May 16, 1939: The Philadelphia Athletics played the first American League night game at Shibe Park, losing to the Cleveland Indians, 8-3.
The photo, courtesy of Bob Warrington, was taken by Westinghouse, the company that installed the lights. Officials from Westinghouse, the A’s and A.L. are on the field assessing it if is sufficiently well illuminated to play a major league.
The Phillies were part of the very first night game in the majors, May 24, 1935, playing the Reds in Cincinnati’s Crosley Field. The Reds won, 2-1.
Up until this era, all games were day games.
Like the Phillies, the Reds are under .500 for the season. Cincinnati split a DH against San Diego yesterday and begins a weekend series at Citizens Bank Park starting tonight.
Philly connection on the Reds includes Alfredo Simon, who was originally signed by the Phillies on July 2, 1999, out of the Dominican Republic and spare outfielder Roger Bernardino. 3B Todd Frazier follows Mike Trout as another south Jersey product in the majors. Frazier’s from Toms River, NJ.
Phillies took 2 of 3 here almost exactly a year ago, May 17-18-19. The Reds swept a 3-game series at home a month earlier.
Number of the Day
11: Phillies and Diamondbacks have the most triples in the NL.
Minor League Report
Lehigh Valley won its 5th in a row, 7-1, over Scranton/Wilkes-Barre . . . Barry Enright, 9-inning complete game, 4 hits . . . CF Tyson Gillies, 4th 2-hit game in last 8 . . . LF Steve Susdorf, 3 hits, 3 RBI . . . Back from the DL: C Cameron Rupp and SS Andres Blanco.
Reading was idle.
Clearwater lost its 6th straight, allowing 2 in the top of the 9th, a 6-5 decision to Jupiter . . . 5 different players had 2 hits . . . 3B Harold Martinez and RF Nick Ferdinand, 2 RBI each . . . No decision: Miguel Gonzalez, 5 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 1 SO, in first rehab outing.
Lakewood was rained out at Hagerstown.
Came across the following story on ESPN.com:
A high school baseball player in Washington State threw 194 pitches over 14 innings Tuesday before being removed in the 15th inning of his team’s eventual 1-0 victory in its district tournament. Rochester High School starting pitcher Dylan Fosnacht struck out 17 and was pulled in the top of the 15th after the first two batters reached base. Dustin Wilson, who had been playing catcher, finished the 17-inning win over La Center High School and then pitched all seven innings of Rochester’s second game that day, a 5-3 victory over Elma High School.
In Cole’s last start in New York, he threw a career high 133 pitches, well short of Fosnacht’s abnormal number.
Hall of Famer Robin Roberts believed in throwing and throwing and throwing. Pitch count didn’t exist in his time. He took the ball every fourth day and in between, he’d pitch batting practice.
Robbie once pitched all 17 innings, giving up 18 hits, 6 runs while walking 3 and striking out 5. The following is an excerpt from my book, If These Walls Could Talk: “We won the game when Del Ennis hit a home run into the upper deck off Bob Chipman,” he remembered. “We didn’t count pitches back then so I don’t know how many I threw. I do know I pitched better in the second game (last eight innings) than I did in the first game,” he chuckled. “I always took a hot shower and ran hot water on my arm. I was told one time that it would increase circulation. I did the same thing my whole career. It’s hard to say that was right and the ice they use today is wrong.”
Something else that didn’t exist in Robbie’s day was Tommy John surgery for pitchers. This year, the number is something like 20 that have or are having the surgery. Throwing and running and more running were part of the pitchers’ routine 50 some years ago. Today, its nutrition and weight room and a lot more elbow injuries.
Asked Johnny Podres once, “What was different in your day when there weren’t as many arm injuries?” He took a long drag on a cigarette and responded, “We drank more beer.”