Baseball History for March 3rd

<— MARCH 2     MARCH 4 —>


1858 Monk Cline
1858 Harry Wheeler
1859 Honest John Kelly

Player, umpire, boxing referee, saloon operator – and always thought to be on the level.

1860 John Montgomery Ward

Important player and lawyer in the early days of baseball. Helped build the game, and then tried valiantly to help protect the men who played it. Started out as a pitcher, winning 69 and losing just 32 before turning 20… After 1884, he shifted to the outfield and then shortstop and was a great player there, too. Took a couple of years to figure out hitting regularly but after years of hitting around .250, turned out seasons of .338 and .335. Once wrote a great “how to…” book on baseball. Another biography worth reading.

1862 Jumbo Schoeneck
1872 Willie Keeler

MVP of the 3/3 Birthday club… Giants thought they had better options and was allowed to go to Brooklyn and then to Baltimore. There, he became the greatest leadoff hitter of his day. Eight straight years with more than 200 hits, lots of triples, and lot of stolen bases. Rarely ever struck out, too. His 44 game hitting streak to open the 1897 season was the record until DiMaggio and Rose passed him in both leagues.

1879 Ed Phelps
1880 Joe Koukalik
1884 Joe Knotts
1886 Les Channell
1888 Art Bues
1895 Joe Jaeger
1896 Bert Griffith
1899 Percy Wilson
1907 Jim Tennant
1910 Bill Brenzel
1910 Ormond Sampson
1912 Aubrey Epps
1916 Bill Kalfass
1916 Johnny Johnson
1918 Forrest Thompson
1918 Bill Hoffman
1919 Bud Souchock
1920 Dick Adkins
1921 Roy Nichols
1923 Barney Martin
1925 George Eyrich
1934 Bobby Locke
1942 Bob Garibaldi
1942 Don Dennis
1943 Paul Schaal

Answer to the trivia question “Who was the third baseman in KC before George Brett?”, which is slightly unfair because Schaal was a pretty good player himself.

1943 Ed Sukla
1943 Jack DiLauro

Briefly a member of the Miracle Mets – then shipped to Houston, and poof (!) was gone.

1949 Jesse Jefferson

Came up as the Orioles were rolling and had nowhere to go – didn’t work out in Chicago, either. Wound up a primary starter on the first Toronto Blue Jays team.

1950 Grady Little
1955 Jim Wright
1957 Skeeter Barnes
1960 Neal Heaton
1960 Chuck Cary
1961 Ron Wotus
1965 Bert Heffernan
1965 A. J. Sager
1966 Francisco de la Rosa
1968 Scott Radinsky
1968 Bobby Munoz
1971 Jose Oliva
1972 Mike Romano
1976 Matt Treanor

Serviceable backup catcher who is the Ray Knight of today – he’s married to Olympic gold medalist and volleyball star, Misty May (Treanor).

1978 Matt Diaz
1979 Jorge Julio
1979 John Nelson
1983 Brent Dlugach
1986 Eric Farris
1992 Harrison Musgrave
1994 Jose Rondon
1994 Dilson Herrera
1995 Zack Kelly
1997 Humberto Mejia
1997 Kyle Isbell
2000 Maikel Garcia


1894 Ned Williamson

I worked with my friend Sam Gadziak of RIP Baseball on a biography of Williamson that was provided for a ceremony when SABR placed a gravestone at the site of Williamson’s grave in Chicago.

1901 Charles Snyder
1905 Stump Weidman
1913 Jack Fee
1923 Harry Clarke
1923 Ducky Hemp
1932 Ed Morris
1934 Mike O’Rourke
1941 Doc Parker
1942 John Buckley
1942 Clay Fauver
1942 Dan O’Connor
1943 Bill Whaley
1946 Hick Cady
1951 Dan Bickham
1953 Clyde Milan
1960 Toussaint Allen
1964 Lefty Scott
1970 Bill McAllester
1970 Jimmy Claxton
1977 Stubby Overmire
1977 Cecil Johnson
1978 Ted Strong

Ted Strong was a Negro League star – batted like Rod Carew with, say Keith Hernandez’s power.  A first baseman and right fielder (though he played many other positions when needed), Strong may well have won a triple crown in 1946 (and earlier in his career, led his league in stolen bases).  His career, like many of this period, was interrupted by WWII, but I’m under the impression that hardly anyone knows just how good this guy was.  I see a research project in my future.  Oh – and he was a member of the Harlem Globetrotters.

1980 Jerry Priddy
1983 Jennings Poindexter
1986 Paul Castner
1989 Bill Harvey
1991 Dizzy Royal
1992 George Giles
1997 Billy Jurges
1997 Harry Davis
1997 Jake Bell
1999 John Brown
2007 Gene Oliver
2010 Frank Bertaina
2010 Hank Small
2012 Lloyd Hittle
2012 Jim Obradovich
2018 Curt Raydon
2021 Joe Altobelli


You really didn’t miss anything truly historic… Go see a spring training game!


1940 Boston sells outfielder Deb Garms to Pittsburgh.

1947 The Browns sign an aging Joe Medwick.

1964 Milwaukee signs amateur free agent Cecil Upshaw.

1983 Texas signs non-drafted free agent Jerry Browne.

1991 The Dodgers sign non-drafted free agent Roger Cedeno.


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