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TODAY IN BASEBALL HISTORY

1940      Determining the ownership of the White Sox, a federal judge rules in favor of Grace Comiskey, who inherited the team after the death of her husband, John Louis Comiskey, in 1939. The widow needed to go to court because the First National Bank of Chicago, the estate’s trustee, wanted to sell the team because there was no specific instruction in her spouse’s will that she should take control of the franchise.

1944      Deemed too tall for service, Dodger 6-foot 6-inch first baseman Howie Schultz, the player Brooklyn trades to make room for Jackie Robinson, is rejected for military duty for the second time. In 1949, ‘Steeple’ begins professional basketball career, averaging 5.3 points per game during a four-year stint in the NBA, becoming one of few athletes to qualify for a pension from two professional sports.

1972      Hank Aaron becomes the first player paid $200,000 per season when he inks a three-year deal for $600,000. In 1947, Hank Greenberg became the first player to make six figures, signing a $100,000 contract with the Pirates.

2000      The Newark Bears invite Yankee outfielder/DH Darryl Strawberry, suspended yesterday by major league baseball for testing positive for the use of cocaine, to join the team during his one-year banishment. The New Jersey franchise, a member of the South Atlantic Independent League, is located near the slugger’s Fort Lee home.

1940 — American golfer Jimmy Demaret wins his third PGA Tour event within an 8-day span, taking the St. Petersburg Open by 1 stroke from Byron Nelson.

1940 — Detroit’s Cecil “Tiny” Thompson becomes first goaltender in NHL history to play 40 (or more) games for 12 straight seasons; milestone comes in a 3-1 Red Wings loss at Toronto.

1952 — Dick Button leads an unprecedented American sweep when he wins World Men’s Figure Skating Championship in Paris; beats compatriots James Grogan and Hayes Alan Jenkins for his 5th straight world title.

1956 — MLB’s Cleveland Indians franchise is sold for nearly $4m; former player and the team’s general manager Hank Greenberg is part of the new ownership group.

1964 — Cincinnati’s Jerry Lucas and Oscar Robertson combine for a rare 40-40 performance as the Royals beat host Philadelphia 76ers, 117-114; NBA MVP Robertson has 43 points; Rookie of the Year Lucas, 40 rebounds.

1972 — Future Baseball Hall of Fame right fielder Hank Aaron becomes first player to earn $200,000 average annual salary; signs 3-year deal with Atlanta Braves after one of his best seasons – .327 average, 47 HRs and 118 RBIs.

1976 — American driver Richard Petty wins the only Winston Cup race run on Leap Day, taking the Carolina 500 at Rockingham by 2 laps over Darrell Waltrip.

1980 — Future Hockey Hall of Fame right wing Gordie Howe scores in the 3rd period to become first NHL player to score 800 career goals as Hartford Whalers beat St. Louis Blues, 3-0 at Springfield Civic Center.

1992 — Boston’s Ray Bourque becomes just the 3rd defenseman in NHL history to score 1,000 career points with a goal and 2 assists in the Bruins’ 5-5 tie with Washington Capitals at Boston Garden.

2020 — Watford beats Liverpool, 3-0 at Vicarage Road; first Reds loss since Manchester City January 2019; ends joint-longest winning streak (18) and second longest unbeaten run (44) in English top-flight football history.

OBSESSED WITH FOOTBALL: QB SONNY JURGENSEN

OBSESSED WITH BASEBALL: BASEBALL'S AMATUER DRAFT

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