This Date in Baseball-Roger Maris hits his 61st home run
1903 — The Pittsburgh Pirates defeated the Boston Red Sox 7-3 in the first World Series game. Jimmy Sebring hit the first series home run. Deacon Phillippe was the winning pitcher and Cy Young the loser.
1932 — Babe Ruth, as legend has it, called his home run against Chicago’s Charlie Root in the fifth inning of Game 3 of the World Series, won by the New York Yankees 7-5 at Wrigley Field. Ruth and Lou Gehrig each hit two homers for the Yankees.
1946 — For the first time in major league history, a playoff series to determine a league’s championship was played between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Brooklyn Dodgers. The Cardinals won the first game 4-2, with Howie Pollet holding the Dodgers to two hits — a homer and RBI single by Howie Schultz.
1950 — The Philadelphia Phillies clinched the NL pennant with a 4-1 10-inning victory over the Brooklyn Dodgers on the season’s last day. Dick Sisler’s three-run homer off Don Newcombe in the top of the 10th inning came after outfielder Richie Ashburn saved the game in the ninth.
1961 — Roger Maris hit his 61st home run against Tracy Stallard of the Boston Red Sox at Yankee Stadium. The homer eclipsed Babe Ruth’s 34-year-old single-season home run record. The Yankees won 1-0.
1967 — The Boston Red Sox won the American League pennant with a 5-3 win over the Twins on the final day of the season. Boston’s Carl Yastrzemski went 4-for-4 and finished with 44 home runs, 121 RBIs and a .326 average to win the Triple Crown.
1973 — The New York Mets beat the Chicago Cubs 6-1 to win the National League East. It was the first game of a scheduled make-up doubleheader at Wrigley Field, a day after the regular season ended. The Mets, 11 1/2 games behind and in last place on Aug. 5, won their 82nd game, the lowest number of victories to win a title.
1978 — The Cleveland Indians beat the New York Yankees 9-2 on the last day of the season to force a one-game playoff between the Yankees and the Boston Red Sox. The Red Sox won their eighth straight game with a 5-0 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays.
1988 — Tony Gwynn went 2-for-3 to raise his league-leading batting average to .313 but hurt his hand in a 6-3 victory over the Houston Astros. Gwynn is the first NL batting champion to win the title with an average below .320. The previous low was Larry Doyle’s .320 in 1915.
2000 — Detroit’s Shane Halter became the fourth major leaguer to play all nine positions in a game. He capped his adventure by scoring the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning to lift the Tigers over Minnesota 12-11.
2004 — Ichiro Suzuki set the major league record for hits in a season. He broke George Sisler’s 84-year-old mark with two early singles, and the Seattle Mariners beat the Texas Rangers 8-3. Sisler set the hits record of 257 in 1920 with the St. Louis Browns over a 154-game schedule. Suzuki broke it in the Mariners’ 160th game.
2007 — Matt Holliday and the Colorado Rockies scored on Jamey Carroll’s shallow fly, capping a three-run rally in the 13th inning against Trevor Hoffman. He led the Rockies past the San Diego Padres 9-8 in a tiebreaker for the NL wild card.
2018 — Lorenzo Cain hit a tiebreaking RBI single in the eighth inning, Christian Yelich had three more hits, sending the Milwaukee Brewers to their first NL Central title since 2011 by downing the Chicago Cubs 3-1 in a tiebreaker game. Yelich won the NL batting title with a .326 average. He fell one home run and one RBI short of what would’ve been the NL’s first Triple Crown since Joe Medwick in 1937.
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