Saturday, June 4, 2016

6/4: Kiner Trade, Cutch Debut, Suhr's Streak, FF Under the Lights, Bell Cycle & More...

  • 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.
Bob Klinger 1939 Play Ball
  • 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.
  • 1940 - The Pirates played their first home game under the lights 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 on FF’s opening night. 
Maurice Van Robays 1940 (photo Retro Images/Getty)
  • 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.
Ralph Kiner 1953 Topps
  • 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.
Roberto Clemente 1966 Topps
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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 in that contest was a second inning homer by David Justice to give the Bravos a 1-0 victory.

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