Super Bowl….Super Bears. While today’s big game will be at the forefront of sports fans everywhere, the upcoming week is the last full week without baseball in 2007 until sometime in late October or early November. Pitchers and catchers report to big league camps in 10 days and in 24 days Carlos Zambrano should be throwing the first pitch of the exhibition season to the Giants.
Let’s step into the ‘Way Back Machine’…. February 4
- 2005 – The Cubs avoided arbitration and signed Aramis Ramirez to a $8.95 million dollar, 1-year contract
- 1984 – The Cleveland Indians traded Toby Harrah and Rick Brown to the Yankees for George Frazier (198401986), Otis Nixon and Guy Elston
- 1957 – Joe McCarthy (Manager, 1926) was elected to the Hall of Fame
- 1954 – The Orioles traded Johnny Groth and Johnny Lipon to the White Sox for Sam Mele and Neil Berry. Lipton was traded to the Reds on April 18th for Grady Hatton (1960)
- 1934 – Hank Aaron, born
- 1931 – Hack Wilson (1926-1931) signed with the Cubs for $35,000 dollars. In 1930 Wilson set National League and Major League records while with the Cubs in home runs (56-NL record) and RBI’s (191-MLB record). Wilson was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1979
- 1903 – The Cubs and White Stockings, the first to play an inter-league series, announced a 15-game preseason City Series
- 1886 – The patent dispute between Thayer & Wright and A.G. Spalding & Brothers went to court in Chicago. Thayer claimed to have invented the catcher’s mask, while Wright and Spalding are former teammates on the champion Boston Red Stockings. In the eventual settlement, Thayer’s claims will be upheld and he will receive a royalty on masks sold from Spalding’s company. Spalding will buy out many rivals on his way to establishing a monopoly in the sporting goods business.
- 2004 – The Cubs reached a tentative deal with the city that allowed them to begin adding additional night games in 2004. The Cubs had been limited to 18 night games a year and the number would grow by 4 a year, up to 30 in 2006.
- 1935 – Dizzy Dean (1938-1941) declared himself a holdout. He demanded $25,000 for the upcoming season. He signed the next day for $19,500.
- 1895 – George Herman Ã¢â‚¬ËœBabeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ Ruth, born
- 1994 – Michael Jordan signed a Minor League contract with the Chicago White Sox (Granted this is not Cubs related, but it is Jordan)
- 1950 – Burt Hooton, born
- 1985 – Felix Pie, born
- 2005 – The Cubs traded reliever Kyle Farnsworth (1999-2004) and a PTBNL to the Detroit Tigers for Roberto Novoa (2005 – present), Scott Moore (2005 – present) and Bo Flowers
- 1994 – The Phillies traded Terry Mulholland (1997-1999) and a PTBNL to the Yankees for Bobby Munoz, Kevin Jordan and Ryan Karp
- 1988 – Don Baylor (Manager, 2000-2002) signed a 1-year contract with the Oakland A’s
- 1984 – The Dodgers waived Dusty Baker (Manager, 2003-2006). Baker vetoed a trade to the Oakland A’s during the Winter Meetings.
- 1982 – The Reds traded Paul Moskau (1983) to the Orioles for Wayne Krenchicki
- 1956 – The Cubs signed Ben Banks, the 22-year old brother of Ernie. The former Kansas City Monarch would not make it out of the minors.
- 1927 – The Giants traded George Kelly (1930) along with cash to the Reds for Edd Roush
- 1916 – The National League voted down a proposal by the Giants, Braves and Cubs to increase club player limit from 21 to 22. The Reds wanted it decreased to 20.
- 1914 – Hank O’Day (Manager, 1914), a veteran umpire, signed on to manage the Cubs.
- 2006 – Alfonso Soriano lost his arbitration case with the Washington Nationals but set a record for the largest salary ever awarded by the process. Soriano had asked for $12 million and the arbitrator awarded $10 million surpassing the $8.2 million that was awarded to Andruw Jones in 2001.
- 1980 – Cesar Izturis, born
- 1950 – The Reds sold Johnny Vander Meer (1950) to the Cubs for an undisclosed amount.
- 1945 – Jimmie Foxx (1942, 1944) signed with the National League Philadelphia Blue Jays. Foxx hit just .050 in 1944 for the Cubs.
- 1920 – At a joint meeting in Chicago, all bleacher prices were raised to 50 cents, pavilion to 75 cents and grandstand seats to $1.00. The May 15th-August 30th player limits were raised from 21 to 25. The American League prohibited player transfers after July 1st, the National League after August 20th.
- 1916 – The Cubs sent cash to the sinking Chicago Whales (Federal League) and brought back Mordecai Brown (1904-1912, 1916), Clem Clemens (1914, 1916), Mickey Doolan (1916), Bill Fischer (1916), Max Flack (1916-1922), Claude Hendrix (1916-1920), Les Mann (1916-1919), Dykes Potter (1916), Joe Tinker (1902-1912, 1916 – Manager, 1916), Rollie Zeider (1916-1918) and George McConnell (1914, 1916).
Will the Cubs make any History this week?