Thursday, May 7, 2015

5/7: Little Poison Traded, Clarke For The Cycle, Cubs Tamed, Long Balls Galore & More

  • 1903 - For the second time in his career‚ Fred Clarke hit for the cycle and added a walk‚ sacrifice and stolen base‚ but the effort came up short as the Reds beat the Pirates 10-8 at the Palace of the Fans. The Pirates lost Honus Wagner to a temper tantrum after a collision at 2B with Reds IF Jack Morrissey. Hans threatened to punch Morrissey‚ ump Bug Holliday restrained him and the pair then grappled; The Flying Dutchman was suspended for three games. 
  • 1916 - Max Carey homered off Cubs rookie Jimmy Lavender in the fourth to give the Pirates an eventual 1-0 win. The Cubs lost ten 1-0 decisions that year‚ tying the MLB record. Erv Kantlehner tossed a three hitter to top Lavender’s five hit effort at Weeghman Park. 
Max Carey - Pittsburgh Heroes card series
  • 1922 - Buc rookie RF Walter Mueller hit a HR on the first pitch of his career off none other than the Cubs’ Grover Alexander, the first man to accomplish the feat. The Bucs won 11-5 at Wrigley Field with Mueller collecting five RBI to help Hal Cartlson to the win. In four big league seasons, Mueller hit one more HR. 
  • 1925 - SS Glenn Wright snagged the Cards’ Jim Bottomley's ninth-inning line drive, doubled up Jimmy Cooney at second and tagged Rogers Hornsby coming from first to complete the Pirates’ only unassisted triple play in franchise history. It didn’t help; the Bucs lost to St. Louis 10-9 at Forbes Field after taking a 9-4 lead into the eighth inning when the Redbirds scored six times. Eddie Moore had three Bucco hits, as did Al Niehaus, but it wasn’t enough as Emil Yde and Babe Adams were battered in the seventh. 
  • 1930 - Gus Suhr went 3-for-3 with a double, triple, two walks, three runs scored and five RBI as the Bucs blasted the NY Giants 16-8 at Forbes Field. Steve Swetonic pitched 4-1/3 innings of shutout ball to earn the win in relief of Erv Brame. The first five Pirates in the batting order collected 12 hits, four walks, scored 12 times and drove in nine tallies. 
  • 1932 - In an unusual twin bill, the Pirates and Phillies played the opener and the Negro League Homestead Grays hosted the Cleveland Browns in the nightcap. The Bucs lost 5-3 despite rookie Dave Barbee’s pair of triples. The Grays walloped the Browns 21-3; eight of the nine Homestead starters had multiple hits. 
photo: Pacific Coast League Hall of Fame
  • 1941 - Lloyd “Little Poison” Waner was traded to the Boston Braves for pitcher Nick Strincevich, where he rejoined his brother Paul who had been released in the off-season. Afterward, he bumped around the NL, playing for four teams over four years before, re-signing with Pittsburgh as an insurance policy in 1944. He retired after 1945, with 17 years and .319 BA as a Bucco on his way to the Hall of Fame. 
  • 1944 - The Bucs beat the Cubs at Wrigley 3-2‚ Chicago's 12th loss in a row‚ to spoil Charlie Grimm's return as Cubs manager. The Pirates scored twice in the ninth to tie it off Hank Wyse and won it in the 11th frame for Xavier Rescigno, who relieved Preacher Roe. Pittsburgh also took the opener 6-5, and that one took 14 frames after the Cubs put up a pair to tie the game in the ninth. 
  • 1958 - Bob Skinner‚ Ted Kluszewski (who hit another in the seventh) and Frank Thomas hit HRs in the fifth inning (Thomas had a pair during the game) against the Giants at Seals Stadium‚ but it wasn’t enough firepower as SF won 8-6. 
  • 1970 - OF/1B Mark Smith was born in Pasadena, California. He only played for the Bucs for two seasons (1997-98) with a .249 BA and 11 HR in 366 PA, but delivered one of the franchise’s clutch hits - his pinch hit home run in the bottom of the 10th won the combined no hitter of Francisco Cordova and Ricardo Rincon of July 12th, 1997 at TRS against Houston. 
Mark Smith (photo: Allsport)
  • 1973 - For the first time in baseball history, one team scored its five runs on five solo homers in a 5-4 win over LA at Dodger Stadium. The long balls were launched by Willie Stargell, Dave Cash, Richie Hebner, Manny Sanguillen and Al Oliver. 
  • 1977: In a start-to-finish slugfest, the Pirates beat the Reds, 12-10 at TRS to improve their record to 16-7. Trailing 4-0 after a half-inning of play, Willie Stargell hit his first of two home runs in the bottom of the first, a three-run shot, and the game was afoot. Dave Parker extended his hitting streak to 18 games and Al Oliver went 2-for-4 with a home run. The two clubs combined for 26 hits of which 14 went for extra-bases, half of them homers. Terry Forster got the win, with help from Grant Jackson and a save by Kent Tekulve.

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