Continuing our new series, here’s a look at notable events in baseball history from the week of April 10.
This Week In Baseball History: April 10th
Another Remarkable Maddux Streak
On April 11th, 1996, Greg Maddux saw one of the most impressive streaks of his career come to a close. 27 years ago this week, the Atlanta Braves right-hander tossed seven innings against the San Diego Padres, allowing two runs off of five hits and a walk, while striking out six. It was a solid performance for the defending NL Cy Young Award winner, yet it earned him a loss in the record column.
Not counting batters who were intentionally walked, Greg Maddux faced 8,025 batters during the 1995-2003 seasons.
Total pitches to those batters called balls? 8,006. 😮
Just totally insane. pic.twitter.com/teovXo83q6
— Codify (@CodifyBaseball) January 21, 2023
It was the first road loss for Maddux since June 27th, 1994 in Montreal. Twenty road starts in a row without a loss. The loss in San Diego ended a streak in which “The Professor” went 18-0 with only 17 runs allowed in 154.2 innings pitched. The name Greg Maddux is synonymous with some of the greatest pitching in baseball history. A ton of his career streaks and stats jump off the page. This is certainly one of them.
Cleveland Reaches An All-Time Low
On April 12th, 1992, Matt Young of the Boston Red Sox pitched eight no-hit innings against the Cleveland Indians, but the Red Sox lost 2-1 in the opening game of a doubleheader. In the second game, Cleveland only managed two hits off of Red Sox flamethrower Roger Clemens. In total, the Indians’ two hits set the record for the fewest amount of hits in a doubleheader in baseball history.
This era of Cleveland baseball was one of the low points in the history of the franchise. The Indians were coming off a 57-105 1991 season, the worst in franchise history. From 1979 to 1995, the Indians failed to have a winning season. The team’s losing woes continued until young stars Manny Ramirez and Jim Thome arrived on the scene in ’95.
April 13th: A Popular Day For Baseball Icons
April 13th is a significant date in baseball history for a few reasons. Multiple legends of the game reached sky-high marks, making their storied careers even more memorable.
First, on April 13th, 1926, the great Walter Johnson pitched in his last Opening Day, a 15-inning shutout. A truly incredible physical performance for a 38-year-old pitcher, Johnson’s feat 97 years ago makes pitching today seem like an entirely different act. Johnson’s total of 110 career shutouts remains one of baseball’s seemingly unreachable records.
On April 13th, 1962, Stan Musial scored his 1,869th run to set a new National League record. In his age-41 season, the Cardinals outfielder would hit .330 with 19 homers, showing no signs of slowing down. “Stan the Man’s” runs-scored mark would eventually be passed by future baseball giants, but he remains one of the great hitters in baseball history and a pillar in the tradition of the St. Louis Cardinals.
Lastly, on April 13th, 1984, Pete Rose joins Ty Cobb as only the second player in baseball history with 4,000 career hits. Cobb had achieved his total of 4,189 hits in baseball’s infancy and ended his career with a .366 batting average, the highest of all time. Rose connected for his 4,000th hit almost 60 years after Cobb, doing so in his age-43 season. Rose would finish his remarkable career passing Cobb for the all-time career hits mark, while also setting records for games played, plate appearances, and at-bats.
Reggie Starts A New Trend
— Vintage Jerseys & Hats (@PolyesterUnis) April 7, 2023
Sports fans today have grown accustomed to their favorite players using facial hair and overall appearance to express themselves on the field. Well in 1972, things could not have been more different. In fact, Jackson was reportedly the first Major Leaguer with facial hair since Wally Schang of the Philadelphia Athletics in 1914. Reggie’s stache, paired with his daily ego-fueled quotes, made him a target of enemy fans and a dream for baseball reporters. “If I was playing in New York, they’d name a candy bar after me” he once said with the A’s. He would, in fact, later play in New York. And yes, a candy bar was named after him too.
Photo Credit: RVR Photos-USA TODAY Sports