On October 17, 1960, the National League formally awarded franchises to the New York Metropolitan Baseball Club, Inc., led by Joan Payson, and a Houston group led by Judge Roy Hofheinz. An expansion draft was held for the two new expansion clubs in 1961, and the New York Mets and the Houston Colt .45s would begin play in 1962.
The 1925 season ended on October 4th of that year, and for the first time in franchise history, the Chicago Cubs finished in eighth and last place in the National League. Managed by Bill Killefer, Rabbit Maranville, and George Gibson, the team compiled a 68-86 record to finish 27.5 games behind the first-place Pirates.
On May 27, 1923, Phillies outfielder Cy Williams hit a two-run home run to become the first major leaguer to hit 15 homers in a single month. Williams would lead the National League with 41 home runs that season.
On April 22, 1962, the Pittsburgh Pirates defeated the New York Mets to bring their record to 10-0 to start the season. This hot start matched a Major League record at the time for an undefeated record to open the year. For the Mets, meanwhile, the loss meant they fell to 0-9, matching a National League record at the opposite end of the spectrum.
The publication date for this piece is unknown, but if I had to guess, I’d say it was written in the mid-to-late-1870s, around the time of the fall of the National Association and the beginnings of the National League. The poem is full of imagery and metaphor, speaking of “the collected debris of memories” and “New fortresses / Stretch their fledgling arms / And puncture the sky / With abbreviated zeal.” I can just imagine team owners clinking glasses to cheers of “Long live the National League!” as they concluded their meeting at the Grand Central Hotel.
The collected debris of memories
An anguished ring through the corridors of Manhattan Canyons:
Where are we going?
Do we step?
December… a month… a day… a time
logged on the fresh pages of history…
the first and only real entry… a league
…a new league… a microscopic legion of
men bearing witness to the birth,
unfurling its colors on an industrial land to detract
from the former failure…
The National Association is dead,
Long live the National League!
From rubble to rubble,
From dust to dust,
Stretch their fledgling arms
And puncture the sky
With abbreviated zeal.
Like so many transients
Awaiting a derailed train,
The others come
And never go.
The American Association is dead
The Union Association is dead
The Players League is dead.
Long live the National League!
If I was going to make one rule change, I would bring the DH in the National League.
After years of discussion around adding two teams to the National League, in order to match the American League, on December 18, 1990, the National League expansion committee eliminated Charlotte, Nashville, Phoenix, and Sacramento from consideration to cut the list down to six finalists. The shortlist of locations included Buffalo, Denver, Miami, Orlando, Tampa-St. Petersburg, and Washington, D.C. The expansion would eventually result in the Colorado Rockies and the Florida Marlins (now the Miami Marlins) being added to the NL.
On October 23, 1951, Associated Press named New York Giants skipper Leo Durocher as the Manager of the Year. Under Durocher’s leadership, the Giants rallied from a 13 1/2-game deficit in mid-August to win the National League pennant. New York’s comeback was capped off against the Dodgers, in a three-game playoff series best remembered for Bobby Thomson’s fabled home run in the bottom of the ninth inning of the deciding game at the Polo Grounds.
In spite of a couple delays in the Division Series games, the winners of each series have been determined, and tonight kicks off the American League and National League Championship Series. Here is the schedule for the ALCS and NLCS, all times Eastern.
Tuesday, Oct. 18
NLCS Game 1, Phillies @ Padres, 8:03 p.m., FS1
Wednesday, Oct. 19
NLCS Game 2, Phillies @ Padres, 4:35 p.m., FOX or FS1
ALCS Game 1, Yankees @ Astros, 7:37 p.m., TBS
Thursday, Oct. 20
ALCS Game 2, Yankees @ Astros, 7:37 p.m., TBS
Friday, Oct. 21
NLCS Game 3, Padres @ Phillies, 7:37 p.m., FS1
Saturday, Oct. 22
ALCS Game 3, Astros @ Yankees, 5:07 p.m., TBS
NLCS Game 4, Padres @ Phillies, 7:45 p.m., FOX
Sunday, Oct. 23
NLCS Game 5, Padres @ Phillies, 2:37 p.m., FS1 (if necessary)
ALCS Game 4, Astros @ Yankees, 7:07 p.m., TBS
Monday, Oct. 24
ALCS Game 5, Astros @ Yankees, 4:07 p.m., TBS (if necessary)
NLCS Game 6, Phillies @ San Diego, 8:03 p.m., FS1 (if necessary)
Tuesday, Oct. 25
ALCS Game 6, Yankees @ Astros, 6:07 p.m., TBS (if necessary)
NLCS Game 7, Phillies @ Padres, 8:03 p.m., FOX or FS1 (if necessary)
Wednesday, Oct. 26
ALCS Game 7, Yankees @ Astros, 7:37 p.m., TBS (if necessary)
On September 24, 1922, Cardinals outfielder Rogers Hornsby hit two home runs off Giant hurlers — one each off brothers Jesse Barnes and Virgil Barnes. The blasts enabled Hornsby to set what was, at the time, the National League record for round-trippers in a season with 42.