On This Date: Ex-College Hoopers Make Their Mark on July 15 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 Swarthmore PA hoopers George Earnshaw and Jack Ogden made news as MLB pitchers on this date. Unless you habitually pore over the content at baseballlibrary.com, baseballreference.com and nationalpastime.com, following is a July 15 calendar focusing on such versatile MLB athletes:


  • In 1939, a disputed home run down the LF foul line into the upper deck at the Polo Grounds by Cincinnati Reds CF Harry Craft (four-sport letterman including basketball with Mississippi College in early 1930s) hastened the advent of "fair" pole screens.

  • RHP Bill Crouch (Eastern Michigan hoops captain in 1927-28) hurled the first 10 frames for the St. Louis Cardinals in their 16-inning, 3-2 win against the Philadelphia Phillies in 1941.

  • Boston Braves SS Dick Culler (#9 jersey retired by High Point for hoops Little All-American in 1935 and 1936) went 4-for-4 in a 3-2 triumph against the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1946.

  • Detroit Tigers 1B Walt Dropo (first Connecticut's hooper to average 20 points for single season with 21.7 ppg in 1942-43) tied a MLB record with 12 consecutive hits before his streak was snapped in the nightcap of a doubleheader against the Washington Senators in 1952.

  • RHP George Earnshaw (Swarthmore PA hooper in 1922) traded by the Brooklyn Dodgers to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1936.

  • Chicago Cubs 3B Howard Freigau (hooper for Ohio Wesleyan) had his 21-game hitting streak snapped by the Philadelphia Phillies in 1925.

  • Boston Red Sox 1B Dick Gernert (Temple letterman in 1948-49 when averaging 2.7 ppg) collected two homers and five RBI in a 7-5 win against the Chicago White Sox in 1952.

  • In 1967, a line drive by Pittsburgh Pirates RF Roberto Clemente broke the leg of St. Louis Cardinals RHP Bob Gibson (Creighton's leading scorer and rebounder in 1955-56 and 1956-57). But Gibson returned from the injury to lead the Cards to the World Series championship.

  • Philadelphia Phillies RHP Andy Karl (Manhattan hoops letterman from 1933 through 1935) registered the lone complete game in his MLB career in a 3-1 defeat against the Cincinnati Reds in 1945.

  • New York Giants RHP Christy Mathewson (Bucknell hooper at turn of 20th Century) hurled a no-hitter against St. Louis with a 5-0 win in 1901. Twelve years later, he used only 70 pitches to outduel Cincinnati Reds P Three Finger Brown, 4-2, extending Mathewson's streak of innings without issuing a walk to 61.

  • St. Louis Cardinals RF Wally Moon (averaged 4.3 ppg with Texas A&M in 1948-49 and 1949-50) smacked two triples in the nightcap of a 1956 twinbill against the Philadelphia Phillies.

  • 1B Cotton Nash (three-time All-American averaged 22.7 ppg and 12.3 rpg in Kentucky career from 1961-62 through 1963-64) traded by the Chicago White Sox to the Minnesota Twins in 1969.

  • Cincinnati Reds RHP Jack Ogden (Swarthmore PA hooper in 1918) hurled a five-hit shutout against the Boston Braves in 1931.

  • In 1963, Chicago White Sox LHP Gary Peters (Grove City PA hooper in mid-1950s) fanned 13 Baltimore Orioles batters while hurling a one-hitter in the first of back-to-back shutouts by him.

  • 1B-OF Norm Siebern (member of Southwest Missouri State's back-to-back NAIA Tournament hoops titlists in 1952 and 1953) purchased from the San Francisco Giants by the Boston Red Sox in 1967.

  • In 1997, the Montreal Expos announced the retirement of closer Lee Smith (averaged 3.4 ppg and 1.9 rpg with Northwestern State in 1976-77).

  • Minnesota Twins 2B Jim Snyder (Eastern Michigan hoops letterman in 1951-52) jacked his lone MLB homer (against Washington Senators in 1964).

  • Montreal Expos rookie LF Mike Stenhouse (averaged 4.1 ppg for Harvard in 1977-78) smacked a homer in back-to-back games against the Cincinnati Reds in 1984.

  • C John Stephenson (scored 1,361 points for William Carey MS in early 1960s) hit a pinch two-run homer in the ninth inning to carry the California Angels to a 4-3 win against the Milwaukee Brewers in 1972.

  • Philadelphia Athletics rookie RF Kite Thomas (averaged 5.1 ppg for Kansas State in 1946-47) supplied a career-high three hits, including a double and homer, in the opener of a 1952 doubleheader against the St. Louis Browns.

  • Boston Red Sox 3B Billy Werber (first Duke hoops All-American in 1929-30) amassed four hits and four runs in the opener of a 1934 twinbill against the St. Louis Browns.

  • A three-run homer in the bottom of the eighth inning by RF Chuck Workman (All-MIAA first-five selection for Central Missouri State as sophomore and junior in mid-1930s) proved to be the difference as the Boston Braves beat the Brooklyn Dodgers, 6-3, in 1944.