 nights. Previously his last save was June 30 1993. Julio Zuleta hits the first Cub homer of the year.
A crowd of 42 024 including President George Bush is on hand for the first game ever played in Milwaukee's Miller Park. After Bush tosses out the first ball the Brewers come from behind on Richie Sexson's 2-run HR in the 8th to defeat the Reds 5-4. Reliever David Weathers takes the win.
The Tigers score 8 runs in the 6th inning to take a 9-5 then hold on to defeat the White Sox 10-9 in 10 innings. Tony Clark has 2 hits in the 6th including a grand slam. Thomas Durham and Valentin hit solo HRs for the Sox.
The Royals defeat the Blue Jays 9-3 as rookie P Chad Durbin allows just 1 hit in 6 innings in his 1st big league start and 2nd big league appearance. The Royals score all 9 of their runs in the 6th inning.
The Braves defeat the Phillies 11-3 behind Greg Maddux. Maddux hits a HR and 2-run single in Atlanta's 8-run 4th inning becoming the first pitcher since Todd Stottlemyre in 1996 to get 2 hits in the same inning.
The U.S. government garnishes Denny McLain's pension in order to reimburse the pension fund that he was convicted of laundering money from. McLain was recently divorced and under the terms of the settlement all of the assets went to his wife including his pension while McLain got all of the debts. But a federal judge overruled that and ordered that all of McLain's pension benefits be used to reimburse his victims.
The Cleveland Indians request permission from the Securities and Exchange Commission to sell shares of the team to the public. Plans are made for an initial offering of 4 million shares.
Padres pitching prospect Matt LaChappa 20 suffers a massive heart attack while warming up for the Rancho Cucamunga Quakes.
Warming up in the outfield before the Indians' game with Toronto Albert Belle heaves a ball at photographer Tony Tomsic hitting him. Belle contends that it wasn't deliberate even though it was his second throw near Tomsic and even though he warned the photog not to snap his picture. The league will open an investigation in two weeks and Tomsic will file a law suit on December 12th. The Indians win the game defeating the Blue Jays 5-3.
Tiger CF Melvin Nieves bangs two doubles a triple and a homer as the Tigers top the A's 6-1. Nieves was acquired from the Padres in a spring training trade.
The Twins hand the Orioles their first loss of the year topping the O's 8-3. Cal Ripken fumbles a grounder in the 5th inning stopping his errorless streak at 74 games.
In his NL debut Cubs P Juan Guzman takes a perfect game into the 8th inning against Atlanta finally settling for a 1-hit 1-0 victory. Otis Nixon's single with 2 outs in the 9th is the Braves' only hit.
The Phils Mitch Williams changes his uniform number from 28 to 99 the highest number in history. He picks up a save today and vows to throw at 99 mph every outing.
Toronto's Jack Morris sets a record with his 13th consecutive Opening Day start as he goes all the way in defeating the Tigers 4-2.
Mets reliever Jeff Innis is credited with the win over the Cardinals in NY's 4-2 Opening Day victory. In 1991 Innis became the only pitcher in baseball history to appear in at least 60 games with neither a win nor a save.
In the Royals 3-2 win over the Blue Jays Kansas City batters combine for just 20 at bats. This is one shy of the ML record for fewest at bats which Baltimore set on September 12 1964 versus Kansas City. Toronto allows 8 walks made 3 DPs and KC has a sac and 2 sac flies.
The largest crowd ever to see a baseball game in Minnesota-52279-turns out for the inaugural game at the brand-new Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. Twins rookie 3B Gary Gaetti goes 4-for-4 with a pair of home runs and is thrown out trying to stretch a triple into a 3rd round tripper. But Seattle wins 11-7.
In New York a foot of snow cancels the Yankees opener with the Rangers at the Stadium. Tomorrow's game with Texas and the first two with the White Sox will also be canceled because of snow and ice. With 2 games snowed out in Chicago the Red Sox will return tomorrow to Winter Haven FL.
At Baltimore manager Earl Weaver wins his 1000th game as a skipper as the O's open with a 5-3 win over the White Sox. Jim Palmer allows 3 hits to win. Rich Dauer who ended the 1978 season by driving in a run in 10 straight games adds another game to the streak with an infield out.
In a rain-delayed season opener in Cincinnati Houston's Terry Puhl leads off with a homer against Tom Seaver who allows 5 runs in 3 innings. But led by Joe Morgan's pair of two-run doubles and a homer the Reds prevail 11-9. In the bottom of the 7th with Morgan on 3B and George Foster on 1B Dan Driessen strikes out and Foster is caught stealing 2B Ferguson to Roger Metzger. Morgan tries to score on the play and is thrown out on the return. According to Retrosheet this is apparently the first triple play begun with a strikeout. In 1982 the Twins will start a triple play with a strikeout.
The Seattle Mariners make their debut‚ losing to Frank Tanana and the Angels 7-0. Joe Rudi is 3-for-4 with a homer and 4 RBIs. The loser for the M's is Diego Segui‚ who pitched for the Seattle Pilots Opener in 1969‚ a 4-3 loss at Anaheim. Segui is the only player to appear for both the Pilots and the Mariners.
Despite a snowfall of 4 inches this morning the Reds open against the Padres winning 5-3. The snow which stops falling at 11:30 is cleared out of the stadium a half hour before the game's start.
The Yankees open their two-year stay at Shea Stadium before a crowd of 20744. 12-year-old Teddy Kennedy Jr. flanked by his father and Mayor Abe Beame tosses out the first ball. Missing from the ceremony is George Steinbrenner indicted two days ago for illegal campaign contributions. Greg Nettle's two-run homer in the 4th off the Indians Gaylord Perry opens the scoring and the Yanks score 4 more times to win 6-1. Charlie Spikes scores the only Cleveland run in the 9th following a triple off starter and winner Mel Stottlemyre. Perry who is warned once for an illegal pitch is the loser today but he will win his next 15 decisions.
The Twins set a team record for runs‚ rolling over the Royals‚ 23-6. Twenty of the runs are earned.
At Fenway Park‚ the first ball is thrown out by Ed Folger‚ a Boston Red Sox farm hand who had his legs amputated last September following a farm accident. In the top of the first inning, Ron Blomberg of the New York Yankees becomes the first regular season designated history in major league history when he faces righthander Luis Tiant. Blomberg walks with the bases loaded and winds up 1-for-3 in the 15-5 loss to the Boston. Sox DH Orlando Cepeda goes 0-for-6‚ but Carlton Fisk strokes two homers‚ one a grand slam‚ in the 20-hit Boston assault. Second baseman Doug Griffin notches four hits for Boston‚ which overcomes a 3-0 by scoring eight runs to chase Mel Stottlemyre by the third inning. The Yanks record eight hits off Tiant‚ five by the Alou brothers, Matty and Felipe.
Willie Mays a month shy of his 40th birthday homers (his 629th) on the first pitch he sees in a 4-0 Opening Day Giants win over the Padres. He also laces a double. Mays will go on to hit homers in each of the Giants first 4 games of the season a ML record. Juan Marichal wins on a 5-hitter.
At Fenway Park the Red Sox take their second straight Opener against the Yankees winning 3-1. Boston's Ray Culp allows 5 hits in 9 innings in winning over Stan Bahnsen who gives up 2 runs in 7 innings. Reggie Smith has 3 hits and his throw to the plate in the 8th gets the last out.
Before 41121 at Chicago Billy Williams clubs a 10th inning homer off Bob Gibson to give the Cubs a 2-1 win over the Cards. Joe Torre's homer off Fergie Jenkins is the only Cardinal score.
At Houston Claude Osteen allows 4 hits and rookie Bill Buckner's homer accounts for all the scoring as the Dodgers beat the Astros 2-0. Don Wilson takes the loss. Osteen was 6-0 last year against Houston.
In the last home opener at Crosley Field the Reds top the Expos 5-1 behind Jim Merritt. It is the first win for manager Sparky Anderson. The Reds have 3 homers in the 4th when Lee May Bernie Carbo and Bobby Tolan connect. It is Carbo's first ML hit. Joe Sparma takes the loss.
Vedie Himsl is designated as head coach of the Cubs for the first 2 weeks of the season.
The International League votes to open its season in Havana unless the political and social strife in Cuba worsens.
A howling windstorm of 50 mph does not deter the Red Sox and Reds from playing an exhibition game in Florence SC but the weather and the rock-hard infield results in the game being called in the 9th inning when all 54 baseballs have been disappeared. "Grounders were actually blown off the ground and over the outfield fences" observed Lou Smith in the Cincinnati Enquirer. The score is 18-18 when the game ends with both teams covered with grime.
The Albuquerque Dons (Class D Arizona-Texas League) open the season with a 43-15 win over the El Paso Longhorns.
The Giants play their first night game a 9-1 exhibition win against their Bridgeport CT farm team in Bridgeport. The Giants won't play a night game at home until 1940.
Playing in the Philadelphia city series between the A's and the Phillies Ty Cobb makes an unassisted DP.
The International League changes its name to the Eastern Association because it no longer has any Canadian clubs.
Sacramento (California League) beats visiting Stockton 36-1 in just 7 innings taking 2:10 to do it. Sacramento CF Goodenough is 5 for 8 and scores 6 runs. Stockton commits 16 errors.
The Tourists arrive back in NYC having staged 28 games overseas since leaving the U.S. on November 18.
Two days after winds have blown down the fence at Cincinnati's UA grounds high winds destroy much of the fence at NY's Polo Grounds and at Metropolitan Park new home of the Mets.
The Mutual club of New York leaves on the steamer General Barnes for Savannah Georgia. where they will start their southern tour with a game on April 10.