One year ago on this date, the first ever NL Wild Card game was contested between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Atlanta Braves. Turner Field was the venue and those in attendance were “treated” to two history worthy events. Unfortunately, one severely overshadowed the other.
The first event was the infamous “infield fly rule” call made by left field umpire Sam Holbrook. A shallow fly ball off the bat of Andrelton Simmons drops in between left fielder Matt Holliday and shortstop Pete Kozma.
Here’s how it looked from the view of a Braves fan in attendance.
You can clearly see Holbrook make the call at about the 1:10 mark.
Once the call from Holbrook is upheld and the fans are made aware of what had occurred, a delay of 19 minutes would ensue as fans pelted the playing field with debris. Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez would file a protest. That was quickly rejected by MLB Vice-President Joe Torre.
Cardinals closer Jason Motte would record the final four outs of the game and the Cards left Atlanta with a 6-3 victory.
Lost amid the controversy of the game and the second history-worthy event would be that this was the last game in the career of Chipper Jones.
1986 – Texas Rangers rookie Pete Incaviglia would become MLB’s 16th rookie to ever record 30 home runs in a season. Another honor Incaviglia had that season was leading all of baseball in strikeouts with 185.
1980 – The Los Angeles Dodgers complete a three game series sweep against the Houston Astros as LA took the final game, 4-3. All three games were decided by one run. The win would force a one-game playoff to determine the NL West champ which would be played the following day.
1911 – The National Commission, a three-member body which oversaw baseball from 1903 to 1920, sells motion picture rights to the World Series. The deal was to being in $3,500. THe snag was the players got wind and demanded a share. The Commission cancelled the deal.