MARCH 8, 1946
The first spring training game ever to be played in Arizona takes place at Tucson’s Hi Corbett Field. The Indians, behind the pitching of Bob Lemon, beat the Giants, 3-1, in the inaugural Cactus League contest. (Nationalpastime.com)
FEBRUARY 26, 1957
The Giants trade right-hander Hoyt Wilhelm to the Cardinals for their former all-star first baseman/outfielder Whitey Lockman. The knuckleballer will win only one of five decisions for the Redbirds before being selected off waivers by Cleveland in September, and New York’s newest infielder will spend two seasons with his old club hitting .246 in 225 games over that span.
FEBRUARY 25, 1934
At the age of 60, John McGraw dies at New Rochelle Hospital, two weeks after entering the facility with optimistic reports about his recovery. The renown Giants skipper, known as ‘Little Napolean’ due to his style and stature, won ten pennants and three world championships during his 30 years as the team’s manager.
FEBRUARY 1, 1913
Jim Thorpe signs with the New York baseball Giants. The Olympic hero will compile a life-time .252 batting average during his six seasons in the major leagues, which includes stints with the Reds and Braves.
FEBRUARY 1, 1973
Commissioner Bowie Kuhn announces the Special Committee on the Negro Leagues selection of Monte Irvin to the Hall of Fame. The outfielder spent five full seasons in the major leagues, and was the first black to play for the Giants.
JANUARY 31, 2001
The Wall Street Journal’s Joshua Prager quotes former players Monte Irvin, Sal Yvars and Al Gettel “admitting” the team stole catchers’ signs during the 1951 pennant race when the Giants overcame the Dodgers’ 13 1/2-game lead. According to Prager’s WSJ report, Bobby Thomson, whose three-run, ninth-inning walk-off homer in Game 3 of the National League playoffs won the pennant for New York, did not steal a sign before hitting his historic home run. (Nationalpastime.com)
JANUARY 28, 1949
Monte Irvin becomes the first African-American player, along with hurler Ford Smith, to sign with the Giants. Although the 29-year old outfielder will play only five full seasons in the major leagues, the former Newark Eagles standout will be elected to the Hall of Fame in 1973, primarily for his outstanding play in the Negro Leagues. (Nationalpastime.com)
JANUARY 22, 1913
The Giants agree to share the Polo Grounds with the Highlanders. The American League club, which will become known as the Yankees, had been playing their home games at Hilltop Park, located at 168th Street and Broadway, since 1903, when the franchise shifted from Baltimore to New York. (Nationalpastime.com)