04 Aug

take a little trip

If you want to take a trip sometime without leaving your chair, click into Baseball Reference’s BR Bullpen, chose a date — like, say, Aug. 4 — and peruse the significant events down through the years. The trip never fails to satisfy. Many major league history buffs might recall Aug. 4, 1982, as the day that Joel Youngblood got hits for two different teams in two different cities, having been traded midday from the New York Mets to the Montreal Expos. Three years later, Tom Seaver won his 300th game and Rod Carew notched his 3,000th hit, a remarkable coincidence for the two Hall of Famers.
Of course, there are, as you might suspect, quite a few notable Aug. 4 events with Mississippi connections. To wit:
In 1945, Tom McBride, who had played for the minor league Jackson Senators before making the majors, drove in six runs in one inning for the Boston Red Sox against Washington.
In 1966, former William Carey College star John Stephenson hit a pinch home run — his only homer that year in 143 at-bats — off Juan Marichal as the New York Mets rallied late to beat San Francisco.
In 1996, Negro Leagues star William (Bill) Foster, who grew up in Rodney and played and coached at Alcorn State, was inducted posthumously into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown.
In 1998, Southern Miss product Kevin Young went 4-for-4 with four runs and four RBIs in a game for Pittsburgh, and ex-Jackson Mets star Darryl Strawberry hit his second pinch grand slam, an American League record, for the New York Yankees.
In 2001, former Ole Miss standout David Dellucci, playing for Arizona, had the misfortune to be hit by a batted ball, making the final out in a 4-2 loss to the Mets.
In 2002, Chad Bradford — a Hinds Community College and USM alum — was part of a four-man one-hitter for Oakland — the Moneyball A’s — against Detroit. The Tigers’ lone hit was delivered by Hattiesburg native and Pearl River CC product Wendell Magee.
In 2005, the Baltimore Orioles fired former JaxMets standout Lee Mazzilli as their manager and named former JaxMets skipper Sam Perlozzo as his replacement.
In 2011, Meridian CC alum Cliff Lee — who would win 17 games for the NL East champs — tossed his fifth shutout of the year for Philadelphia, beating San Francisco 5-0.
Possibly the most significant Mississippi-related event on Aug. 4 occurred in 1915, when Luke Easter was born in Jonestown, up in the Delta. Easter would become, on Aug. 11, 1949, the first black Mississippi native to play in the major leagues.

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