In a game at Comiskey Park, White Sox pitcher Hollis “Sloppy” Thurston threw an immaculate inning of relief (striking out the side on only nine pitches) versus the Philadelphia Athletics. Thurston’s Immaculate Inning came in the 12th, mowing down Frank “Beauty” McGowan, Clarence “Chick” Galloway and Sam Hale.
Thurston became just the fifth pitcher in MLB history to throw and immaculate inning — and the first to do so in extra innings!
Still Thurston, who came into the game starting in the 11th, got the loss in the 13-inning game, 3-2.
In response to the Sesquincentennial Celebration in Philadelphia honoring 150 years of American independence charging for tickets for Sunday admission (flouting blue laws for freedom, it seems), the A’s announced they would play and charge admission for a Sunday baseball game, held on this day, against the White Sox.
Today it might seem quaint that sports teams were forbidden to play on Sundays, but this was a controversial move by the Athletics, and one they seemingly regretted, scheduling no other Sunday games in the immediate future and earning scolds and threats from preachers and Philly Mayor Freeland Kendrick alike. Only in 1933 did the Pennsylvania legislature vote to allow Sunday baseball.
The A’s beat the White Sox, 3-2, in front of 12,000 fans on this on-off, “unholy Sunday.”
In Detroit, White Sox pitcher Tommy John was attacked by Dick McAuliffe of the Tigers. McAuliffe, who made the final out in Joe Horlen’s no-hitter in 1967, walked in the third inning but veered away on his way to first base to attack John, who had knocked McAuliffe down with an inside fastball for ball four.
As the benches cleared, McAuliffe and John wrestled on the mound, and McAuliffe’s knee struck John’s shoulder so hard it sent John to the injured list, lost for the year. He was 10-5, with an ERA of 1.98, at the time he was hurt. McAuliffe was suspended for only five games.
White Sox owner Bill Veeck agreed to sell the team to Edward DeBartolo, a multimillionaire who invented the modern-day shopping mall in Ohio. DeBartolo would end up being voted down twice by the other league owners, due to speculation about his possible association with mobsters and his acknowledged horse racing interests. Only after that second rejection was a path opened up for Jerry Reinsdorf and Eddie Einhorn (who had submitted the runner-up bid) to purchase the team.
The White Sox were actually an afterthought for the two eventual new owners: Einhorn was part of a group trying to buy the San Diego Padres, and Reinsdorf was part of a group attempting to own the New York Mets. DeBartolo eventually bought the San Francisco 49ers, let his son run the franchise, and won multiple Super Bowls.
After Ray Durham led off the game with a home run and José Canseco singled in Carlos Lee for another run in the first, the White Sox might have thought it was going to be an easy game at 51-75 Kansas City.
But the Royals struck for seven runs against Danny Wright in the bottom half, knocking him out of the box having retired just two batters.
Over the next four innings, the White Sox chiseled the deficit down to three, at 8-5 — and then struck a killer blow, and eight-run sixth inning. After Royce Clayton gave away the first out by sacrificing runners to second and third, Josh Paul (RBI single), Durham (RBI double) and Lee (two-RBI single) gave the White Sox a 9-8 lead off of Doug Henry that they would not relinquish.
However, the RBI single in Clayton’s second at-bat of the inning, giving the White Sox a 13-8 lead, turned out crucial as Carlos Beltrán hit a grand slam off of Bob Howry in the seventh inning to draw K.C. to within one — but that ended scoring for the game.
Durham and Lee led the White Sox with three hits apiece, with Durham contributing two home runs and a double for 10 total bases in the game.
It seemed like every day during the pandemic-shortened season, something record-setting was happening for the White Sox. On this date against the Cubs at Wrigley Field, José Abreu wrote his name in the record books by homering in three straight at-bats, driving in four runs in a 7-4 win. He became the 15th player in team history to homer three times or more in a single game.
On the night, Abreu went 4-for-4 with three runs scored. Abreu had already homered twice in a Friday night win, and would add a solo shot on Sunday afternoon, giving him six round-trippers in the three-game set — the first time a Sox player had ever done that.
And Abreu’s home run Sunday would come in his first at-bat, giving him four in a row over those two days. He became the 15th player in team history to homer three times or more in a single game. Abreu’s amazing offensive production in the 60-game season would earn him the 2020 AL MVP.