This Day in History: Turn on the Lights


The first major league baseball night game was played 77 years ago on May 24, 1935. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt sent the signal from Washington D.C. to flip the switch to turn on the lights, symbolizing the beginning of a now familiar baseball experience. This first game under the lights took place at Crosley Field in Cincinnati. The Cincinnati Reds defeated the Philadelphia Phillies 2-1 before 20,422 fans. Night baseball became a quick success. Attendance increased as fans came out to see their favorite players under the lights. In 1935, the Cincinnati Reds averaged 18,000 fans per game at seven night games. This was four times the average of their day games!


May 24, 2012 | E-mail | Comments (0) | Comment RSSRSS comment feed

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On This Date In History: Bring On the Night

On May 24, 1935, the Cincinnati Reds and the Philadelphia Phillies played the first Major League night baseball game at Cincinnati's Crosley Field.  While night games were already being played in the Negro Leagues, Major League Baseball took a little longer to come around to the idea. 

"No pun intended, but there was electricity in the air - on the field, in the stands and in the dugout.  Ballplayers did not get blase.  They got fired up too."  Billy Sullivan, Cincinnati Reds, 1B

From his desk at the White House President Roosevelt flipped a switch signaling to the Reds staff at Crosley Field that it was time to begin.

Here's how a reporter for the Cincinnati Enquirer saw the game:

"The field showed up in a more uniform light, green and tan, than it does in daytime...what clouds there were were so thin that the ball, when it flew high, shone through them like a bald head in a steam room.   And when there was no mist, the sphere stood out against the sky like a pearl against dark velvet."  James T. Golden

A crowd of 20,422 showed up for the historic game.  In the bottom of the first Reds shortstop Billy Myers slid into home scoring the first run. The Reds beat the Phillies 2 - 1, behind a complete game for Reds pitcher Paul Derringer.

The Reds went on play seven night games in 1935, one against every National League team.   

May 24, 2011 | E-mail | Comments (0) | Comment RSSRSS comment feed

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Reds, Did You Say Reds?


February 15, 2011 | E-mail | Comments (0) | Comment RSSRSS comment feed

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Hall of Famers

With last week’s announcement of the 2011 National Baseball Hall of Fame induction class, we thought it prudent to honor the anniversary of two of Major League Baseball’s greatest alumni. Today marks the anniversary of Hammerin’ Hank Aaron’s and Frank Robinson’s National Baseball Hall of Fame induction. On January 13th, 1982, Aaron and Robinson became the 12th and 13th members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame. It was both players’ first year of eligibility. Aaron was only 9 votes shy of being the first unanimous selection in National Baseball Hall of Fame history.


Aaron was a 25 time All-Star, and the only season Aaron wasn’t an All-Star in his career was his final year in the Majors with the Milwaukee Brewers. He was a career .305 hitter and finished his career with 755 home runs, 3,771 hits and 2,297 runs batted in (a Major League record). He holds the record for most consecutive seasons of having 150 or more hits with seven. He won the National League MVP and the World Series Championship in 1957. His # 44 jersey has been retired by both the Atlanta Braves and the Milwaukee Brewers.


Frank Robinson was a 14 time All-Star. He was a career .294 hitter and finished his career with 586 home runs, 2,943 hits and 1,812 runs batted in. Robinson is only 1 of 14 players to win the Batting Triple Crown (when a player leads the league in batting average, home runs and runs batted in). He won two World Series Championships with the Baltimore Orioles in 1966 (he won the AL MVP and the World Series MVP that same season) and in 1970. His # 20 jersey is retired by both the Cincinnati Reds and Baltimore Orioles. Robinson also became the first full-time African American Manager in Major League Baseball history in 1975 when he took over as manager for the Cleveland Indians.






January 13, 2011 | E-mail | Comments (0) | Comment RSSRSS comment feed

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On This Day in History....


On May 11, 1985, Dave Concepcion became the 4th Cincinnati Red teammate to get 2,000 hits. Other players include Pete Rose, Tony Perez and Cesar Cedeno.

David Ismael Concepcion Benitez, better known as Dave Concepcion, was born on June 17, 1948 in Ocumare de la Costa, Aragua State, Venezuela. He was signed by the Cincinnati Reds as an amateur free agent in 1967. Concepcion made his debut on April 6, 1970, later to become one of Cincinnati baseball’s more popular shortstops. He perfected the one-bounce throw to first base on the astroturf. Originally drafted as a pitcher, he was famous for a great throwing arm. 

In 1974, Concepcion enjoyed his best overall season, batting .281, with 14 HR, 82 RBI, as well as winning his first Gold Glove Award. By 1975, Concepcion joined Pete Rose, Johnny Bench, Joe Morgan, Tony Perez, Ken Griffey, George Foster and Cesar Geronimo in the famous “Great Eight” staring lineup of The Big Red Machine that would lead the Reds to win the next two World Series titles.

Concepcion played for the Reds from 1970-1988, with his final game being on September 15, 1988. On August 25, 2007, the Cincinnati Reds retired jersey number 13 in honor of Concepcion’s contributions to the team.

“They way he helped us, the way he played the game, on offense and defense. He played shortstop for us and he could run very well. He helped us in lots of ways. I [saw] a lot of shortstops in my career, and Davey was one of the best. He ranks right up there with the best.” -  Tony Perez.

May 11, 2010 | E-mail | Comments (0) | Comment RSSRSS comment feed

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