4/19 in Yankee History
2012: Curtis Granderson has the first three-homer game of his career, and the first of this major league season, as the Yankees defeat the Twins 7 – 6. Granderson homers in his first three at-bats, then collects a pair of singles, to help New York overcome a 4-run 1st inning by Minnesota. Phil Hughes is credited with his first win of the year and Marx Teixera also homers for the Bronx Bombers.
2011: Mariano Rivera is charged with a rare blown save, allowing the Blue Jays a 6 – 5 comeback win at the Rogers Centre. After homers by Mark Teixera and Curtis Granderson turn an early 2 – 2 tie into a 5 – 3 Yankees lead, Yunel Escobar leads off the bottom of the 9th with a double off the legendary closer, who already has seven saves this year. A wild pitch on a walk to Jose Bautista and a perfectly-executed dqueeze bunt by John McDonald tie the game at 5 all. In the 10th, Travis Snider doubles home the winning run against Ivan Nova, pressed into the game as the Yankees’ bullpen is depleted; Snider had gone 0 for 5 on the day and had snapped a bat into pieces in frustration after striking out with the bases loaded to end the 6th inning.
2002: Deja vu all over again?… Mariano Rivera makes yet another error on an attempted sacrifice bunt in the 9th, much like the errant throw he had made in the infamous (to Yankee fans) final inning of Game 7 of the 2001 World Series. But this game, a Stadium affair, has a happier ending, and Mo gets the win, as Alfonso Soriano drives home Gerald Williams with the walkoff base hit in the bottom of the ninth in the 6-5 victory over the Blue Jays.
2001: The Yankees defeat the Blue Jays‚ 6-5‚ in 17 innings and almost 6 hours. Six relievers pitch 11 scoreless innings before Chuck Knoblauch walks and Jeter singles him to second. O’Neill’s 4th hit of the game finally ends it. Both teams total 14 pitchers‚ who throw 538 pitches (336 Ks) and strand 35 runners.
1979: Following a 6-3 loss to the Orioles‚ Goose Gossage and Cliff Johnson brawl in the Yankee clubhouse. Gossage sustains a sprained ligament in his left thumb‚ and will be sidelined until July 12th. After the fight‚ Reggie Jackson predicts that Cliff Johnson’s days as a Yankee are numbered. He is proved correct when Johnson is traded to Cleveland on June 15th for Don Hood.
1974: In action against the Orioles at Baltimore’s memorial Stadium, the Yankees lose 5-3 to the orioles. The key blow for the hosts is Al Bumbry’s 5th inning, two-run, inside-the-park homer off loser Steve Kline.
Off the field, the Yankees obtain Walt ‘No Neck’ Williams and pitchers Ed Farmer and Rick Sawyer from the Tigers for catcher Gerry Moses. Moses had come to New York in the Graig Nettles trade.
1973: New Yankee owner George Steinbrenner replaces Mike Burke with Gabe Paul as General Manager.
1964: Scott Kamieniecki is born.
In a relief appearance against the Orioles at Camden Yards in 1996, his final year with the Yankees, he achieved the unusual feat of retiring the side 1-2-3 despite falling behind all three batters with a 3-0 count. Happy birthday, SK!
1962: Mickey Mantle’s homer in the fourth off Chuck Estrada jumpstarts the Yanks to a 3-1 win over the Orioles.
1960: On Patriots’ Day (editor’s note: for the anniversary of the beginning of the American revolution, not the football team) at Fenway Park‚ Roger Maris makes his debut with the Yankees a smash as he goes 4-for-5‚ including 2 home runs‚ and drives in 4 runs. The Yanks spoil Boston’s Opener with an 8-4 win as Jim Coates goes all the way for New York. Tom Brewer is the loser. Red Sox catcher Haywood Sullivan has his first Major League hit after 5 seasons and 16 at bats. Mayor John Collins‚ wheel-chair bound because of polio‚ tosses out the first ball
1954: On Patriots’ Day in Boston‚ the Yankees sweep a doubleheader from the Red Sox. Boston win the morning game‚ 2-1‚ on Willard Nixon’s five-hitter. In the afternoon game‚ the Yankees top Mel Parnell 5-0 behind Jim McDonald‚ as Mickey Mantle belts his first homer of the year.
1953: In the second game of a doubleheader, Alex Kellner of the A’s blanks the Yankees‚ 3-0 on 2 hits. Kellner shut out the Bombers on Opening Day and is the first pitcher to shutout New York on consecutive starts since Schoolboy Rowe in 1934.
1949: At pregame ceremonies marking the season opener with the Senators at the Stadium‚ a granite monument to Babe Ruth‚ who died on August 16‚ 1948‚ is unveiled in center field. Plaques honoring Lou Gehrig and Miller Huggins are also presented. Mrs. Babe Ruth‚ Mayor William O’Dwyer‚ Governor Thomas E. Dewey‚ and the current baseball team from St. Mary’s Industrial School in Baltimore are at the game. Gary Simpson‚ the St. Mary’s captain‚ throws out the first ball.
The Yanks‚ who went just 13-14-1 in spring training‚ tie it at 2-2 in the 7th on Yogi Berra’s 2-out pinch single. New York win 3-2 when Tommy Henrich hits a dramatic 9th inning two-out homer off starter Sid Hudson. Henrich will hit another one out in tomorrow’s 3-0 win. Ed Lopat gives up 8 hits – three by Gil Coan – in going the distance for New York. Gene Woodling‚ the PCL’s leading hitter in 1948 with a .385 average‚ plays center field in place of the injured Joe DiMaggio.
1948: At Griffith Stadium in Washington D.C.‚ President Harry Truman tosses out the first ball.
Fans might have thought Truman had stayed on the mound as the Yankees bat around in the opening inning against Nats starter Early Wynn. The second man up‚ Tommy Henrich‚ belts a two run homer‚ and a few batters later Allie Reynolds hits his first major league homer‚ a three run shot‚ that makes the score 7-0. Wynn gives up 16 hits and all 12 runs before leaving in the 9th for Ramon Garcia. Reynolds wins 12-4‚ allowing 11 hits‚ four by Leon Culberson. The Yanks like what they see in Culberson‚ acquiring the first baseman on May 13th‚ but he will never play another game in the majors.
1946: The Yankees open at home on Good Friday‚ a perceived conflict that is vociferously protested by the New York chapter of the Catholic War Veterans. Because of their objections, Mayor William O’Dwyer (a Dodger fan) passes up the honor of throwing out the first ball. A WW II Medal of Honor winner substitutes‚ and Joe Page and the Yanks beat Washington‚ 7-6.
Today also marks the first public unveiling of the Stadium’s new lights (though the House That Ruth Built will not see its first night game until next month) as well as the switching of the home team’s dugout from the third- to the first-base side, and a corresponding change for the visitors’.
1928: The Yankees are out of first place for the first time since May 1926 when they lose‚ 7-6‚ the morning Patriots’ Day game in Boston. Boston have just one hit in 5 innings off Al Sheeley but the Sox overcome a 6-0 deficit to win. Pat Collins homers for the Sox‚ with Slim Harriss picking up the relief win over Cy Moore. Behind Herb Pennock‚ New York take the nitecap‚ 7-2‚ in a game rained out after 6 innings.
Hooks Wiltse is the losing pitcher, Ken Williams and Babe Ruth exchanging homers.
1919: In the annual Patriots’ Day twinbill in Boston, new Red Sox pitcher Joe Bush debuts with a 2-1 four-hit win over the Yankees’ saliva slinger Allan Russell in the a.m. game. The Red Sox (5-0) complete the sweep in the afternoon with a 9-5 win behind Babe Ruth’s pitching. Ruth further contributes a single and a long sacrifice fly to right that scores Everett Scott from second after the Frank Gilhooley catch. The Yankees help with six errors in the game, three by Del Pratt (below), who offsets them with four hits.