In 1901, the only baseball organization that had sustained success in the United States was the National League. Founded in 1876, one of its charter franchises was the Boston Red Stockings from the National Association of Professional Base Ball Players, or simply the National Association, which had won four of the league’s five championships. Other leagues, including the American Association and the Player’s League, had attempted to mirror the success but failed to break the monopoly held by the NL. Then Ban Johnson, the owner of a small but successful minor league system from the Midwest, decided to directly compete with the National League and turned his circuit into a major league unit. Originally, one of the eight charter franchises was supposed to be in Buffalo, where the minor league Bisons were already established, but league ownership at the last minute voted in favor of Boston over Buffalo in part to directly compete with its NL counterparts. The rest… is history.
Red Sox Legend - Bill Lee
Years with Boston: 1969-1978
Fun Fact: Considered an arm pitcher, his bag of slow deliberate pitches included a bloop curve referred to by Sports Illustrated as his Leephus pitch, in reference to the Eephus pitch made famous by former Pittsburgh Pirates staffer Rip Sewell. ...more on Bill Lee.
This Week in Red Sox History
2 May 2014 - Second baseman Dustin Pedroia hits his 100th career home run, a grand slam off of Athletics pitcher Ryan Cook, as Boston wins 7-1 over Oakland at Fenway Park. Pedroia becomes the third Red Sox player behind Mo Vaughn and David Ortiz to reach the milestone with a grand slam and the second player in team history behind Carl Yastrzemski to reach 100 home runs and 100 stolen bases.
2 May 1946 - On the same day Ted Williams hits an extra-inning, game-winning home run at Fenway Park, the Red Sox announce that lights would be added to the park before the 1947 season.
2 May 1995 - Mo Vaughn and John Valentin each hit grand slams at Yankee Stadium to account for the only runs in an 8-0 for Boston over New York.
3 May 1999 - Rookie backstop Creighton Gubanich hits a grand slam in his first at-bat but Boston loses a heartbreaker, 12-11 in 10 innings, as the Red Sox are unable to hold leads of 7-0 and 11-6.
4 May 1939 - Ted Williams launches a pitch over the right field roof at Briggs Stadium in Detroit, the first player ever to do so, in a 7-6 win over the Tigers.
5 May 1904 - The first no-hitter in franchise history is also the first perfect game thrown in the American League as Cy Young retires all 27 Philadelphia batters in a 3-0 win.
5 May 1981 - In a game that takes two days to play due to a curfew rule, Dwight Evans reaches base seven times (four walks, three hits) in an extra-inning win over the Royals in Kansas City, 8-7.
5 May 2010 - Former Red Sox shortstop Nomar Garciaparra, who officially retired as a Red Sox player during spring training, is honored during a pregame ceremony at Fenway Park.
6 May 1911 - The Yankees turn their first ever triple play when Red Sox catcher Bill Carrigan, facing pitcher Russ Ford in the ninth inning, lines into the game-ending triple treat as New York tops Boston, 6-3.
6 May 1915 - The "Babe" hits his first major league home run in a 4-3 loss for Boston to New York at the Polo Grounds.
6 May 1918 - Manager Ed Barrow positions Babe Ruth at first base, the first time the pitcher had been used as a position player in a regular season game. Boston proceeds to lose 10-3 to New York. Four days later, the Babe appears in the outfield for the first time as a right fielder.
6 May 1934 - Boston sets a major league mark with four consecutive triples in a 14-4 win over Detroit at Fenway Park.
6 May 1959 - The Red Sox hit six home runs in Detroit as they pound on the Tigers, 17-6.
6 May 1966 - For the second time in two games, rookie first baseman George Scott hits two home runs, but the Twins edge the Red Sox, 5-4.
6 May 2010 - With an 11-6 win over the Angels at Fenway Park, the Red Sox sweep a four-game series against the Los Angeles franchise at home for the first time since 1967.
6 May 2012 - Both the Red Sox and Orioles use position players to pitch in a 17-inning contest at Fenway Park, with Baltimore winning 9-6. Chris Davis, who started the game as the DH, throws two scoreless innings for the win, while Darnell McDonald, who entered as a pinch runner for David Ortiz in the eighth, is saddled with the loss. It is the first game since 1925 in which both teams employ position players as pitchers.
7 May 1903 - The Boston and New York franchises play for the first time ever as Boston wins 6-2 at Huntington Avenue Grounds.
8 May 1901 - Boston makes its home debut at Huntington Avenue grounds and wins, 12-4, in front of 11,000 fans. Buck Freeman, the club's best offensive threat that year, has three hits, including a triple and a home run.
8 May 1926 - The wooden bleachers along third base catch fire and burn to the ground under suspicious circumstances; they would not be replaced until 1934 under Tom Yawkey's management.
8 May 2004 - Shortstop Pokey Reese hits two home runs, including an inside-the-park job, as starter Curt Schilling goes the distance in a 9-1 Boston win over Kansas City at Fenway Park.
8 May 2007 - Josh Beckett wins his seventh game in as many starts, putting him second behind three other Boston pitchers for the most starts to begin a season without a loss or a no-decision.
8 May 2009 - Former Red Sox center fielder Dom DiMaggio passes away at the age of 92 in Marion, Massachusetts.
8 May 2011 - Shortstop Jose Iglesias makes his major league debut in the ninth inning of a 9-5 Red Sox win over the Twins, fielding a ground ball and throwing out the runner to end the game. He is the youngest player to get into a game for the Red Sox since Jeff Suppan in 1996.