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The following are the events that happened world-wide throughout the sport of baseball.
- 1887 - The Joint Rules Committee does away with the four-strike rule and with the scoring of walks as hits. Five balls for a walk remains the rule.
- 1891 - The Louisville Colonels club is sold at auction to satisfy a $6,359.40 mortgage. The new ownership is headed by Dr. T. Hunt Stuckey.
- 1894 - Managers Al Buckenberger of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Billy Barnie of the Louisville Colonels and Louisville star second baseman Fred Pfeffer are expelled from the National League for planning with officials of the proposed American Association (previously called the National Association). The two managers are reinstated before the end of the year, but Pfeffer must wait until the end of February 1895 before he is welcomed back into the fold.
- 1908 - Julia Stahl, widow of Chick Stahl, is found dead in the doorway of a Boston tenement house. Stahl, the Boston Red Sox manager, committed suicide last year during spring training.
- 1950 - Major League presidents Ford Frick (AL) and Will Harridge (NL) vote to deposit $950,000 received for World Series TV-radio rights into the player's pension fund.
- 1954 - The Chicago Cubs trade future Hall of Famer Ralph Kiner to the Cleveland Indians for pitcher Sam Jones, minor league outfielder Gale Wade, and $60,000 in cash. Kiner will hit 18 home runs for the Indians in 1955, his final major league season.
- 1960 - National League batting champion Dick Groat is named league Most Valuable Player, outpolling Pirates teammate Don Hoak 276-162.
- The circular New York Mets logo, designed by sports cartoonist Ray Gatto is unveiled. The design, which represents all five boroughs with various symbols, is blue and orange, the team colors of the Dodgers and Giants, the franchises which left the 'Big Apple' and moved to the West Coast leaving New York without a National League representative.
- The Cleveland Indians trades second baseman Johnny Temple to the Baltimore Orioles for first baseman Ray Barker, catcher Harry Chiti and a minor leaguer.
- 1962 Milwaukee Braves general manager John McHale and six six former stockholders of the Chicago White Sox buy the team from from the Perini Corporation for $6,218,480. William Bartholomay, an insurance executive, will be chairman of the board.
- 1966 - Pittsburgh Pirates right fielder Roberto Clemente wins the National League MVP Award, beating out Los Angeles Dodgers pitching ace Sandy Koufax by ten votes. Clemente batted .317 with 29 home runs and 119 RBI during the regular season. Koufax posted a 27-9 record with 317 strikeouts and a 1.73 ERA.
- 1976 - The California Angels acquire free agent Don Baylor. He will become the only Angels player to win the MVP Award in franchise history (1979).
- 1977 - Minnesota Twins first baseman Rod Carew is named American League Most Valuable Player. The future Hall of Famer led the AL in batting average (.388), runs (128), hits (239) and tripless (16).
- 1979 - The Boston Red Sox sign free agent slugger Tony Pérez. The veteran first baseman, a standout for Cincinnati’s “Big Red Machine” teams of the mid-1970s, played for the Montréal Expos in 1979.
- 1988 - José Canseco of the Oakland Athletics becomes the first unanimous winner of the American League MVP Award since Reggie Jackson in 1973. In winning the award, Canseco became the first player in major league history to hit 40 home runs and steal 40 bases in the same season.
- 1989 - The National League champion San Francisco Giants sign free agent outfielder Kevin Bass, who hit .300 for Houston last season.
- 1992 - The Colorado Rockies sign free agent first baseman Andrés Galarraga, who rejoins team manager Don Baylor, his hitting coach with the St. Louis Cardinals. Galarraga is coming off his second injury-plagued year, having missed 44 days of the season after being hit on the wrist by a Wally Whitehurst pitch just in the third game of the season. Galarraga, whose career seemed on the verge of extinction with the Cardinals, will enjoy a renaissance with the Rockies. He will lead the National League with a .370 batting average in 1993 and will lead the league in both home runs (47) and RBI (150) in 1996.
- Roger Clemens of the Toronto Blue Jays becomes the first pitcher to win five Cy Young Awards when he is named the American League's top pitcher. Clemens was the Triple Crown winner, after led the AL pitchers in wins (20), s (271) and ERA (2.65).
- The New York Mets reinstate general manager Steve Phillips, who will continue to undergo counseling. The threatened sexual harassment suit will be settled out of court.
- Boston Red Sox pitcher Pedro Martínez is named the unanimous winner of the American League Cy Young Award. He led the AL pitchers in wins (23), s (313) and ERA (2.07). Martínez also won the award in the National League, just the third pitcher to do so.
- The St. Louis Cardinals obtain pitchers Darryl Kile, Dave Veres and Luther Hackman from the Colorado Rockies in exchange for infielder Brent Butler and pitchers José Jiménez, Manny Aybar and Rick Croushore.
- San Francisco Giants second baseman Jeff Kent, who hit .334 with 33 home runs and 125 RBI, outpoints teammate Barry Bonds to become the National League MVP. Bonds had 49 homers and scored 129 runs. Kent becomes the first second baseman to win the honor in since Ryne Sandberg of the Chicago Cubs won the award in 1984.
- The Boston Red Sox obtain IF Chris Stynes from the Cincinnati Reds for OF Michael Coleman and IF Donnie Sadler.
- The Cleveland Indians obtain catcher Eddie Taubensee from the Cincinnati Reds for pitcher Jim Brower and a minor leaguer.
- The Chicago Cubs sign free agent pitcher Julián Tavárez to a two-year contract.
- The Toronto Blue Jays announce that they will open the 2001 season against the Texas Rangers in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
- 2001 - A Minnesota judge issues a temporary injunction that orders the Twins to play their full home schedule and prevents owner Carl Pohlad from selling the team to anyone who will move it. While this ruling will be appealed, it will be difficult to get the injunction overturned in enough time to contract the Twins for a potential 2002 season.
- The Atlanta Braves, Florida Marlins and Colorado Rockies complete a three-team trade which sends starting pitcher Mike Hampton and outfielder Juan Pierre to Florida with catcher Charles Johnson, outfielder Preston Wilson, reliever Vic Darensbourg and infielder Pablo Ozuna to Colorado. The Marlins then sent Hampton to the Braves in exchange for pitching prospects Tim Spooneybarger and Ryan Baker.
- The New York Yankees and the Yomiuri Giants sign an agreement to form a working relationship. Being the most successful teams in their respective leagues, the organizations hope to establish scouting and marketing ties which will benefit both teams.
- After piloting the San Francisco Giants for 10 years and winning the 2002 National League pennant, Dusty Baker inks a four-year deal to manage the Chicago Cubs. Chicago, who hasn't been to the World Series since 1945, made it clear the 53-year old three-time NL Manager of the Year was the organization's first choice to the lead the team.
- Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz, who was the runner-up in the American League Most Valuable Player voting this week, was second-to-none in the voting for the top two awards given by the Boston chapter of the BBWAA. Ortiz will be given the Ted Williams Award as the top hitter in the major leagues, along with the Yawkey Award as the Red Sox MVP at the Boston BBWAA's annual dinner on January 12, 2006. Ortiz hit .300 with 47 home runs and a major league-leading 148 RBI this season. He also had 34 RBI that put his team ahead, the most in the AL, and eight RBI from the seventh inning on that gave Boston the lead for good.
- Al Nipper, a former Boston Red Sox draft pick who played the majority of his career with the club, was hired as Boston's bullpen coach.
- Broadcaster Ralph Edwards, who died today in Los Angeles at age 92, was considered the voice that launched the Jimmy Fund, the children's cancer-fighting charity long favored by the Boston Red Sox.
- MLB hopes it can resolve differences with Washington officials over a stadium lease by next week, clearing the way for a sale of the Nationals.
- 1893 - Cristóbal Torriente, Hall of Fame Negro League outfielder (d. 1938)
- 1910 - Morrie Arnovich, All-Star outfielder (d. 1959)
- 1930 - Paul Foytack, pitcher
- 1931 - Frank Bolling, All-Star infielder
- 1932 - Harry Chiti, catcher (d. 2002)
- 1964 - Dwight Gooden, All-Star pitcher
- 1968 - Chris Haney, pitcher
- 1974 - Mark Corey, pitcher
- 1975 - Julio Lugo, infielder
- 1981 - Fernando Cabrera, pitcher
- 1983 - Zach Daeges, outfielder