- 1908 - RHP Bob Klinger was born in Allenton, Missouri. He was a multi-roled pitcher who could start or close, and went 62-58-9 with a 3.74 ERA in Pittsburgh from 1938-43. Klinger was in the service for two years before closing out his career with the Red Sox between 1946-47.
- 1925 - Kiki Cuyler hit for the cycle plus a walk, driving in three runs and scoring four as the Bucs rolled over the Philadelphia Phillies 16-3 at Forbes Field. Every Pirate starter, including pitcher Lee Meadows, had a hit & scored and/or drove home a run.
- 1930 - Charlie Engel, Fred Brickell and George Grantham batted 1-2-3 for the Bucs, going 8-for-13 with a homer, two doubles, a walk, three RBI and 10 runs scored to propel Pittsburgh to a 12-6 win over the Brooklyn Robins at Ebbets Field. Larry French went the distance for the victory.
- 1937 - First baseman Gus Suhr set the Pirates and then-NL record by playing in his 822nd consecutive game, going 1-for-4 in a loss to Boston at Braves Field. The streak ended when Suhr attended his mother’s funeral the next day, flying to San Francisco for the services.
|Gus Suhr (photo via The Sports Encyclopedia)|
- 1940 - The Pirates played their first home night game at Forbes Field, beating the Boston Bees 14-2 behind Joe Bowman’s five-hitter in front of 20,310 fans. Maurice Van Robays and Frankie Gustine combined for seven RBI.
- 1943 - Up by a run in the eighth, the Bucs’ Vince DiMaggio singled and New York P Bill Sayles’ next pitch got past C Ernie Lombardi. The Giant receiver was slow chasing the ball, Sayles didn’t cover home, and DiMag kept running to score from first on the passed ball. It ended up the winning run as the Pirates held on for a 9-8 victory at Forbes Field.
- 1951 - Gus Bell hit for the cycle to lead the Pirates to a 12-4 victory over the Phillies at Shibe Park. Bell, Rocky Nelson and Wally Westlake had three RBI apiece; Nelson and Westlake also collected three hits each. Rookie Bob Friend got the win, his first in the majors, going 6-⅓ IP with help from Murry Dickson, who closed out the game after that.
- 1953 - General Manager Branch Rickey traded future Hall of Famer Ralph Kiner, the only man to lead the league in home runs for seven consecutive seasons, as a the salary dump centerpiece of a huge deal with the Cubs. (After several acrimonious contract battles, Rickey reportedly told the slugger "We finished last with you, we can finish last without you.") At least he didn’t have to travel far. The Cubs were at Forbes Field, and the trade was announced after batting practice. The players involved from Pittsburgh were Kiner, C Joe Garagiola, P Howie Pollet, and OF Catfish Metkovich, who were sent to the Cubs for C Toby Atwell, P Bob Schultz, 1B Preston Ward, 3B George Freese, OF Bob Addis, OF Gene Hermanski, and $150,000.
|"We can finish last without you..." (photo: Getty Images)|
- 1953 - RHP Larry Demery was born in Bakersfield, California, the son of Negro League outfielder/pitcher Artist Demery. He broke into the Pirate rotation a few days after turning 21 in June of 1974. Demery was mostly a long man, going 29-23-7/3.72, though he did start 46 times. An arm injury in 1977 ended his career after a four year run with the Bucs.
- 1957 - C Tony Pena was born in Monte Christi, in the Dominican Republic. Signed in 1975 as an international FA, he spent his first seven years (1980-86) in Pittsburgh, hitting .286 and earning spots on four All-Star teams before he was traded in the 1987 preseason to the St. Louis Cards for P Mike Dunne, C Mike LaValliere and OF Andy Van Slyke. The trade caught Pena, a life-long Pirate, by surprise; he teared up at the press conference announcing the deal.
- 1967 - Roberto Clemente hit two home runs and drove in all four runs in a 4-1 Pirate victory at Dodger Stadium. Both blasts were hit off Don Drysdale, the first he surrendered this season. The last four baggers he gave up were against Clemente and Willie Stargell, who went back-to-back on him on September 15th, 1966. Bob Veale threw a five-hitter for the win, saved by ElRoy Face.
- 1968 - The Bucs were on the wrong end of a record or two during a 5-0 loss at LA. Tossing his sixth consecutive shutout‚ Don Drysdale topped Doc White's 64-year-old mark of five shutouts‚ and with 54 scoreless innings, he broke Carl Hubbell's NL string of 49 goose egg frames. In his next game, Drysdale would set the MLB mark at 58-2/3 scoreless frames.
- 1970 - The Pirates selected HS pitcher John Bedard with their first pick (#13) of the draft. While Bedard never made it past A ball, the FO did OK later, picking OF Dave “The Cobra” Parker in the 15th round and C Ed Ott in the 23rd.
- 1971 - The Pirates selected SS Craig Reynolds (#22) first in the draft, followed by RHP Doug Bair (#46) in the second round. It was slim pickings that year; they were the only two selected who saw any big league time.
- 1975 - Yogi’s son Dale, a high school SS, was the Bucs first pick (#20) in the draft. They also signed RHPs Don Robinson and Ernie Camacho, the only other picks to play in the majors.
- 1980 - SS Rich Renteria (#20) was the Bucs first selection in the draft; he ended up with 186 MLB games, mostly with Seattle. OF Joe Orsulak, picked in the sixth round, had a pretty good career as a reserve OF’er, and third-round RHP Tim Burke carved out a nice career in the bullpen with Montreal and later NY.
|Joe Orsulak 1986 Donruss series|
- 1986 - Barry Bonds went 4-for-5 and hit his first MLB home run off Craig McMurtry to lead the Bucs to a 12-3 romp over Atlanta at Fulton County Stadium.
- 1990 - The Bucs picked HS righty Kurt Miller in the first round (#5) of the draft; he went on to win 2 games in his career. Other guys they signed were 1b Kevin Young (seventh round), RHP Brian Shouse (13th round), RHP Rick White (15th round), 1B Mark Johnson (20th round; he was first selected in 1989) and C Keith Osik (24th round).
- 1996 - Clemson RHP Kris Benson was the Bucs top pick and the overall number one selection in the draft, signing for a $2M bonus. They also inked OF Tike Redman (fifth round), IF Willie Harris (28th round) and OF Rob Mackowiak (53rd round). One that got away was LHP Chris Capuano (45th round), who went to college and signed with Arizona in 1999. LHP Mike “Gonzo” Gonzalez (17th round) was also selected, but didn’t sign. The Pirates tried again and got him in the following draft.
- 2002 - The Pirates selected RHP Bryan Bullington with the first overall pick of the player draft, bypassing BJ Upton, Prince Fielder, Zack Greinke, Khalil Greene, Nick Swisher, Matt Cain, Cole Hamels, David Wright and Jeff Francoeur. Bullington received a $4M signing bonus after four months of negotiations. RHP Matt Capps (seventh round) and OF Nyjer Morgan (33rd round) were also members of that draft class.
|Bryan Bullington - 2003 Bowman's Best series|
- 2009 - Andrew McCutchen made his first MLB start against the NY Mets. He singled off Mike Pelfrey in his first at bat and went 2-for-4 with a RBI, three runs scored and a stolen base in an 11-6 win at PNC Park.
- 2012 - The Pirates had pre-draft favorite RHP Mark Appel drop in their laps at the eighth spot because of perceived signability issues. Well, those issues weren’t perceived; they were real as he and agent Scott Boras turned down the Pirates reported bonus offer of $3.8M, the biggest deal they could tender without losing a first-round draft pick the next year. Appel was the only unsigned first rounder of the draft. His pick nullified a reported pre-draft deal with OF David Dahl, who was selected tenth by the Colorado Rockies. The Pirates received a bonus pick for 2013 (which became prep OF’er Austin Meadows the following year), and used their 2012 sandwich pick (#45) to select Texas Tech OF Barrett Barnes, who signed for $1M.
- 2014 - The Pirate pitchers gave up one hit, a first inning bunt single, but still managed to lose to San Diego at Petco Park by a 3-2 count. The Padre runs came on a miscommunicated sac pop fly, an error and a bases loaded walk, one of nine that Pirate hurlers issued. Francisco Liriano took the loss, walking six batters with a HBP in his first four frames (he went six innings). The last time the Pirates threw a one-hitter and lost was July 25th, 1992 at Atlanta. The hit was a second inning homer by David Justice, the only run in a 1-0 Bravo win.