Welcome to the relaunched This Day in Yankees History. Even with the start of the 2020 season, the Pinstripe Alley team has decided to continue the revived program in its new format. These daily posts will highlight two or three key moments in Yankees history on a given date, as well as recognize players born on the day. Hope you enjoy this trip down memory lane with us!
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This Day in Yankees History (August 4)
37 Years Ago
Yankee outfielder Dave Winfield is arrested for animal cruelty after killing a seagull while warming up before the fifth inning during a game in Toronto. Winfield is released on a $500 bond, and the Ontario police drop the charges the next day. Manager Billy Martin, in response, quipped, “It’s the first time he’s hit the cutoff man all season.”
35 Years Ago
In a pregame ceremony before a matchup with the Chicago White Sox, the Yankees retire honor Phil Rizzuto, retiring his number and presenting him with a “Holy Cow.” The halo-wearing animal proceeded to go off script, famously knocking Rizzuto off his feet.
The Yankees, unfortunately, would go on to lose the game, as Chicago pitcher Tom Seaver earned his 300th win.
13 Years Ago
With a first-inning home run off Royals pitcher Kyle Davies, Alex Rodriguez surpasses Jimmie Foxx as the youngest player to hit 500 home runs (32 years, 8 days). In the process, A-Rod becomes the first Yankee since Mickey Mantle to hit the milestone home run in the Bronx.
10 Years Ago
On the third anniversary of his 500th home run, Alex Rodriguez surpasses Babe Ruth as the youngest player to hit 600 career home runs (35 years, 8 days). Just the seventh player to reach the milestone, A-Rod deposits a first-inning two-run shot into Monument Park.
3 Years Ago
Jaime Garcia makes his first start as a member of the New York Yankees, after having been acquired from the Minnesota Twins on July 30, who acquired him from the Atlanta Braves on July 24. In doing so, he becomes the first player to start make three consecutive starts for three different clubs since Gus Weyhing in 1895 (Phillies, Pirates, and Louisville Colonels). Additionally, Garcia becomes the only pitcher in baseball history to start for three different teams in 15 days or less; the previous record had been 23 days, held by Ron Darling and Ed Daily.
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Happy 58th birthday to former Yankees ace Roger Clemens. Having signed with the Yankees following the 1998 season, Clemens played six seasons in pinstripes, posting a 83-42 record with a 4.01 ERA (3.80 FIP) and winning two World Series championships and the 2001 AL Cy Young Award.
Today is also the 28th birthday of suspended pitcher Domingo German.
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We thank Baseball-Reference, Nationalpastime.com, and FanGraphs for providing background information for these posts.