You love baseball. Tim Kurkjian loves baseball. So while we await its return, every day we’ll provide you with a story or two tied to this date in baseball history.
ON THIS DATE IN 1903, Jack Doscher made his debut for the Cubs. He became the first son of a former major leaguer to play in the bigs.
Fathers and sons have played a big part of baseball history. There have been over 200 father-son combinations in the majors. The best combination ever is Bobby and Barry Bonds, who combined for 1,094 homers and 975 stolen bases. But they didn’t do what Cecil and Prince Fielder did: the only father-son combo to hit 50 home runs in a season; they finished their careers with the exact same home run total — 319. And they didn’t do what Gary and Daryle Ward and Craig and Cavan Biggio did: the only father-son combos to hit for the cycle. And they didn’t do what Tim Raines and Tim Jr. did: they played in the same game. And they didn’t do what Ken Griffey Sr. and Ken Griffey Jr. did in 1990 with Seattle: they hit back-to-back homers in a game against the Angels.
There are so many more — the Alous, Felipe and Moises; the Alomars, Sandy, Sandy Jr. and Roberto; the Cruzs, Jose and Jose Jr.; the Berras, Yogi and Dale; the Roses, Pete and Pete Jr.; the Hairstons, Sam, Jerry, Jerry Jr. and Scott; the McRaes, Hal and Brian; the Mathews, Gary Sr. and Gary Jr.; the Bagbys., Jim and Jim Jr.; the Stottlemyres, Mel and Todd; the Borbons, Pedro and Pedro Jr. These are the only father-son combinations to play in the World Series.
Yankees manager Aaron Boone is part of the only three-generation family of All-Stars in major league history: Aaron, his brother Bret, their dad, Bob, and their grandfather, Ray. When Aaron and Brett made the All-Star team in 2003, a picture of the four All-Star Boones was taken on the field in Chicago, a moment that Aaron has called the biggest of his career. “I’ve seen my dad cry twice in my life,” Aaron said. “The first time was when he called me in his office (in 2003 when Bob was the manager of the Reds) to tell me that I’d made the All-Star team. The other time was when I was named the manager of the Yankees.”
Gus Bell was a good major league outfielder. His son, Buddy, got 2,514 hits in the big leagues. Buddy’s sons David and Mike played in the big leagues, and Rickey in the minor leagues. Gus and David are the only grandfather-grandson to hit for the cycle. When Gus would watch Buddy play high school baseball in Cincinnati in the 1970s, Gus would park his car beyond the center-field fence because, like so many big leaguers, he enjoyed watching alone, without distractions, so he could concentrate on the playing of the game.
“If I made a good play,” Buddy said, “he’d honk the horn once. If I made a great play, he’d honk it twice.”
Other baseball notes for July 2
In 1941, Joe DiMaggio hit in his 45th consecutive game, breaking the record set by Wee Willier Keeler in 1897.
In 1972, Giants reliever Randy Moffitt recorded his first major league victory. He received a congratulatory telegram from his sister and tennis legend Billie Jean King.
In 1985, Joe Niekro won his 200th game. The only pitching brother combinations to win 200 games each are the Niekros, Phil and Joe, and the Perrys, Gaylord and Jim.
In 1979, Dave Garcia was named manager of the Indians. As a third base coach, Garcia “gave the fastest signs of any third base coach I’ve ever seen,” said Hall of Famer Paul Molitor. “Whoa!”
In 1964, Jose and Ozzie Canseco were born as identical twins. Jose was a ridiculous talent. Ozzie was good, but he wasn’t his brother. They played on the same A’s team in 1990. We used to joke that Jose should switch jerseys with Ozzie when it was Ozzie’s turn to bat. That way, Jose would get eight at-bats per game.