This Week in Wrigley History (June 25–July 1)
June 29, 1969
The Cubs celebrated “Billy Williams Day” at Wrigley Field. They were playing a double-header against the Cardinals, and the surging Cubs didn’t disappoint, winning both games. Fergie Jenkins won the opener 3-1, and Dick Selma followed suit in the second game, winning 12-1. As for the star of the day? When he took the field for the second game of that double header, Billy broke Stan Musial’s NL consecutive game streak by playing in his 896th consecutive game. The Cubs gave Billy a new car, a fishing boat, a trailer, a washer/dryer, a watch, a pool table, and a puppy. Williams returned the favor by going 4 for 5 (including a double and a triple), scoring three runs, and knocking in three more. At the end of the day the Cubs were a full eight games in front of the second place New York Mets.
June 25: In 1918 the Cubs crush the Cardinals at Wrigley Field (then still known as Weeghman Park). Max Flack hits a grand slam in the 14-0 shellacking. Lefty Tyler wins his ninth game of the season, giving up only two hits over six innings.
June 26: In 1920 a high-school game between New York City’s Commerce High and Chicago’s Lane Tech is played at Wrigley Field. New York player Lou Gehrig hits a grand slam to lead his team to a victory…In 1966, the Cubs and Mets engage in a beanball war. Mets pitcher Jack Fisher hits Adolfo Phillips. Cubs pitcher Curt Simmons evens the score by hitting Mets second baseman Ron Hunt. But then Fisher takes it one step too far. He hits Ron Santo in the face and fractures his cheekbone. After that the managers go at it, and the umpires have to physically restrain them…In 1969, Ron Santo has another milestone on this day. He clicks his heels for the first time after Jim Hickman’s game winning hit…In 1999, Sammy hits his 300th career homer, in a loss against Philadelphia.
June 27: In 1930, Kiki Cuyler hits a walk-off homer in the bottom of the tenth for the Cubs to defeat the Brooklyn Robins. Guy Bush pitches all ten innings for the Cubs…In 2016, Kris Bryant becomes first player in MLB history to hit three home runs and two doubles in one game. His 16 total bases sets a franchise record.
June 28: In 1950, Cubs shortstop Roy Smalley hits for the cycle against the St. Louis Cardinals. He homers in the second inning, doubles in the fourth, singles in the seventh, and then triples in the eighth. The Cubs win 15-3.
June 29: Cubs sweep two from Cardinals on “Billy Williams Day” at Wrigley Field, as Chicago outfielder sets NL record for most consecutive games played.
June 30: There are two one-hitters pitched on this day. In 1920, Hippo Vaughn gives up only one hit, a single to Possum Whitted as the Cubs win a 1-0 squeaker. In 1964, Larry Jackson matches the feat. No Reds get on base until the seventh inning, when Pete Rose slaps a single up the middle. No one else gets on base. The Cubs win the game 1-0, thanks to a RBI double from Jimmy Stewart.
July 1: In 1926, Hack Wilson hits a homer in the bottom of the 11th inning against the Reds at Cubs Park. Charlie Root gets the win in relief…In 1958, Tony Taylor hits an inside the park homer that gets stuck in the gutter. The rule is later changed to make all such plays ground rule doubles.
June 30, 1959
One of the most unusual plays in baseball history occurred at Wrigley Field on this day. Somehow, there were two balls in play at one time. It all started when a missed strike three got away from Cubs catcher Sammy Taylor. Taylor, thinking it was a foul ball, didn’t go after the ball. The bat boy, also thinking it was a foul ball, picked it up and tossed it to field announcer Pat Pieper. Pieper saw that the batter was running to first base, so he realized it was a live ball, and let it drop at his feet. Third baseman Alvin Dark ran over to grab it. Meanwhile, the umpire gave Sammy Taylor a new ball out of habit.
In the confusion, the runner on first base, Stan Musial, made a run for second base. Cubs pitcher Bob Anderson took the ball out of Sammy Taylor’s catcher’s mitt and fired it to second base at the same time that third baseman Alvin Dark threw his ball to second base. Ernie Banks was covering second and caught one of the balls heading his way, while the other ball escaped into centerfield. Ernie tagged out Musial with one ball, while center fielder Bobby Thomson lobbed the other ball into the dugout. Thinking that “real” ball has been tossed into the dugout, Musial kept on running and scored.
The umpires had a very long discussion about this play on the field before finally ruling that Musial was out because Ernie tagged him. The Cardinals were enraged by the call on the field and lodged an official protest. The protest wasn’t necessary. The Cardinals won the game anyway, 4-1.