Koufax: 18 K’s, take two

On April 24, 1962, Sandy Koufax became the first major league pitcher to strike out 18 batters on two separate occasions. Koufax led the Los Angeles Dodgers to a 10-2 victory over the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field. His first 28 strikeout game on August 31, 1959 in a 5-2 Dodgers’ home victory over the…

Friendly Confines opens for pros

On April 23, 1914, the first major league game was held at Weeghman Park, now Wrigley Field, the Chicago Whales (also known as the Federals or ChiFeds) defeated  Kansas City 9-1. The Federals played in the newly forming Federal League, were intended to be the city’s third professional team, creating more competition for the Cubs and White…

Ryan strikes out 5,000

On April 22, 1989, Nolan Ryan became the first, and remains the only, Major League Baseball pitcher to strike out 5,000 batters when the Texas Ranger faced Oakland Athletics star Rickey Henderson. Ryan entered the game 14-7 with 219 strikeouts, and needed six to reach the milestone. Henderson, who retired as the all-time walks leader, led off the top…

The Great One bids us adieu

On April 18, 1999, number 99, Wayne Gretzky skated off the ice for last time as a professional hockey player following a 2-1 New York Rangers loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins in overtime. Gretzky’s lone point in the game came from an assist. Brian Leetch scored the Ranger’s only goal. The Great One slowly made his…

Rose hits #1 and #4,000

On April 13, 1963, Cincinnati Reds slugger, Pete Rose tripled for his first hit as a Major League Baseball player and exactly 21 years later he hit number 4,000 as a Montreal Expo. Rose’s first hit came in the seventh inning off of Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Bob Friend. The Reds lost 12-4.  Rose helped the Expos…

Bonds and godfather share spotlight

On April 12, 2004, Barry Bonds tied godfather, Willie Mays with his 660th home run, third on the all-time list. Mays met Bonds on the field shortly after he finished rounding the bases with a hug and kiss. The Say Hey Kid presented his godson with an torch carried in the 2002 Salt Lake Olympic Torch Relay. The…

The Sultan of Swat takes the mound

On April 11, 1917, Baseball Hall of Fame slugger, Babe Ruth allowed three hits as he pitched for the Boston Red Sox in a 10-3 victory over the New York Yankees. The Red Sox snagged a 2-0 lead in the first inning. Fritz Maisel, Wally Pipp and Home Run Baker rounded the bases for the Yankees, scoring the team’s only…