York Revolution most recent addition to lengthy local professional baseball timeline
Red Lion’s Butch Wynegar, seen here with Brooks Robinson, played for the American League in the All-Star Game on July 13, 1976. At 20 years, 121 days, Wynegar earned was the youngest player to play in an All-Star Game. Wynegar’s home county’s York Revolution play in their home opener at Sovereign Bank Stadium in York, Pa., today. Robinson began his professional career with the York White Roses, predecessor of the Revs. Background posts: Butch Wynegar ranks bright among York’s sports stars, Season 2 of York’s campaign to come back – Iconic photos 21-23 and Batter up, pass the hot dog: York relishes the Revolution
The York Revolution opens its second season at Sovereign Bank Stadium today with its home opener against the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs.
A special section, “Second helping,” setting up the season appeared in the York Daily Record today.
It contains a thorough timeline of baseball in York since 1884, put together by baseball writer Jim Seip. Study this lineup, and you’ll be better versed on what baseball has meant to York County over the years:
YORK-AREA BASEBALL TIMELINE
1884: York formed its first minor league baseball clubs. The York White Roses went 10-10 before the Keystone Association disbanded following the exit of the Lancaster Red Stockings on June 7. The White Roses returned to action — this time in the Eastern League — July 18. They replaced the Harrisburg Senators. The White Roses went 10-21 in Eastern League play.
1903: Cuban X-Giants pitcher Danny McClellan threw a perfect game against the all-white York team of the Tri-State League. The game is recognized as the first perfect game in black baseball history. McClellan went on to pitch for the Philadelphia Giants and is considered one of the best pitchers during the century’s first decade.
1906: York White Roses manager George Heckert publicly denounces Lancaster’s team after it changed its name from the Maroons to the Red Roses. The name change was viewed as a copycat maneuver since York had called itself the White Roses since 1884.
1908: New Oxford’s Louis “Bull” Durham earns victories in both games of five doubleheaders for Indianapolis of the American Association. Five of the 10 victories were shutouts. Durham went on to star in silent films after his baseball career ended.
1914: York White Roses (16-37) of Tri-State League moved to Lancaster and become Red Roses on July 8. The White-then-Red Roses finished the season in last place.
1915: Gettysburg’s Eddie Plank leaves the Philadelphia Athletics, for whom he played in four World Series, to play for the St. Louis Terriers of the upstart Federal League. At age 39 he records the eighth and final 20-win season of his Hall of Fame career, going 21-11.
June 13, 1918: Glen Rock native and St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Cliff Heathcote hits for the cycle in a 19-inning game against Philadelphia in the Baker Bowl. The game ends in an 8-8 tie, one of four ties in the National League that season.
Oct. 15, 1923: Red Lion native Hinkey Haines scores the go-ahead run for the New York Yankees in Game 6 of the 1923 World Series. The Yankees victory clinches the series. Pinch-running for Fred Hofman, Haines scored on a bases-loaded single by Bobby Meusel. Just 24, Haines never again played in major league baseball. He opted to play quarterback for the New York Giants football team, and helped the team win the 1927 NFL championship.
Sept. 25, 1925: York defeats Williamsport 5-3 in 11 innings in the fourth and final game of a best-of-five series to decide the New York-Pennsylvania League title. York first baseman Del Bissonette homered in the bottom of the 11th to clinch the title. York fans would have to wait until 1969 to celebrate another minor league championship.
May 27, 1928: The New York Yankees defeated the York White Roses 9-2 in an exhibition game at York Eagles Park. Babe Ruth homered. Most of the Yankees starters, including Lou Gehrig, played. Tony Lazzeri did not make the trip. He was replaced in the lineup by another future Hall of Famer — Leo “The Lip” Durocher.
1931: Pleasureville native Paul “Country Jake” Stephens plays shortstop for the Homestead Grays — one of the greatest teams of all time. The Grays post a 163-23 record against all competition during the season and feature teenage phenom Josh Gibson at catcher.
June 16, 1943: White Roses pitcher Thomas “Lefty” George, 56, threw a three-hit shutout against rival Lancaster. George held Lancaster third baseman George Kell hitless, snapping the future Hall of Famer’s 32-game hitting streak.
July 11, 1944: York native Ken Raffensberger earns a victory for the National League in the All-Star Game. Pitching in relief, he throws two innings of one-hit ball.
Sept. 16, 1945: Wrightsville’s Gene Crumling records the only hit in his major league career, singling off future Hall of Fame slugger Jimmie Fox in the second game of a doubleheader for the St. Louis Cardinals. At the end of his career, Foxx pitched part-time for the Phillies. Crumling went 1-for-12 during a career that lasted six games.
Jan. 15, 1947: York County native Jimmy Sheckard was struck by an automobile and killed while walking to his job as a gasoline attendant in Lancaster. He was 68. Sheckard played 14 years in the big leagues, playing for the Chicago Cubs from 1906 to 1912. He was on the World Series championship teams of 1907 and 1908. The Cubs have not won the Series since.
1947: After shifting the site of its minor league ballpark numerous times during the first half of the 20th century, York moved its minor league team from West York’s Memorial Field to York’s Memorial Stadium. York’s minor league clubs continued to play at Memorial Stadium until the York Pirates folded at the conclusion of the 1969 season.
August 25, 1950: York White Roses pitcher Tony Segzda tosses a no-hitter 6-0 victory against Sunbury.
Sept. 29, 1954: During the first game of the World Series, New York Giants center fielder Willie Mays made an over-the-shoulder grab of a 450-foot blast hit by York native Vic Wertz. The play is known simply as “The Catch.”
June 3, 1955: Second baseman Brooks Robinson made his professional baseball debut for the York White Roses in front of 939 fans at Memorial Stadium. Robinson went 0-for-1.
Sept. 29, 1957: Jacobus’ Ray Shearer records his only major league hit in the bottom of the ninth inning in the final game of the 1957 regular season. A major league veteran of just two games, Shearer would come around to score the game’s winning run on a single by future Hall of Famer Red Schoendienst in Milwaukee’s 4-3 win against Cincinnati.
1962: York police officer Bill Kapp arrests a young man who walked out of a bar on Princess Street and began turning over garbage cans. In town to play the White Roses, 19-year-old Elmira catcher Andy Etchebarren was charged with disorderly conduct, and finished the three-game series hearing boos from the York fans. Etchebarren went on to win a World Series ring with the 1966 Orioles.
1965: Baltimore native Joe Klein suits up for the White Roses for the first time. Klein would later become the general manager of the Cleveland Indians, Detroit Tigers and Texas Rangers. In 1998, he became the executive director of the Atlantic League, a title he still holds.
1967: York completes one of the worst seasons of any team in Eastern League history. Opponents hold York hitless four times. York’s talented left-handed pitcher Dick Such compiled an 0-16 record with a 2.81 ERA.
Sunday, April 21, 1968: The York Pirates and Reading Phillies play the first outdoor game on artificial turf at York’s Memorial Stadium. Before then artificial turf had strictly been an indoor oddity. (The Houston Astrodome had been fitted with synthetic grass in 1966.) Reading and future major leaguers like Larry Bowa and Denny Doyle beat York 5-3 in front of 6,248 fans, the largest crowd in York’s minor league history.
July 9, 1968: York Pirates Silvano Quezada pitches a no-hitter in 2-0 victory against Elmira.
May 13, 1969: York Pirates pitcher Gene Garber strikes out 16 and walks three in York’s 10-4 victory against Waterbury, Conn., in front of 174 fans. Garber spent the season as a part-time player and full-time student at Elizabethtown College.
Tuesday, Sept. 2, 1969: Catcher Carlton Fisk homered and tripled to lead the Pittsfield (Mass.) Red Sox to a 7-4 victory against the York Pirates in the first game of a best-of-three Eastern League playoff series. The series was never completed because of rainouts, and Eastern League President Thomas Richardson crowned York champions. It would be the last game played by a York franchise in the 20th century.
Oct. 14, 1971: Former York White Roses outfielder and city resident Gene Clines hits a triple in Game 5 of the World Series. It’s Clines only hit of the series, and he scores when Roberto Clemente singles him home. The Pirates beat the Orioles in seven games to win the franchise’s first World Series since 1960.
1974: Former White Roses left-hander Wilbur Wood (1962) notches his fourth-straight 20-win season for the Chicago White Sox. In an amazing display of stamina, Wood threw at least 320 innings each season from 1971 through 1974. He also lost 20 games in 1973.
July 13, 1976: Red Lion High graduate Butch Wynegar enters the All-Star Game as a pinch-hitter for the American League. At the time, Wynegar (20 years, 121 days) becomes the youngest player to appear in an All-Star game at the time.
1978: Hanover’s Jim Spencer struggles through a difficult season offensively, but the New York Yankees manage to rally from 14 games back to catch the Red Sox and repeat as World Champions. In the one-game playoff that decides the AL East title, Spencer flied out in the seventh inning — setting the stage for Bucky Dent’s unlikely two-out, three-run home run.
July 10, 1979: Former White Roses outfielder Del Unser (1966-67) sets a major league record by hitting his third consecutive pinch-hit home run for the Philadelphia Phillies against the San Diego Padres.
Oct. 21, 1980: Goldsboro’s Greg Gross replaces Lonnie Smith and is in left field for the final outs of the World Series when Tug McGraw struck out Willie Wilson and the Phillies won their only championship in franchise history.
July 4, 1983: Red Lion’s Butch Wynegar catches Dave Righetti’s no-hitter.
Oct. 6, 1985: Red Lion’s Butch Wynegar catches Phil Neikro’s 300th victory.
1988: Former York Pirates manager Joe Morgan (1968-69) becomes manager of the Boston Red Sox near midseason and leads the team to the American League East title. The Sox would win the division again in 1990.
June 13, 1989: Delone Catholic graduate John Dopson ties a major league record by committing four balks in a game against the Tigers.
1994: York mayor Charlie Robertson announced his intentions to bring minor league baseball back to the city.
1998: Atlantic League completes its first season. The Atlantic City Surf defeated the Bridgeport Bluefish in the championship series for the six-team independent league. Bridgeport, Newark and Somerset are the only teams still in the league from the inaugural season.
2000: The San Diego Padres draft Mark Phillips with the ninth selection in the amateur baseball draft. A standout at Hanover High, Phillips signs with San Diego for $2.2 million.
May 11, 2005: York’s Travis Hake registers the first Lancaster Barnstormers hit at Clipper Magazine Stadium. The bloop single falls into right-center field. Hake would remain with the team through its league championship run in 2006.
Sept. 4, 2005: Northern York graduate Anthony Lerew makes his major league debut with the Atlanta Braves. He retired the two batters he faced.
May 6, 2006: Former York Pirates team owner Roy Jackson watches his horse, Barbaro, win the Kentucky Derby by the largest margin of victory since 1946. Jackson owned the last championship team in York, when the Pirates won the Eastern League title.
Sept. 29, 2006: Dignitaries attend the ground-breaking ceremony for Sovereign Bank Stadium. The ownership group Opening Day Partners includes former White Roses player Brooks Robinson.
Dec. 20, 2006: Former Orioles catcher Chris Hoiles is named the first manager in York Revolution team history. He is joined on the coaching staff by former Orioles Al Bumbry, Tippy Martinez and Ryan Minor.
Feb. 3, 2007: Revolution sign the first player in club history, agreeing to terms with former Montreal Expos outfielder Peter Bergeron. Bergeron earned a minor league contract with the Pittsburgh Pirates, one of six York players to earn promotions in the inaugural season.
May 4, 2007: The York Revolution play the first game in team history, losing 15-8 in Bridgeport, Conn. Former major league pitcher Wayne Franklin starts the game, but York loses after Bridgeport rallies for 12 runs in the sixth inning.
June 15, 2007: The York Revolution play the first minor league game in York since 1969. York’s Nate Espy homers over the 38-foot high fence in left field, but York loses to the Newark Bears 7-4 in front of 5,460 fans.
Aug. 9, 2007: Tike Redman reaches the major leagues with the Baltimore Orioles after starting the season with York. He is the only player who started the season in the Atlantic League to reach the majors in 2007. He finishes the season batting .318 in 40 games for the Orioles.