Mike Kreevich tied the MLB record, with four doubles in four straight at-bats, in a 9-1 win at Detroit. The center fielder’s 4-for-6 day, with three runs and an RBI, moved his batting average up to .318. Three of his four doubles came off Tigers starting pitcher Tommy Bridges.
In his second season as a regular, the 29-year-old put up 3.9 rWAR, what would hold up as his career best. Interestingly, Kreevich would tally “just” 29 doubles in 1937 — making this day’s output about 14% of his season total — but led the AL with 16 triples.
Kreevich finished 1937 with a .302/.350/.468 slash and ended up 10th in MVP voting.
A viral infection knocked Nellie Fox out of the lineup for the first time since August 1955, in the first game of a doubleheader at home against Detroit. (Fox was replaced by Billy Goodman.) Fox played in 798 consecutive games, still the White Sox record — and 1,072 out of 1,073.
It was a strange start to a good White Sox career for pitcher Joe Horlen. Horlen entered a game in Minnesota wearing a blank jersey. That’s right … no name or number on the back! As Horlen was warming up, Twins manager and former Sox outfielder Sam Mele came out to talk to the umpire, basically wondering who that kid was on the mound! (Only one other time in the jersey-names era has this ever happened, as Cincinnati’s Eric Davis suffered the same fate on May 19, 1984.)
Joe allowed two hits in four innings of work, and got the 9-5 win in an unusual major league debut!
It was one of the key dates in franchise history, as Roland Hemond was hired as player personnel director to rebuild the franchise.
The club would lose a team record 106 games in 1970. The very next year, after an offseason with Hemond retooling the team, the White Sox improved by 23 games, from 56 to 79 wins, and by 1972 would be a legitimate title contender.
Hemond would eventually become GM and stay with the team initially through 1985. Also coming along as new field manager was Chuck Tanner, who’d be named Manager of the Year in 1972. Both men came to Chicago from the Angels organization, where they had worked together for a number of years.
With a 7-0, complete-game whitewash of Kansas City, Jim Kaat began a 10-game winning streak (stretching into the 1975 season). The future Hall-of-Famer wouldn’t lose again until April 15, 1975 — a loss that came in a rare relief appearance for Kaat; the southpaw didn’t lose a game he started until May 1, winning 12 straight regular outings.
Robin Ventura hit a pair of grand slams in a 14-3 win over Texas. Ventura was the eighth player in history at the time to hit a pair in one game. His eight RBIs tied the franchise record. The home runs came in the fourth and fifth innings, and Ventura also had a double in the contest to give him 10 total bases for the night — tying him for 46th-most total bases in a game in team history.
In a wild slugfest in Minnesota, won by the White Sox, 13-11, first baseman José Abreu drove in seven runs. José had a pair of three-run home runs in the game, along with an RBI single. The home runs came in the first and seventh innings. The seven RBIs are one short of the franchise record for a single game.