May 22, 2013
And here's the full roster.
Now availableHardball Times Baseball Annual 2013, with 300 pages of great content. It's also available on Amazon and Kindle. Read more about it here.
Or you can search by:
THT E-bookThird Base: The Crossroads is THT's e-book, available for $3.99 from the Kindle store. The good news is that anyone can read a Kindle book, even on a PC. So enjoy the best from THT in a new format.
our CafePress store. We've got baseball caps, t-shirts, coffee mugs and even wall clocks with the classy THT logo prominently displayed. Also, check out the THT Bookstore. Please support your favorite baseball site by purchasing something today.
All content on this site (including text, graphs, and any other original works), unless otherwise noted, is licensed under a Creative Commons License.
About Richard BarbieriBorn and raised in New York City, Richard still lives there to this day. He works full-time at a large New York City government agency, a job which funds both his apartment and the many, many baseball books that occupy that space. But not much else.
Note: This page displays up to 200 articles at a time. To view a subset of a writer's work, click on one of the following years:
2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004
Richard Barbieri's Articles
Click here to view an RSS feed of this writer's articles.
The 1940s saw the Second World War and the integration of baseball; did these monumental events make for quality teams?
Richard's trusty scorebook tells some of the best, worst and strangest tales.
The 1930s were a decade known for The Great Depression—but did that mean that the talent was in a slump as well?
This week, Richard returns to the best players of each decade. The '20 were Roaring, but is the team a winner?
Mets fans have not had much to enjoy since the move to Citi Field. Will 2013 change that?
Once again, Richard buys a pack of Topps and shares what he finds inside
History, as seen on the scoreboard at Yankee Stadium
This week Richard moves forward into the future and presents the best team of the teens.
Richard begins his all-decade teams in earnest. This week: the best players from the beginning of modern baseball history.
After ranking the best teams of players born each month, Richard looks at the best players of each decade—plus a bonus, which starts this month.
Featuring a limerick about Manny Ramirez, 10 important figures described in 60 total words and a story about Joe McEwing.
With all 12 teams assembled, Richard looks at their individual components and selects the very best month
It is just one week to Thanksgiving. Before you tuck in, take a look at the best players November has to offer!
Richard once again looks back on some of the worst games, this time for a whole new set of teams
In the middle of this year's playoffs, the first of the new format, Richard looks back on which teams were most dominant during the days of just one wild card
October is the home of postseason heroics. Is it the birth of heroes on the field as well?
As baseball approaches its stretch run, Richard looks at the best of the best born that month
This month, Richard went to four baseball games—and counting. His observations ...
August might be the hottest month of the year, but are its players the best?
After looking at some franchises' worst of the worst, this week Richard looks at July's best of the best
A few teams—and a few truly miserable games.
Richard makes the NY sports fan pilgrimage to the Ebbets Field site
Richard looks back at the best of June
Franchises, and the presidents who watched them win
May might be the fifth month, but these players are all first-rate
Richard looks back at baseball's best and brightest of April
How much baseball has a college freshman seen?
This week Richard opens up a bag of potpourri: all those stories not quite big enough for their own column.
It's Richard's birthday, and he presents the team to go along with it!
Richard buys a his annual pack of Topps to see what knowledge can be found inside
Can the shortest month of the year field a team to compete with the others?
Does Edgar Martinez deserve a spot in the Hall of Fame?
Continuing his project of finding which month is best, Richard takes a look at January's gang
In the first of a series, Richard looks at the best players from the year's final month
Less than 20 shopping days left until Christmas. In the spirit of the (off) season, Richard suggests some books.
From Weihe to Bass; follow the path
Is the Ranger lefty the missing jewel in the Yankee crown?
On November 4, 2009 the Yankees won the World Series. For the Yankees, this represented their twenty-seventh championship, but was also an important win in another tally. Richard explains why.
The offense is strong as usual, but who will take the bump behind Sabathia?
On September 17, 1941, Stan Musial made his debut for the St. Louis Cardinals, the only franchise for which he would ever play.
On Sept. 10, 1999, Pedro Martinez pitched the greatest game Richard has ever seen.
In honor of the blackouts caused through the East Coast by Hurricane Irene, Richard looks at some hitters who were lacking power themselves.
On Aug. 25, 1970, Doug Glanville—perhaps the most prominent of recent Ivy League ballplayers—was born. In his honor, the All-Ivy team.
August 17 is the traditional Roman celebration of Janus, the god with two faces. In honor of this, Richard looks at the best of switch-hitters.
This week Richard’s column goes to the birds as he looks back on some of the notable aviary events in baseball history that centered on this week.
On July 30, 2011 Richard will be running a half-marathon. In honor of his run, he looks at the distance travelled by some notable players.
On July 20, 1901 Heinie Manush was born. Richard looks back at his Hall of Fame career.
On July 4, 1859, Mickey Welch was born. He became one of just five pitchers to win 300 games before the 20th century.
On June 29, 1936, Harmon Killebrew was born. Richard looks back on his Hall of Fame career.
A look at Jack McKeon's path to managing again at 80 years old
On June 15, 1938, Billy Williams was born. This week Richard looks back on his life and career.
On June 8, 1925, Eddie Gaedel was born. This got Richard thinking about other famous one-game players.
On May 23, 2008, Richard went to his first game at Coors Field. Today, he writes about the park's history.
On May 21, 1902 Earl Averill was born. "The Earl of Snohomish” would become a six-time All-Star and a Hall of Famer.
On May 12, 1935 Felipe Alou was born. He was the first of the Alou dynasty to reach the majors, but where does the family patriarch fall on the scale of similar players?
On May 6, 1994, Anthony Young won a game he started for the first time in more than two years, linking him to Ike Pearson and Dolly Gray, to say nothing of Spud Chandler and Jon Lester.
On April 28, 1788, Maryland ratified the U.S. Constitution, the seventh state to do so. In honor of its joining the Union, Richard creates the All-Maryland team.
Looking through a pack of baseball cards to see what history can be found in Topps’ 2011 set.
On April 12, 1880, Addie Joss was born. Joss played only nine seasons and won just 160 games but still earned Hall of Fame election in 1978.
Taking a break from writing history, Richard reviews The House That Ruth Built, the story of the original Yankee Stadium's inaugural season.
On April 2, 1869, Hugh Jennings was born. Through his life, he would be known as Hughie, Ee-Yah and finally as a Hall of Famer.
On March 24, 1951, Tommy Hilfiger was born. What does that have to do with baseball? Surely he could have designed better uniforms than these.
A two-for-one special recapping the careers of “Little Poison” and “Big Poison.”
The first of a series looking at the keys to the 2011 season for all 30 teams.
In honor of his upcoming 27th birthday, Richard looks back at some of the great seasons ever posted by men that age.
On Feb. 20, 1975, Livan Hernandez was born. He's is part of a rare club: pitchers with more than 150 victories despite an ERA+ less than 100.
On February 18, 1915, Joe Gordon was born. The 1942 Most Valuable Player and nine-time All-Star, “Flash” was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2009. Richard looks back at his life and career.
On Feb. 6, 1895 Babe Ruth was born. Many would consider him a no doubt choice for the list of 10 most influential figures in baseball history, but does he deserve it?
On Jan. 30, 2011 the NFL Pro Bowl was played. Though that football game is Hawaii's sports highlight, this does not mean the state has not produced baseball players.
On January 29, 1960 Steve Sax was born. Sax’s career took him from Rookie of the Year to Simpsons guest star to “Steve Sax Syndrome.” Richard looks back on these moments and more.
On Jan. 21, 1916 Germany Schaefer was purchased by the New York Yankees. For a simple transaction, there are a number of good stories involved.
On January 13, 1939, Jacob Ruppert died. Ruppert was a National Guard colonel, a four-term Congressman and a Brewery owner, but his real fame came from ownership of the New York Yankees.
On January 7, 1982 Francisco Rodriguez—K-Rod to his fans—was born. This is just one of the historically important closer births this week.
This week Richard moves into his new apartment. In honor of the move, he looks back at the first season by players who moved to a new home and did so for many millions of dollars.
On December 7, 1976 the Seattle Mariners traded Grant Jackson to the Pirates for Craig Reynolds and Jimmy Sexton. The trade is notable, but not for the players involved.
On November 30, 1998 Randy Johnson signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks. This would prove to be one of the great contracts of all-time for a pitcher. Richard looks at this and other deals.
On Nov. 19, 1892 Everett Scott was born. Scott is the answer to a trivia question that puts him in common with players like Steve Garvey and Matt Kemp.
On November 8, 1896, Bucky Harris was born. Richard continues to fill in the gaps in his Hall of Fame education with a look back at the life and career of the "The Boy Wonder."
November 5 is the birth date of players who earned seven All-Star appearances, hit more than 800 home runs, and won more than 400 games. But it is also the birthday of a number of players with a memorable name.
On October 27, 1922 Ralph Kiner was born. As with many Hall of Famers from before his time, Richard knows only the basics of Kiner’s career. This week he looks back to learn more.
While the League Championships Series continue this week, Richard looks back at some notable leaders in those series, which are often overlooked.
On Oct. 8, 1927 the World Series ended in a rather unusual way, giving the powerhouse Yankees the title. Richard looks back at this and other last moments of the fall classic.
On September 20, 1958 Hoyt Wilhelm threw a no-hitter against the New York Yankees. That remains the last time a single pitcher no-hit the Bronx Bombers. Richard looks back at this and other franchise no-hitter records.
On September 17, 1960 John Franco was born. Franco recorded 424 saves in his career, a number which still stands as a record, one under fire this season. Richard looks back on his life and career.
On September 11, 1999 the Minnesota Twins gave any pajama-clad fan free admission. Richard looks back at this and other unusual promotions.
On August 24, 1960 Cal Ripken Jr. was born. After a 21-year career, justly rewarded with a plaque in Cooperstown, Ripken continues to be involved in the game at both the youth and professional levels. Few in baseball can compare with Ripken’s fame; Richard looks at them this week.
On Aug. 17, 1977 Mike Maroth was born. Maroth holds a dubious distinction: He was the last pitcher to lose 20 games.
On August 12, 1940 Ernest Lawrence Thayer, the author of Casey at the Bat died in California. Richard looks back at the history of the man himself, and the work that made him famous.
August 3 has seen several events in baseball’s past which are unlikely to be repeated any time soon. Richard looks back at the unusual history which accompanies this day.
This Sunday Richard went to see the Long Island Ducks of the independent Atlantic League play. He comes back with some observations on the nature of baseball outside the major league hierarchy.
On July 15, 1999 Safeco Field opened in Seattle. That meant the end of major league baseball at the Kingdome, which hosted the game from 1977 until that date without ever seeing a title. Richard looks at other, similar parks.
On June 28, 1962, Mickey Cochrane died. In honor of his passing, Richard looks back on the man known as "Black Mike."
June 20 was Father’s Day this year. In honor of celebrating Dad, Richard looks back on some of the notable Senior and Junior pairs in major league history.
On June 13, 1953, Bob Elliott was sent to the Chicago White Sox. This was the last major league franchise the man known as “Mr. Team” would play for, but that does not mean his story is worth passing up.
On June 10, 1947, Ken Singleton was born. Richard looks back on his life and career.
On June 3, 1993, Alex Rodriguez was drafted as the first pick in the first round of the amateur draft by the Seattle Mariners. He is the best player taken in that spot since the draft began in 1965. Richard looks at some others.
On May 26, 1973, Louis “Chicken” Hawks died in California. Hawks had a limited career, so he did not make the cut for Richard’s All-Bird Team. Read on to find out who did.
This past week, both Mariano Rivera and Jonathan Papelbon suffered blown saves. This got Richard to think about some of the playoff blown save superlatives in baseball history.
On May 8, 1893, Edd Roush was born. Before his major league career ended in 1931 he would win two batting titles, top forty doubles and thirty steals, and win a World Series. Richard looks back at his career.
On April 27, 1983, Nolan Ryan broke the all-time strikeout record previously held by Walter Johnson. Richard looks back on the Ryan Express and his career.
On April 23, St. George’s Day will be celebrated around the world. In honor of the man himself, Richard presents the All-George Team, the best of the best of those who share their name with the dragon slayer.
This week Richard takes a break from looking at the history of baseball, and interviews a pair of men—including a 300-game winner—seeking to help define baseball's technological future.
On April 8, 1966, the Houston Astros had their home opener. Though this was the second Opening Day at the Astrodome, it was the first to be played on AstroTurf. In honor of this event, Richard looks back on the history of "artificial grass."
On April 3, 1989, Ken Griffey Jr. made his major league debut. Since then he has created a Hall of Fame career for himself, but one honor—a World Series title—has eluded him. Richard looks at other great players with no ring.
On March 25, 1951, Eddie Collins died. Richard looks back at the career of this all-time great player.
On March 18, 2010, the NCAA men’s basketball tournament will begin. In honor of this event, Richard looks back on the handful of players who saw time in the big leagues of both baseball and basketball.
On March 10, 2009, the Dominican Republic's World Baseball Classic squad lost its second game to the unheralded Netherlands, knocking the Dominicans out of the tournament. But all is not lost for the DR, as this week Richard looks back at the best pitchers to come from the country.
On March 4, 1944, the Philadelphia Phillies officially changed their name to the Philadelphia Blue Jays. Obviously, it failed to take. Richard looks back on that and other name changes across baseball history.
On Feb. 24, 1926, Eddie Plank died in Gettysburg, Pa. Gettysburg Eddie, nicknamed for the town where he was born, educated and died, won 326 games and two World Series during his 17-year career. Richard looks back at the A’s lefty.
Fifty different men who have played in the major leagues were born on Feb. 20. And as luck would have it, several of them earned a memorable name. Richard looks back on a few.
As "Snowmageddon" continues, paralyzing much of the East Coast, Richard looks at players who might be at home in such weather.
On Feb. 4, 1909, John Clarkson died in a Massachusetts psychiatric hospital. It was an unfortunate and inglorious end to the life of a man who is still one of the five winningest right-handed pitchers in National League history. Richard looks back on his life.
On Jan. 26, 1813, Juan Pablo Duarte was born. Duarte would go to a life as a leader in the movement to establish the Dominican Republic as an independent nation. In his honor, Richard brings you the All-Dominican Team.
This week Richard received his copy of Chris Jaffe’s Evaluating Baseball’s Managers. In honor of the work, he attempts to assemble the "All-Manager Team."
The past two years have seen the NHL stage the Winter Classic at two of baseball’s most famous parks. But on Jan. 16, 1884, a legendary baseball figure helped stage a baseball game unlike any you have ever seen, but one fans of the NHL could appreciate.
As the first week of 2010 begins, Richard rolls back the clock to look at what stories might be news around this same time a century ago.
On Dec. 14, 1963, the final game at the Polo Grounds—a 19-10 defeat of the New York Titans by the Buffalo Bills—took place. Richard looks back at the park, and visits the location where it once stood.
On Nov. 29, 1969, Mariano Rivera was born. Richard looks back at the career of the greatest short reliever of all time.
On November 25, 1951 Bucky Dent was born. Dent had his brief, memorable moment in the sun, and of course, that is practically the only thing people know about him. Richard looks at other, similar players.
On Nov. 18, 1967, Tom Gordon was born. Gordon is one of only a handful of pitchers in the "3-100 Club"—those with 100 games started, wins and saves. Richard looks at the entire group.
On Nov. 12, 1993, Bill Dickey died. The former Yankee catcher was an all-time great, a Hall of Famer, 11-time All-Star and career .313 hitter. Dickey also played on eight teams that won a World Series; only two players have more. But this week Richard looks back on the unfortunate souls not so lucky.
Oct. 31 is Halloween, the day when people everywhere dress up and head out to trick-or-treat and maybe put a scare into their neighbors. Richard looks back at the men born on this day and what might scare them.
On Oct. 18, 1988, a walk-off home run was hit in the World Series off of an All-Star reliever. But this isn't Kirk Gibson off Dennis Eckersley, it is Mark McGwire and Jay Howell. Richard looks back at this and other memorable postseason series featuring multiple walk-offs.
As it turns out, the final regular season game of 2009 would not take place until Oct. 6, 2009—and what a game it was. But that hasn’t been enough to change Richard’s All-Decade team; today he completes the roster started last week.
On Sept. 27, the final week of the games for the 2009 season began. This is also, of course, the last week of games for the decade that began in 2000. Richard looks back and presents the first half of his team of the decade.
On Sept. 14, 1853 Jake Goodman was born. He is the earliest born man from that date to debut in the Major Leagues, while the latest is Delmon Young, born on this date in 1985. Richard looks back at the players who connect them.
On Sept. 9, 1913 Hugh Mulcahy was born. Or, as he was known during his nine-year career "Losing Pitcher" Mulcahy. That is what happens when you have the misfortune of pitching for some of the worst teams in baseball history.
When it comes to great moments, historic games and memorable plays, Richard will admit that Sept. 4 does not notably stand out. But that doesn't mean the history of what took place on that isn't worth hearing, especially if you appreciate the more unusual bits in baseball history.
On Aug. 23, 2009, Eric Bruntlett turned just the 15th unassisted triple play in major league history. Richard, who was there to see it, looks at the history of of one of baseball's rarest plays.
Richard celebrates his return to regular column work after a brief summer vacation by looking back at notables whose birthdays were his first week back.
On July 31, 2004 Dave Roberts was traded to the Red Sox. Though he would play only 45 games in a Boston uniform, it is his one moment in the 2004 playoffs that is remembered, to the exclusion of the rest of his career. Richard looks at similar players.
On July 21, 1997 Curt Schilling pitched eight innings against the Pirates, striking out 15. For his trouble, he was rewarded with a loss. That isn’t an everyday occurrence, but it does happen more than one might suspect.
On July 14, 2009 the Major League All-Star game was held. To honor the event, even if he could take it or leave it, Richard looks back at some All-Star history of the past.
On July 9, 1955 Willie Wilson was born. The longtime Kansas City Royal won a World Series, a Gold Glove and two All-Star spots. But is that enough to get him on the All-Wilson Team?
On June 24, 1957, Doug Jones was born. Jones would make his major league debut in 1982 and last through the 2000 season. During that time he not only would have a good career, but also mark a sea change in pitching roles.
On June 14, 1982, the San Diego Padres signed Mitch Williams. Most people know the “Wild Thing” for the home run he allowed in the 1993 World Series. This week Richard looks back at Williams’ other defining characteristic, the one that earned him his nickname.
On June 11, 1919 Sir Barton became the first horse to win the American Triple Crown. That’s a pretty good accomplishment for a horse—it hasn’t been done since 1978—but had of course already been managed in baseball by then. This week Richard looks back at the Triple Crown, the kind achieved with a bat and ball, rather than saddle and whip.
This week, Richard gives every day its due, looking back at a piece of history from every day, spanning the years to bring the interesting historical events of May 31 through June 6.
On May 27, 1968 Jeff Bagwell and Frank Thomas were born. But everyone knows that story. Today Richard looks at the other players born on that date.
On May 21, 1962, the Baltimore Orioles signed Robin Roberts. It seemed to be the marriage of a player on his last legs with a franchise in need of any body capable of taking the field. Instead, it would launch a second wind for the long-time Phillie.
On May 13, 2009, Richard Barbieri attended the Mets game at CitiField. That game was the last to fit in his current scorebook, which has served him since September of 2002. Richard looks back at some of the 99 games of history contained within.
On May 6, 1890, Walton Cruise was born. Eight years later on the same day Al Wingo came into the world. In 1921 it was Dick Wakefield’s big day. These May 6 men are among the players dwarfed by Willie Mays, born on this day in 1931.
On May 1, 1947 the Indians moved permanently into Cleveland Municipal Stadium, also known as “The Mistake by the Lake.” This would be the first of almost 50 years the team spent the venue.
On April 24, 1945, A.B. “Happy” Chandler was elected baseball’s second commissioner. Chandler served into 1951, earning himself election into baseball’s Hall of Fame. But that was just one part of a distinguished life.
On April 14, 1969, Brad Ausmus was born. In his 17-year caree, he has appeared in more games than all but a handful of catchers. During this career, Ausmus posted a historic batting line, which inspired Richard to look at other, similar hitters.
On April 8, 1986 Felix Hernandez was born. The man known as “King Felix” is having a good week—and a good career—so far, but Richard takes a look to see how he compares to young pitchers throughout history.
April 1 was April Fool's Day. Richard did not pull any big pranks, but that doesn't mean there aren't some good ones in baseball history.
On March 8, 1984, Richard Barbieri was born. He’s unlikely to see any time in the major leagues, but plenty of others born on March 8 have. Richard picks the best of them.
On March 5, 2009 the second World Baseball Classic kicked off as Japan shut out China. The clear favorites in this year's pool are Japan and Korea, two countries with well-known baseball histories, but today Richard looks at less baseball-oriented Asian countries.
On Feb. 23, 1960, demolition began on Ebbets Field in Brooklyn. Nearly 50 years later, demolition is nearly finished on Shea Stadium, the home of New York’s most recent National League franchise. Richard looks back at other past stadium sites.
The week of Feb. 15 featured a number of notable events in baseball history. Richard looks back at several.
As always, Valentine’s Day will be Feb. 14. In the past, Richard has looked back at baseball Valentines. This year, he celebrates players who share their name with the emotional center of the holiday.
On Feb. 5, 1934 Hank Aaron was born in Alabama. Aaron is the all-time leader in RBI, total bases and extra-base hits. Of course, not all records are quite as notable. This week Richard looks back on some lesser-known all-time leaders.
On Jan. 31, 1891, Goat Cochran was born. Cochran was just one of the players born on this date who would go on to earn a memorable moniker. Richard looks at some of the more distinctively dubbed players.
On Jan. 21, 1972 Alan Benes was born. In his major league career, he would win 29 games, or 126 fewer than his older brother Andy. Richard returns to one of his favorite subjects, looking at the "other brother" of great pitching families.
On Jan. 16, 1980 Albert Pujols was born. The greatness of "Prince Albert" is in no dispute—his second MVP attesting to the fact—but this week Richard looks back to see just how Pujols compares to great hitters of the past.
On Jan. 10, 2000, Aaron Sele signed a two-year contract with the Seattle Mariners—but only because Orioles owner Peter Angelos nixed a four-year contract due to his concerns about arm trouble. Angelos' moves have reduced his once-proud franchise to embarrassment.
On Dec. 15, 1967, Mo Vaughn was born. Vaughn would be a solid hitter, but also would make 139 errors in his career. As a first baseman, Vaughn topped the table in errors a record six times. Richard did not err quite so frequently this year, but he is only human. Read on....
On Dec. 11, 1959 the Yankees dealt Don Larsen, Hank Bauer and others to the Kansas City Athletics for three players, most notably Roger Maris. This was just one of the many trades between the two franchises during the period, which helped the Yankees dynasty continue and doomed the A's to a series of second division finishes.
On Dec. 1, 1954, the Yankees and Orioles completed a trade that had begun on Nov. 14. Don Larsen, Bob Turley and Gene Woodling were just a sixth of the players involved in this 18-player deal, still the largest in major league history.
On October 26, 2008 Joe Blanton hit his first career home run. He did it in the World Series no less, becoming just the 13th pitcher to hit a World Series home run. Richard looks back at other postseason homers struck by the men who spend their time on the mound.
On Nov. 4, Richard will depart for Australia. In honor of his visit "Down Under," he looks at the Australians who have reached the major leagues.
On Oct. 22, 1910, Jimmy Sheckard had the first walk-off hit in postseason history. Since then there have been 104 more by 97 more men.
Oct. 15 is the birthday of both Mule Haas (1903) and Mule Watson (1896). While there hasn’t been a “Mule” in the majors in some time, the nickname has an admirable history.
On Oct. 4, 1944, Tony LaRussa was born. Like many great skippers, if LaRussa the manager had been stuck with lots of LaRussa players, many wins likely would not have come.
On Sept. 22, 1946 Larry Dierker was born. He would go on to be the Houston franchise leader in innings pitched, starts and complete games. After his playing career, he became the Astros leader in managerial winning percentage.
On Sept. 9, 1850, the state of California was born. To celebrate the birthday of a state that has produced more major leaguers than any other state, and more players than all foreign countries put together, Richard creates an all-California team.
On Sept. 5, 1903 Joe Tinker hit home run No. 10,000 in major league baseball history. As another landmark homer approaches. Richard looks back on some of the numerically notable round-trippers of all time.
On Aug. 25, 1937 Clarence Coleman was born. Like George Ruth and Denton Young, his place in the game’s history would come with a nickname. Unfortunately for "Choo Choo" Coleman, it would not come with the greatness Babe and Cy enjoyed.
On Aug. 23, 1870, George Davis was born. He would go on to a Hall of Fame career that reflected both the excellence of the player and the era in which he played.
On Aug. 12, 2008, the Boston Red Sox managed to blow a 10-run lead, then rally back to win. On Aug. 5, 2001, the Seattle Mariners, who'd win 116 games that season, took a 14-2 lead into the bottom of the seventh. Surely a 12-run lead would be safe, right?
On July 30, 1962 Gene Conley returned to the Red Sox after having wandered off from his team and attempting to…actually, you won’t believe it until you hear the whole story.
On July 21, 1958 Dave Henderson was born. "Hendu" would have a 14-year All-Star career, but his chance at true historic notoriety slipped away through no fault of his own. But was it for the best?
On July 17, 1961 Ed Reulbach died. "Big Ed" pitched 13 years in the big leagues and won 182 games and two World Series titles. He is notable both for his own accomplishments and for what he can show us about one of today’s best young pitchers.
On July 9, 1851 Red Woodhead was born. Red saw only minor time during the early days of baseball, but commenced a tradition of July 9 being the birthday of, shall we say, intriguingly named players. Richard looks at some.
On June 19, 1903 Lou Gehrig was born. He would die of the disease that now bears his name in 1941. In between, virtually all of the major events of Gehrig’s life took place within the confines of New York. Richard takes a walking tour around the city to look back at Lou Gehrig's New York.
On June 8, 1989, the Pittsburgh Pirates scored 10 runs in the first inning against the Phillies, sending 16 men to the plate in one inning. It was only the first inning, though, and the game proved Yogi Berra’s maxim that it ain’t over 'til it's over.
On June 4, 1986, Barry Bonds hit the first home run of his career. He would have 761 more. This week, Richard looks back on other notable home run hitters’ first time rounding the bases in the major leagues.
On May 29, 1945 John Odom was born. By the time he was in the fifth grade, Odom was known as "Blue Moon," and by the time he was a teenager, he was pitching in the majors. Richard looks back on Odom’s life and career.
On May 14, 1955, Dennis Martinez was born. "El Presidente" would go on to a 23-year career in the major leagues that included a perfect game, battles with alcoholism, and a distinguished record for games won.
On May 5, 1981, Maury Wills lost his job as manager of the Seattle Mariners. Wills had led the team only since Aug. 4 of the year before, but already had one of the most disastrous managerial tenures in history. Richard looks back on the lowlights.
On April 30, 1961 Willie Mays became just the ninth player to hit four home runs in a game. Richard looks back on Mays' feat, and the other men who have clubbed four round-trippers in a single day.
On April 20, 1937, Gee Walker of the Tigers hit for the cycle on Opening Day. Walker managed his feat "in reverse," starting with a homer and working his way down to a single. That’s one of many cycle-related facts that Richard shares this week.
On April 8, 1946, James Augustus Hunter was born. Thanks to the machinations of Charlie Finley, he would be known to the wider world as "Catfish." Richard looks back on Hunter, and the rest of the "All-Sea Creature Team."
On April 1, 1969, the Seattle Pilots traded little-known outfielder Lou Pinella to Kansas City. Thanks to moves like that, a year later Bud Selig bought the Pilots and moved them to Milwaukee. Richard looks back at the history of Seattle’s first major league team.
On March 24, 1961, the New York State Senate approved money for the construction of a baseball stadium in Queens. On that anniversary, Richard looks back at New York’s "other" baseball stadium, one which also will be lost to the ages after this season.
On March 11, 1901, John McGraw announced the signing of Tokohama, a Native American he hoped to deploy at second base for his Baltimore Orioles. That was just one of the transactional shenanigans that took place during this week of March.
On March 8, 1939, Jim Bouton was born. He would go on to fame as a Yankees pitcher and even greater fame as the author of Ball Four. He is one of many baseball writing talents to have a birthday this week.
On Feb. 29, 1968 Lean Blackburne died in Riverside, California. His legacy in baseball, however, lies in a river in New Jersey and continues to this day. Richard looks into just what that legacy entails.
On Feb. 20, 1963 the Chicago Cubs hired Bob Kennedy to be the head man on their team in 1963. This effectively put an end to a unique—and ill-conceived—plan.
On Feb. 10, 2008, Richard visited the supreme location for all things sport in the world. He comes back with a couple of photos, an explanation for his theory and what all of this has to do with baseball.
On Feb. 7, 1979, the Mets acquired Jesse Orosco in a trade. On Sept. 27, 2003, he faced his last major league batter. In between were nearly 9,000 days, 1,252 games and a noteworthy career.
On Jan. 13, 1962 a San Francisco attorney—representing himself—won a lawsuit against the Giants over his seating at the ballpark. That attorney and his lawsuit make for quite the story.
On Jan. 15, 1969 Delino DeShields was born. Under 25 years later, he was dealt to the Dodgers in exchange for Pedro Martinez, one of the worse trades of all-time. This week Richard looks at the careers of the “other men” in such lopsided moves.
On Jan. 9, 1918, Ferrell Anderson was born. A career .261 average in fewer than 100 games belies the incredible achievement of Anderson reaching the major leagues.
On Jan. 2, 1963, David Cone and Edgar Martinez were born. The pair were connected in Game Five of the 1995 ALDS, which was not only a great game, but helped shape baseball for the next decade.
On Dec. 21, 1859, Bill Traffley was born in New York City. He would later make exactly 100 errors in his major league career. New York resident Richard did not make quite that many this year, but still suffered a few misplays.
Inspired by the birth on December 12 of "Flea" Clifton (1909) and "Bugs" Reisigl (1887), Richard looks throughout baseball history and creates the "All-Pest" team.