Friday, April 21, 2017

4/21 Expo Park-Forbes Field Era: Booming Bats, HBD Stan, Big Days For Rip & Ray, & Chief Wins His First

  • 1913 - The Pirates banged out eight straight hits plus a sacrifice fly to score seven times in the sixth inning to rally past the St. Louis Cards‚ 8-5. Babe Adams went the distance for the win at Robison Field. Honus Wagner & Solly Hofman led the attack with three knocks apiece. The victory moved Pittsburgh into a short-lived spot on top of the standings.
Solly Hofman 1912 (photo from the Boston Herald)
  • 1919 - SS Stan Rojek was born in North Tonawanda, New York. He played for the Pirates from 1948-51, starting the first two seasons and hitting .266 during his Pittsburgh years. The Bucs got him from Brooklyn, where he was a backup infielder behind Pee Wee Reese. He hit .290 his first Bucco season as the starter but after a beaning that sent him to the hospital, his bat was never quite the same and he was traded to the Cardinals in May of 1951. The Pirates gave him a couple of not-so-flattering nicknames, per Edward Veit of SABR. “Initially Rojek’s Pirates teammates called him ‘Reject’ because he had been dumped by the Dodgers. He also was called ‘The Happy Rabbit’ because of his projecting front teeth, his attitude, and his quickness in scurrying around shortstop.”
  • 1921 - Moses “Chief” Yellowhorse won his first MLB game and the first ever by a full-blooded Native American (he was Pawnee) by working 3-1/3 innings in Pittsburgh’s 8-7 win over the Reds at Forbes Field in the season’s home lidlifter. Rabbit Maranville led the attack with three hits, including a triple, two runs scored and three RBI.
  • 1927 - In their home opener at Forbes Field, Pirates ace Ray Kremer did it all. He tossed a complete game four-hitter while blasting a two-run home run off Reds starter Eppa Rixey to lead the Bucs to a 3-2 victory in front of 33,439 fans.
Ray Kremer 1985 Big League Collectibles
  • 1943 - Rip Sewell ruined the Cubs home opener at Wrigley Field as he tossed a three hit, 6-0 shutout. Sewell had their number and won five more contests from them during the campaign. He wasn't the only ace on this date - there were four games played around the league and they all ended in shutouts, a MLB record.
  • 1957 - In the first game of a doubleheader at Ebbets Field, Frank Thomas, Paul Smith, and Dick Groat hit consecutive home runs in the third inning off Brooklyn’s Don Newcombe to lead Pittsburgh to a 6-3 victory. Bob Skinner also went yard while Roberto Clemente collected three hits. Bob Purkey got the win for the Pirates. Don Drysdale evened things up by winning the nightcap 7-4 for the Dodgers, as Don Zimmer homered and drove in three runs.
  • 1964 - The Bucs beat the Cubs 8-5 at Wrigley Field. Every run scored was the result of a homer to set a MLB standard, and nine different players went long, tying another record. Roberto Clemente, Ducky Schofield, Jim Pagliaroni, and Gene Freese (who hit a three run bomb in the ninth to win it) went yard for Pittsburgh while the Cubs added five solo shots

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