Baseball Bookshelf almanac, Feb. 4

February 4, 2013

On this date:

1893 – The first recorded version of Casey at the Bat, as recited by Russell Hunting, hits the music charts. DeWolf Hopper’s more famous version will not be released until October 1906.

1969 – Attorney Bowie Kuhn is named commissioner, succeeding Spike Eckert. Kuhn receives a one-year contract paying him $100,000. Major league owners turned to Kuhn after failing to agree on either of two other candidates, Mike Burke of the New York Yankees and Chub Feeney of the San Francisco Giants. The early favorite, John McHale, took his name out of the running early, as he had accepted the job of President of the expansion Montreal Expos a short time before Eckert was ousted.

1971 – Kuhn announces former Negro League players will have a separate wing in the Hall of Fame. Due to the controversy the announcement causes, it is decided inclusion in regular Hall of Fame is more fitting and more of an honor for the former black players.

Hardball: The Education of a Baseball Commissioner, by Bowie Kuhn, Crown, 1987

1990 – The St. Petersburg Pelicans get home runs from Lamar Johnson and Steve Kemp and rout the West Palm Beach Tropics, 12 – 4, to win the first – and only – championship of the Senior Professional Baseball Association.

Extra Innings: A Season in the Senior League, by David Whitford, Harper Collins, 1991.

The Forever Boys, by Peter Golenbock, Carol, 1991.


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