This Week in Giants Baseball History, August 1 - 7

Sure, they weren't Giants, but SFDugout would like to extend congratulations to the newest members of Baseball's Hall of Fame – Wade Boggs and Ryne Sandberg, as well as longtime San Diego broadcaster Jerry Coleman and ESPN icon Peter Gammons – inducted this past weekend. Here are a few other HOFers from years past.

August 1
Ott’s Fifth Century: Hall of Famer Giant Mel Ott hit his 500th home run of his career on this date in 1945, as the San Francisco Giants defeated the Boston Braves 9-2 at the Polo Grounds. Ott would retire the following season with a then NL-record 511 roundtrippers – all as a Giant – and sits third on the all-time franchise list behind Willie Mays (646) and some guy who is sitting out this season with a bum knee.

August 2
Stretch’s First Deep Drive: Fourteen years and a day after Ott’s landmark home run, another Giants legend began his home run tear as Willie McCovey connected off of Pittsburgh Pirates hurler Ron Kline for his first career four-bagger on this date in 1959. Stretch would finish his career with 521 career home runs, 469 of them as a Giant (fourth in franchise history behind Ott). Twenty-seven years and a day later, McCovey was inducted into the Hall of Fame.

August 3
Clark Drives in Six in Win: Despite only two hits, Will Clark delivered six RBIs that powered the Giants to a 12-7 victory over the San Diego Padres at Jack Murphy Stadium on this date back in 1993. The Thrill hit a 3-run shot in the fifth inning off of Padres starter Doug Brocail, then gave the Giants the lead with a rare triple with the bases loaded off of former Giant Mark Davis in the seventh.

August 4
The Grand Slam that Wasn’t: The Giants and the Brooklyn Dodgers played to a 1-1 tie on this date in 1942 at the Polo Grounds. The game was called because of darkness and the 9:14pm wartime curfew. The Giants lucked out – Dodgers shortstop and Hall of Famer Pee Wee Reese had hit a grand slam in the top of the tenth, but the inning was nullified since the Giants couldn’t bat in the bottom of the inning.

August 5
Say Hey to the Hall, Willie: Arguably the best all-around player in baseball history got his due on this date, as Willie Mays was inducted into the Hall of Fame on this date back in 1979. In our current Steroid Era, it’s easy to overlook sluggers of previous eras, but compare May’s stats to anyone else’s, and allow the jaw-dropping to begin.

August 6
Just Say No, Kids: Smack dab in the midst of a pennant race and only five games behind the front-running Cincinnati Reds, the second-place Giants were jolted by the 60-day suspension of outfielder Rick Leach, who tested positive for drugs on this date in 1990. Leach never played in another Major League game.

August 7
Hacking in Houston: Giants cleanup hitter Jeffrey Leonard went 5-for-5 – all singles – in a 9-2 Giants victory over the Houston Astros on this date in 1984 at the Astrodome. The Giants offense made an easy winner out of Mike Krukow (atta babe), who went five innings.



Don Shin eats, breathes, thinks, and bleeds in Orange and Black. Pac Bell Park officially opened on his 25th birthday (the one year he decided to move out of the Bay Area!!!). For the 2000 playoff drive, he dyed his hair orange while studying in Korea. He watched Game 6 of the '02 World Series at a restaurant in LA, and couldn't finish his meal afterwards. Feel free to write him at dongsoo411@yahoo.com to commiserate, cheer, and complain.

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