Today’s Cubs Birthdays (May 23)
~Augie Galan 1912–1993 (Cubs 1934-1941)
Augie was the leadoff man on the Cubs team that set the all-time record by winning 21 games in a row in 1935. He was the hottest hitter of all the Cubs during the streak. Augie hit 5 of his 12 home runs that season and batted an astounding .358 to finish the season at .314. There were only two games he didn’t reach base. But after carrying the team on his back to win the pennant, Galan didn’t have a good World Series against the Tigers. He hit only .160. In 1936, Augie was an All-Star. In 1937, he led the league in stolen bases, and in 1938 he was a part of the pennant winners as well. But despite his many heroics in a Cubs uniform, the Cubs traded Augie to the Dodgers in 1941. Galan still had plenty left in the tank. He played another eight seasons of big league ball for the Dodgers, Reds, Giants, and A’s.
~Duke Brett 1900–1974 (Cubs 1924-1925)
Duke pitched two seasons for the Cubs, appearing a grand total of eleven big league games. The Virginia native went 1-1, with a 3.97 ERA. After his playing career ended, Duke was a minor league manager for more than twenty years.
~Algie McBride 1869–1956 (Colts 1896)
Algie (real first name Algeron) was thought to be the answer in left field for Cap Anson’s 1896 Colts, but Cap grew weary of his light hitting, and sent him packing just a few weeks later. Algie later played for Cincinnati and the New York Giants.
~Ramon Ortiz 1973– (Cubs 2011)
Ortiz had a very promising start to his career with the Angels. He won 15 games for them in 2002 and anchored the team’s rotation. But by the time he came to the Cubs in 2011, Ortiz had compiled six straight seasons of ERAs over five. He appeared in 22 games for the Cubs in his one season in Chicago, and registered an ERA of 4.86.
~Ricky Gutierrez 1970– (Cubs 2000-2001)
Gutierrez was known to Cubs fans before he came to Chicago as the guy who got the only hit (a ball that should have been called an error) in Kerry Wood’s 20-strikeout game. Ricky had two very solid seasons at shortstop for the Cubs at the turn of the century. He was a very unselfish player, leading the league in sacrifices both years. Ricky’s big league career ended in style. He was part of the 2004 Boston Red Sox team that broke Boston’s curse, along with former Cubs teammates Bill Mueller and Mark Bellhorn.