- 1871 - RHP Sam "The Goshen Schoolmaster" Leever was born in Goshen, Ohio. He was a Pirate mainstay on the hill from 1898-1910, compiling a record of 191-100 with a 2.47 ERA, spending his entire career with Pittsburgh. Leever won 20 games or more four times and led the league with seven shutouts in 1903. Sadly for Sam, he went 0-2 in the 1903 World Series, trying to pitch through a shoulder injury, and didn’t appear in the 1909 World Series. Sam got his nickname not only because he did indeed teach for several years before he made it as a ballplayer, but also because of his serious, schoolmarmish disposition.
|Sam Leever 1910 Tip Top Bread|
- 1882 - RHP Sam Frock was born in Baltimore. Sam spent five years in the majors, serving in 1909-10 as a Bucco. He went 2-1, 2.58, before being traded to Boston for Kirby White in April of 1910. He won a dozen games for the Doves that year, then tossed 16 IP in 1911 to mark the end of his MLB road.
- 1889 - 3B Albert “Cozy” Dolan was born in Chicago. Dolan had a seven-year MLB run and spent 35 games of it with the Pirates in 1913, batting .203. His career ended on a dark note. As a Giants' coach in 1924, Dolan was implicated in a botched attempt to throw a game during a close pennant race. Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis issued a lifetime ban from baseball on Dolan and another player. His nickname may have been a hand-me-down from Pat “Cozy” Dolan, a baseball contemporary who played just before our Cozy from 1895-1906.
- 1949 - OF Dave May was born in New Castle, Delaware. He ended his 12-year career by going 0-for-4 in five games as a Bucco in 1978 after the Pirates purchased his contract in mid-September. A journeyman outfielder, May was included in a pair of deals involving a couple of baseball’s big names - in 1974, he was dealt to Atlanta by the Brewers in a swap that allowed Henry Aaron to end his career in Milwaukee, and in 1976 he was part of the mega-deal that brought 1974 MVP Jeff Burroughs from Texas to Atlanta.
|Rick White 1994 Flair Wave of the Future|
- 1968 - RHP Rick White was born in Springfield, Ohio. White, a 15th round draft pick of Pittsburgh in 1990, began his 12-year MLB career as a Buc in 1994-95, and made another Steel City stop in 2005. He went 10-15-8 with a 4.03 ERA as a Pirate, who used him as a swingman. He was converted full-time to the bullpen by Tampa Bay in 1998, and finished his career as a reliever.
- 1977 - RHP Shawn Chacon was born in Anchorage, Alaska. Shawn worked in Pittsburgh toward the end of his eight year career in 2006-07, coming over after a trade with the Yankees for Craig Wilson. Chacon went 7-7-1, 4.44, as a reliever and starter in the Steel City, making 64 appearances. His MLB days ended on a nasty note when he was accused of a smack-down of Astro’s GM Ed Wade and waived in 2008, never to return to the show.
- 1997 - In the first year of the luxury tax, the Pittsburgh Pirates had the lowest payroll of any MLB club at $16.6M. The next lowest club was Detroit at $23.5M. Each payroll had $5.1M in benefits included, so the Pirates paid out $11.5M in straight salary for luxury tax purposes. That rings about right; the Associated Press had the Bucs Opening Day payroll pegged at just $9,071,667.
|John Jaso (Pirates graphic)|
- 2015 - The Bucs signed 1B/OF John Jaso, 32, to a two year, $8M deal after Jaso hit .286 and produced a .380 OBP/.839 OPS in 70 games with the Tampa Bay Rays. JJ was primarily a catcher and DH in the show until the 2015 campaign, when concussion woes necessitated a switch of positions. He was converted to first base by the Pirates to replace Pedro Alvarez after he was non-tendered after the season. John played 1B and corner OF while running hot and cold at the plate, posting a 2016-17 slash of .245/.342/.409 in a platoon/bench role before becoming a FA in 2018.