TODAY IN BASEBALL courtesy of National Pastime
1970 – At Wrigley Field only 5,264 fans see Ernie Banks hit his 500th career home run, but on hand to witness the historic home run is Frank Secory, one of the umpires of the 1953 contest in which Mr. Cub hit his first round-tripper. The second-inning line drive, hit off Braves’ pitcher Pat Jarvis into the left-field bleachers, bounces back onto the field and is given to the Cub first baseman after the ball is retrieved by Atlanta outfielder Rico Carty.
1998 – Mark Grace is the first player to have his home run ball land in the swimming pool, which is located 415 feet from home plate just behind the right-center field fence of the new Bank One Ballpark. The Cubs’ first baseman, who will become a fan favorite in Arizona after signing as a free agent with the club in 2000, will not accomplish the feat again during his three seasons of playing in the desert.
2004 – In one of the most remarkable at-bats in big league history, Alex Cora fouls off 14 consecutive pitches and then hits the 18th thrown to him by the Cubs’ Matt Clement over the right-field fence for a two-run home run which doubles LA’s lead to 4-0. The Dodger Stadium crowd cheered each foul ball as the total started to be displayed on the scoreboard.
And finally…in 2008, in the nightcap of a twin bill against the Blue Jays, Asdrubal Cabrera completes the 14th unassisted triple play in major league history. The Indians second baseman catches Lyle Overbay’s line drive, then steps on second to force out Kevin Mench, and gets the third out tagging Marco Scutaro, the runner from first base.
PLAYERS BORN TODAY
Yogi Berra (1925), Felipe Alou (1935). Lou Whitaker (1957) and Kevin Bass (1959)