Author Archives: ballparkman1955

Bill Gilbreth, who threw complete games in wins in two of his first three games for Detroit in 1971, dies at age 72 of complications from heart surgery

Bill Gilbreth enjoyed the best memories of his major-league career in a 17-day span beginning with his major-league debut in June of 1971. Gilbreth threw complete games in two of his first three starts, and after four appearances he was … Continue reading

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Frank Bolling, the Tigers’ first Gold Glove Award winner and first to hit a home run on Opening Day in his major-league debut, dies at age 88

If an award existed for most overlooked second baseman in Tigers history, Frank Bolling would be a leading contender. Bolling was Detroit’s starting second baseman every year from 1954-60, except for 1955 when he missed the entire season while he … Continue reading

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Northrup broke of out slump with two grand slams in one game in Cleveland on June 24, 1968

Nobody could have blamed Jim Northrup for not expecting to play for the Tigers on June 24, 1968. But nobody could have expected what happened on that Monday night at Cleveland Stadium on the banks of Lake Erie. Northrup tied … Continue reading

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Hall of Famer Heinie Manush bats third in mythical all-time team of Tigers based on what they did after they left Detroit

                If you read the pitching portion of the all-time post-Detroit team of former Detroit Tigers, you understand the format. Players are chosen only on what they did after they left Detroit, either … Continue reading

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Ones that got away: Carl Hubbell, king of the screwball, anchors pitching staff of all-time “after-Detroit” team

The Detroit Tigers have had their good moments and bad moments in trades and free agency. They have added players like Miguel Cabrera and Max Scherzer, and they have traded away players like Justin Verlander and, well, Max Scherzer. Here … Continue reading

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Charley Kuhn, a soldier from the Vietnam War, went to camp with the Tigers in 1968 after not playing baseball for two years

As spring training unfolded in Lakeland, Florida, in 1968, the hopes were high for the Tigers’ chances to contend for the pennant after falling just short in 1967. There were not many opportunities to make the 25-man roster, and there … Continue reading

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Marc Hall set a Tigers record by pitching 13 innings in relief in 1914, and less than a year later he died from complications of diabetes

It is one of those records that could be broken at some point, but it isn’t likely. Marc Hall pitched a Detroit Tigers franchise record 13 relief innings on July 5, 1914, in the first game of a doubleheader against … Continue reading

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Former Tigers pitcher Elden Auker wrote an entertaining book, but there is no evidence to his claim in the subtitle that he struck out Babe Ruth

Former Detroit Tigers pitcher Elden Auker wrote in his book that the only major-league player he knew of before he played baseball was Babe Ruth. Even the subtitle of the book is, “A Lifetime of Memories From Striking Out The … Continue reading

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It was a sad day when an ailing Lou Gehrig benched himself in Detroit in 1939 to end his streak of playing in 2,130 consecutive games

“How can I get the same feeling of satisfaction out of it? I’m not giving them the same thing, so I’m not getting the same thing. You think they’re hurting me? But I’m hurting them, that’s the difference.” – Lou … Continue reading

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Dale Alexander, who had perhaps the greatest rookie season in Tigers history, had his career cut short by failed new therapy on his leg

Some might say Dale Alexander started his major-league career 44 years too soon. He was the prototype for the designated hitter, which started in the American League in 1973. The strapping Alexander, nicknamed “Moose” or “Ox,” burst onto the major-league … Continue reading

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