Monday, October 10, 2016

10/10: HBD Cutch, Ad & Homer; Deacon & Danny Cover Boys, '04 Series; Cuban Trip & '61 Expansion Draft

  • 1867 - RHP Addison “Ad” Gumbert was born on Frankstown Avenue in Pittsburgh’s East End. He won 123 games in nine major league seasons and was a good enough hitter that he played 38 games in the outfield. Ad was a Buc from 1893-94, going 26-21, 5.73, and even played seven games in the pasture with a .263 BA. After he hung up the spikes, Gumbert became a popular local politico and community leader. He was elected sheriff of Allegheny County and later County Commissioner while also serving as chairman of several charitable and civic organizations.
Ad Gumbert - Goodwin
  • 1879 - P/UT Homer Hillebrand was born in Freeport, Illinois. Homer was a Princeton grad that was good at multi-tasking. His MLB career was spent with the Pirates from 1905-06 & 1908, and he pitched in 18 games (11 starts) with an 8-4-1, 2.51 line. He also played 26 games in the field at 1B, OF and C (even tho he was a lefty), hitting .237. His 1908 return was short-lived. Homer sat out the ‘07 year to rest a sore arm and it never recovered, causing him to retire after tossing one frame in 1908.
  • 1904 - In the final year without a formal October Classic (the 1903 World Series was set up by the two pennant-winning clubs, Pittsburgh and Boston, not by the leagues themselves.) Cleveland and Pittsburgh opened a five-game postseason exhibition series of their own at Cleveland’s League Field. It was a natural as a rivalry due to the proximity of the cities, as a bragging-rights NL-AL clash with both teams finishing fourth in their league and with a bit of star power on display featuring the era’s two best hitters, Hans Wagner and Nap Lajoie (in fact, Cleveland was called the Naps in Lajoie’s honor). Alas, the fans didn’t want to see meaningless baseball and stayed away in droves, with the Naps taking the series two games to one with two draws.
  • 1930 - A MLB All-Star team played its first game in Cuba on a ten day barnstorming tour, including Pirates OF Paul Waner, 3B Pie Traynor and P Larry French. The Cubans proved to be worthy opponents then as now, winning four of the seven games played on La Isla.
Larry French (photo Conlon Collection/The Sporting News)
  • 1960 - Vernon Law was featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated during its 1960 WS coverage. He won a pair of games against the Yankees and the Cy Young as he finished the regular season 20-9 with 3.09 ERA.
  • 1961 - The expansion draft claimed six Pirates - the Houston Colt .45s took OF Roman Mejias, P Bobby Schantz, P Jim Umbright and C Hal Smith, while the New York Mets selected OF Joe Christopher and P Al Jackson.
  • 1970 - Danny Murtaugh was featured on the cover of The Sporting News for the story “Bucs’ Secret Weapon.” His ‘70 team made the transition from Forbes Field to TRS and won the NL East, only to be swept by the Reds in the NLCS.
Andrew McCutchen 2009 Topps Chrome
  • 1986 - Andrew McCutchen was born in Fort Meade, Florida. Cutch, a five-time All-Star & MVP first rounder in 2005, has been the face of the team since replacing Nate McLouth during the 2009 season. He’s also won Baseball America’s Rookie of the Year, three Silver Sluggers, a Golden Glove, two Player’s Choice Outstanding Player of the Year and the Roberto Clemente awards.

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