On This Date: Ex-College Cagers Make Their Mark on September 11 MLB Games

Extra! Extra! Read all about memorable major league baseball achievements and moments involving former college basketball players! Baseball is portrayed as a thinking man's game but only 4% of active MLB players earned college diplomas. Nonetheless, numerous ex-college hoopers had front-row seats to many of the most notable games, transactions and dates in MLB history.

Former NYU hoopers Ralph Branca and Hank Greenberg made MLB headlines on this date. Unless you habitually pore over the content at baseballlibrary.com, baseballreference.com and nationalpastime.com, following is a September 11 calendar focusing on such versatile MLB athletes:


  • Milwaukee Braves 1B Joe Adcock (Louisiana State's leading basketball scorer in 1945-46) suffered a broken hand, ending his 1954 season.

  • St. Louis Browns RHP Elden Auker (All-Big Six first-five selection with Kansas State in 1931-32) fired his second five-hit shutout in a 10-day span in 1940.

  • Pittsburgh Pirates LF Carson "Skeeter" Bigbee (Oregon hoops letterman in 1915) banged out four hits for the second time in a seven-game span in 1919.

  • Although only 21 years old, Brooklyn Dodgers RHP Ralph Branca (sixth-leading scorer for NYU in 1943-44) notched his 20th victory in 1947.

  • Baltimore Orioles rookie OF Al Bumbry (Virginia State's runner-up in scoring with 16.7 ppg as freshman in 1964-65) provided four hits for the second time in a five-game span in 1973.

  • Detroit Tigers 1B Darrell Evans (member of Jerry Tarkanian-coached Pasadena City CA club that won 1967 state community college crown) went 4-for-4 in a 1984 contest against the Baltimore Orioles.

  • Boston Braves 1B Kerby Farrell (key hooper for couple of strong Freed-Hardeman TN squads in mid-1930s) supplied four hits against the New York Giants in a 13-inning game in 1943.

  • Chicago Cubs LF Jim Gleeson (captain and all-conference honoree graduated in 1933 from Rockhurst MO) stroked three doubles in an 8-5 win against the Brooklyn Dodgers in the opener of a 1940 doubleheader.

  • Detroit Tigers 1B Hank Greenberg (enrolled at NYU on hoops scholarship in 1929 but attended college only one semester) secured four hits against the Washington Senators in a 1935 outing.

  • San Francisco Giants All-Star LHP Atlee Hammaker (averaged 5.3 ppg as a freshman in 1976-77 and 4.9 as a sophomore in 1977-78 under East Tennessee State coach Sonny Smith) fanned 14 Houston Astros in a 1983 game.

  • Brooklyn Robins CF Harvey Hendrick (Vanderbilt hoops letterman in 1918) went 4-for-4 against the Philadelphia Phillies in the opener of a 1928 twinbill.

  • New York Giants LF Monte Irvin (Lincoln PA hooper 1 1/2 years in late 1930s) contributed his fifth steal of home during the 1951 campaign.

  • Milwaukee Braves SS Johnny Logan (played for Binghamton in 1948-49) contributed four hits for the second time in three games in 1955.

  • New York Giants RHP Christy Mathewson (Bucknell hooper at turn of 20th Century) tossed shutouts in 1906 and 1909.

  • CF Bake McBride (averaged 12.7 ppg and 8.1 rpg in 21 games with Westminster MO in 1968-69 and 1969-70) scampered all the way home from first base after an errant pickoff attempt for the decisive run, giving the St. Louis Cardinals a 25-inning, 4-3 win at New York in 1974. The marathon was the longest game to a decision in MLB history, lasting 7 hours 4 minutes.

  • Detroit Tigers 2B Dutch Meyer (TCU hoops letterman in 1934-35 and 1935-36) manufactured two doubles among his four hits in a 5-4 triumph against the New York Yankees in 1941.

  • Los Angeles Dodgers LF Wally Moon (averaged 4.3 ppg with Texas A&M in 1948-49 and 1949-50) delivered two homers against the Pittsburgh Pirates in the opener of a 1959 twinbill. Moon also homered in his next three contests.

  • Washington Senators 2B Buddy Myer (Mississippi State hoops letterman in 1923-24) went 4-for-4 and scored four runs against the Chicago White Sox in the nightcap of a 1932 doubleheader.

  • New York Yankees 3B Graig Nettles (shot 87.8% from free-throw line for San Diego State in 1963-64) cracked two homers against the Milwaukee Brewers in a 1975 outing.

  • Cincinnati Reds 2B Pinky Pittenger (set Toledo's single-game scoring standard with 49 points in 1918-19) went 6-for-8, including his lone MLB homer, and scored five runs against the Boston Braves in a 1927 twinbill.

  • Chicago Cubs INF Paul Popovich (averaged 3.3 ppg for West Virginia's 1960 NCAA playoff team) pounded a grand slam in a 7-0 victory against the St. Louis Cardinals in 1971.

  • Philadelphia Phillies RHP Robin Roberts (Michigan State's second-leading scorer in 1945-46 and 1946-47) hurled a three-hit shutout against the San Francisco Giants in 1959, ending rookie 1B Willie McCovey's 22-game hitting streak.

  • A pinch-hit, three-run homer in the 12th inning by OF Champ Summers (led SIUE in scoring in 1969-70 after doing same with Nicholls State in 1964-65) powered the Chicago Cubs to a 4-1 win against the Philadelphia Phillies in 1976.

  • OF Evar Swanson (played all five positions for Knox IL when it was known as Lombard College) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Chicago White Sox for two players to be designated in 1932.

  • Philadelphia Phillies CF Cy Williams (Notre Dame forward in 1909-10) stroked three doubles against the Pittsburgh Pirates in a 1920 game. Three years later, Williams homered twice against the Brooklyn Dodgers in a 1923 contest.

  • San Francisco Giants CF Randy Winn (Santa Clara backcourtmate of eventual two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Steve Nash in 1993-94) doubled in his fifth consecutive outing with multiple hits in 2005.