On May 24, 1902, Cleveland third baseman Bill Bradley became the American League’s first player to hit a home run in each of four consecutive games. This record would not be matched until Babe Ruth accomplished the same in June of 1918.
On October 10, 1904, 41-game winner Jack Chesbro of the Highlanders let loose a wild pitch in the ninth inning of the final game of the season. This snapped a 2-2 tie, allowing Pilgrims right-hander Bill Dinneen to claim victory as the Boston team claimed the AL pennant. Dinneen finished the year having completed every game he started during the season, throwing 337.2 consecutive innings without relief during his streak of 37 consecutive complete games.
Ken Williams of the St. Louis Browns homered in his sixth consecutive game on August 2, 1922, setting what was at the time an American League record. However, the Browns still lost to the Athletics, 8-4, at Sportsman’s Park.
On July 21, 1921, the Yankees and the Indians hit a collective total of 21 doubles, establishing an American League record. Cleveland collected nine of the two-baggers, defeating New York 17-8 at League Park.
Cy Young threw the first perfect game in American League history on May 5, 1904. In the game, Young led the Red Sox to a 3-0 victory over Rube Waddell and the Philadelphia A’s. It also marked the first perfect game in the majors since 1893, when the distance from the mound to the plate was changed from 45 feet to 60 feet, 6 inches.
While the American League is known for its use of the designated hitter, they weren’t the first ones to ever have an interest in utilizing it. The Pacific Coast League once expressed an interest in implementing the allowance of a designated hitter even before the AL started using it. However, the PCL’s proposal to use the DH got rejected on March 31, 1961 by the Professional Baseball Rules Committee. The American League would begin using the DH in 1973.
Orioles infielder Cal Ripken, Jr. was awarded the American League Rookie of the Year on November 24, 1982. Ripken’s consecutive game streak had already begun at this point, sitting at 118 games at this point.