Since we just celebrated Brooks Robinson Night on Wednesday, here’s a great video about his baseball collection that he donated to charity in 2015. The collection earned $1.44 million for the Constance & Brooks Robinson Charitable Foundation. The highest earning piece was his 1964 MVP award, which sold for $155,350. Included in the collection was a platter presented to him on Brooks Robinson Night in Arlington, Texas, in 1973. Alas, the puppy and the duck were not available for the auction.
Brooks Robinson in 1963
On September 18, 1977, Ted Cox made his Major League debut with the Boston Red Sox, going 4 for 4 in Baltimore. What’s more interesting is that it was Brooks Robinson Night at Memorial Stadium. A few weeks ago, I wrote about Walter Johnson Day, wondering whether it was a thing to have a day to celebrate a player. Well, apparently it was – at least for the baseball greats.
That night in 1977 was “Thanks, Brooks” Day in Baltimore. Robinson had retired a few weeks earlier to make room on the roster for catcher Rick Dempsey, who we returning from the disabled list. Despite requesting that there be donations to his favorite charities in lieu of gifts, Robinson was presented with: a new car, a Hawaiian vacation, replacement Gold Gloves from the Rawlings company (because he had donated his to charities), and vacuum cleaner from Lee May. In addition, Doug DeCinces, who had taken over at third base that year, walked over the third base, removed the bag, and gave it to Robinson.
Naturally, given Robinson’s importance to the Baltimore Orioles and the entire state of Maryland, 1977 was not the first time Brooks Robinson was celebrated. Exactly 13 years earlier, on September 18, 1964, the Orioles held Brooks Robinson Night. It was his MVP season and the 5th of his 16 Gold Glove seasons. On that night, Robinson was presented with a station wagon, a freezer, a color portrait of himself, a puppy, a duck, and 50 shares of Orioles stock.
I’m sure there were others, official and unofficial. In fact, every day should be Brooks Robinson Day. And everyone should get a puppy – or a duck.
The Bowie Baysox may not have won the Eastern League pennant, but they won our hearts. All of Birdland supported them in their quest, including the one and only Brooks Robinson:
Tom Cheney’s 1957 baseball card
On this date in 1962, the Washington Senators beat the Baltimore Orioles 2-1 in a 16-inning game. Senators pitcher Tom Cheney struck out 21 Orioles, setting an MLB record for strikeouts in a regular season game. These are the Orioles that struck out:
- Jerry Adair
- Russ Snyder (struck out 3 times)
- Brooks Robinson
- Jim Gentile (also struck out 3 times)
- Dave Nicholson (3 strike outs)
- Hobie Landrith
- Jackie Brandt
- Marv Breeding (3 strike outs)
- Dick Williams
- Milt Pappas (2 strike outs)
- Dick Hall (3 strike outs)
The orioles that didn’t strike out? Boog Bowell, Jackie Brandt (1 at bat), Charlie Lau (1 at bat), and relievers Billy Hoeft and Wes Stock. The 1962 Orioles ended up having a 78-84 record, finishing in seventh place in the American League.
If it makes O’s fans feel any better, four years later, the Baltimore Orioles went on to win the World Series. (Ok, that really didn’t make me feel any better.)
Former Oriole (and Baysock) Henry Urrutia posted his stats from the Mexican League earlier this week:
The Os shoulda kept him.
On September 6, 1995, Cal Ripken, Jr., broke the record for the most consecutive baseball games played in by a Major Leaguer. During that game, he hit a home run, as discussed in the video below featuring Jon Miller and President Bill Clinton:
Cal Ripken, Jr., in 1993 (photo courtesy of Wikipedia)
Baseball’s Iron Man, Cal Ripken, Jr., turns 59 today! Despite retiring from baseball nearly 20 years ago, Cal remains an import part of baseball, baseball history, and the State of Maryland. Here are a few of his important stats:
- At bats: 11,551
- Hits: 3,184
- Runs: 1,647
- RBIs: 1,695
- Home runs: 431
- Career batting average: .276
- Consecutive games played: 2,532
- Total games played: 3,001
- Seasons played: 21
- All-Star games: 19
- MVP Awards: 2
- Gold Gloves: 2
- Silver Slugger Awards: 8
- MLB teams played for: 1
Happy birthday, Cal!