TODAY IN BASEBALL courtesy of National Pastime
1960 – In the first game ever played at San Francisco’s Candlestick Park, after Vice President Richard Nixon throws out the ceremonial first pitch, Giants’ starter Sam Jones three-hits the Cardinals, 3-1. During the third inning a protest is made by the umpires concerning the foul poles, which are discovered to be completely located in fair territory.
1993 – Barry Bonds, who signed a six-year, $43 million deal as a free agent, the richest contract in baseball history, delights the crowd of 56,689 at Candlestick Park by homering in his first at-bat in front of the hometown fans. The clean-up hitter’s second-inning drive to deep right field off Mike Hammond proves to be the difference in San Francisco’s 4-3 extra-inning victory over Florida.
2004 – At the Giants’ home opener at SBC Park, the torch is passed both literally and figuratively as Barry Bonds hit his 660th career homer to tie his godfather, Willie Mays for third on the all-time home run list. The 72 year-old Hall of Famer Mays greets his godson at home plate with a torch studded with $18,000 of diamonds forming the numbers 660, 25, which is Barry’s number, and 1, the number to needed move ahead.
And finally…in 2008, the Charleston RiverDogs, a Class-A minor league affiliate of the Yankees, commemorate the first visit of Benedict XVI to the United States with a Pope on a Rope Night promotion. The first 1,000 fans attending the South Atlantic League game against Rome at Joseph P. Riley Jr. Park receive a soap figurine which bears a likeness of the Holy Father.
PLAYERS BORN TODAY
Vic Willis (1876), Addie Joss (1880), Charlie Lau (1933), Paul Lo Duca (1972) and Hisashi Iwakuma(1981).