On This Date: Ex-College Hoopers Make Their Mark on May 19 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 hoopers for colleges in Mississippi - Joe Gibbon (Ole Miss), Paul Gregory (MSU) and Claude Passeau (Millsaps) - had significant MLB things happen to them on this date. Unless you habitually pore over the content at baseballlibrary.com, baseballreference.com and nationalpastime.com, following is a May 19 calendar focusing on such versatile MLB athletes:

MAY 19

  • Cleveland Indians 1B Joe Adcock (Louisiana State's leading basketball scorer in 1945-46) contributed two homers and six RBI in a 7-6 loss against the Minnesota Twins in the nightcap of a 1963 twinbill.

  • Chicago Cubs 2B Glenn Beckert (three-year hoops letterman for Allegheny PA) had his 26-game hitting streak snapped by Ken Brett of the Philadelphia Phillies in 1973.

  • Tossing his second shutout in less than three weeks in 1981, Pittsburgh Pirates RHP Jim Bibby (Fayetteville State NC backup hooper and brother of UCLA All-American Henry Bibby) hurled a one-hitter against the Atlanta Braves.

  • Milwaukee Braves 2B Frank Bolling (averaged 7.3 ppg for Spring Hill AL in 1950-51) banged out four hits against the Chicago Cubs in the opener of a 1963 doubleheader.

  • LF Bob Cerv (ranked fourth on Nebraska's career scoring list in 1949-50 when finishing his career) traded by the Kansas City Athletics to the New York Yankees in 1960.

  • Cincinnati Reds 1B George Crowe (four-year letterman from 1939-40 through 1942-43 for Indiana Central after becoming first high school player named state's Mr. Basketball) collected four hits and four RBI in an 8-7 win against the Pittsburgh Pirates in the opener of a 1957 twinbill.

  • San Francisco Giants 3B Darrell Evans (member of Jerry Tarkanian-coached Pasadena City CA club winning 1967 state community college crown) homered twice in a 1978 game against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

  • RHP Mark Freeman (averaged 3.6 ppg for LSU as a senior in 1950-51) traded by the New York Yankees to the Chicago Cubs in 1960.

  • In 1968, LHP Joe Gibbon (two-time All-SEC forward for Ole Miss was nation's second-leading scorer as senior in 1956-57) yielded his only earned run in first 13 relief appearances with the San Francisco Giants.

  • In 1933, Chicago White Sox RHP Paul Gregory (Mississippi State hoops letterman in 1929-30) tossed his second complete-game victory in three weeks when allowing only one run.

  • Raising his batting average to .306, Chicago White Sox 1B Ron Jackson (second-team All-Mid-American Conference hoops choice from 1951-52 through 1953-54 led Western Michigan in scoring and rebounding his last two seasons) extended hitting streak to a career-high 10 games but finished the 1956 campaign with a .214 mark.

  • Philadelphia Phillies RF Danny Litwhiler (member of JV hoops team with Bloomsburg PA in mid-1930s) went 4-for-4 against the Pittsburgh Pirates in a 1942 contest.

  • Cleveland Indians CF Kenny Lofton (Arizona's leader in steals for 1988 Final Four team compiling 35-3 record) went 4-for-4 against the Baltimore Orioles in a 1993 outing.

  • LF Irv Noren (player of year for California community college state hoops champion Pasadena City in 1945) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Chicago Cubs in 1959.

  • Chicago Cubs RHP Claude Passeau (Millsaps MS hooper in late 1920s and early 1930s) pounded a grand slam in a 14-1 romp over the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1941.

  • In the midst of surrendering fewer than three earned runs in 15 of 17 starts from late April to early July, Cleveland Indians RHP Sonny Siebert (team-high 16.7 ppg for Missouri in 1957-58 as All-Big Eight Conference second-team selection) tossed a one-hit shutout against the Baltimore Orioles in the nightcap of a 1968 doubleheader.

  • Detroit Tigers 2B Gary Sutherland (averaged 7.4 ppg with USC in 1963-64) smacked two homers against the Minnesota Twins in a 1975 game.

  • San Diego Padres RF Will Venable (All-Ivy League first-team selection as junior and second-team choice as senior averaged 9.3 ppg under Princeton coach John Thompson III from 2001-02 through 2004-05) scored four runs and supplied three extra-base hits in a 10-5 win against the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2010.