This day in baseball: Ambidextrous Icebox

On May 9, 1888, while pitching against the Kansas City Cowboys, Elton “Icebox” Chamberlain of the Louisville Colonels pitched right-handed for the first seven innings of the game and left-handed for the last two innings.  Louisville won the game by a score of 18–6, and the performance made Chamberlain the third major league pitcher to throw with both his left and right hands during the same game.  The feat would not be repeated in the major leagues until Greg Harris switched arms for the ninth inning of a game in 1995.

The newspaper story covering the game was printed the next day in The Courier-Journal:

elton_chamberlain_pitches_left-and-right courier-journal 1888

The Courier-Journal , May 10, 1888  (Page 6)


This day in baseball: Burkett hits .400 … again

September 26, 1896 marked the season finale for the Cleveland Spiders, which they played against the Louisville Colonels at Eclipse Park.  Cleveland outfielder Jesse Burkett collected three hits as the Spiders won, 4-3.  Burkett thus finished the season with a .410 batting average, making him the first player to hit .400 in consecutive years, having batted .405 the previous season.

Jesse_Burkett 1903

Jesse Burkett in 1903 (Wikipedia)


This day in baseball: Clarke’s debut

Future Hall of Famer Fred Clarke made his major league debut on June 30, 1894.  Clarke went five-for-five for the Louisville Colonels, collecting four singles and a triple.

Fred_Clarke 1903

Fred Clarke in 1903 (Library of Congress)


This day in baseball: Inside-the-park x3

On July 12, 1897, Louisville outfielder Tom McCreery hit three home runs off Philadelphia right-hander Jack Taylor.  The three four-baggers provided the difference in the Colonels’ 10-7 victory over the Phillies at the Baker Bowl. Each of the outfielder’s round-trippers were inside-the-park home runs, which makes me wonder about Philadelphia’s defense.

Tom_McCreery

Tom McCreery (Wikipedia)


This day in baseball

The Chicago Colts (later know as the Cubs) of the National League established the record for most runs scored in a game by one team on June 29, 1897 when they destroyed the Louisville Colonels in a 36-7 rout.  The modern NL record would be set by the Cardinals in 1929 when they beat the Phillies, 28-6, at Philadelphia’s Baker Bowl.

1897-Louisville-Colonels

1897 Lousiville Colonels (SABR)