On September 11th, 2001, life as we knew it was no longer the same. We witnessed an act of war that we hope we will never see
again. Americans, from the east to west, united together at a time of need. I remember being in Mr. Funk’s 6th grade class at Dodge intermediate school on 9/11 when the attacks were happening. Being the baseball fan that I am, I remember asking him if the Yankees & Mets were going to able to play that evening. The answer was no, and there were no MLB games played at all for the next week.
The Cleveland Indians have been playing baseball since 1901. They have been around during a lot of American events. They have played on some of the most historic days in not just American history, but world history. Here are some of the dates in history:
September 11th, 2001: As you may remember, no professional sports were played for some amount of time after the attacks on America. The night before the bombings, The
Indians lost at home to the White Sox 7-1. The Tribe didn’t play another game until September 18, when the hosted the Kansas City Royals. The Indians would beat the Royals 11-2 and improving their season record to 83-62.
The Sinking of the Titanic (April 15th, 1912): It will be 100 years ago next April and the Indians were known as the Naps. Cleveland hosted the St. Louis Browns at League Park. The Naps would go on the beat the Browns 8-5 and improving their season record to 3-2.
The Death of Hitler (April 30th, 1945): This day marked the end of WWII in Europe and the troops were coming back home shortly after. The Cleveland Indians did
not play on this day because it was a Monday. Back in the day, teams would play double headers on Sundays and then have Mondays off. On this day in history, the Indians record was 2-7.
The Moon Landing (July 20th, 1969): “One small step for man, one large step for mankind”. When Ohio’s very own, Neil Armstrong, landed on the moon, The Indians spilt a double header with the Tigers at Municipal Stadium. The Tigers would take the first game 3-2, but the Tribe would take the night game 5-4. The Indians would end the day with a record of 38-59.
Woodstock (August 15-18th, 1969): Peace, Love, and Rock ‘n’ Roll. As the most famous concert of all time was going on, the Indians’ California dreams were nothing but a nightmare as they played a 4 game series against the Angels out west. The Tribe would take the first game of the series, but then lose the next 3. The Tribe record on August 18th, 1969 was 50-73.
The Kent State Shooting (May 4th, 1970): Just like the day that Hitler died, the Indians did not play on Monday, May 4th, 1970 because they had a
travel day. With Kent State only being 35 miles away from Cleveland, the 9-12 Indians were on the road leaving Kansas City after a weekend series against the Royals and was heading to Chicago to take on the White Sox.
The Birth of Adam Gockowski (November 15, 1989): As you can tell, the Indians do not play in the month of November, and most likely, they never will. I was born at 2:04 am on November 15th, 1989. The night on the 14th, when my parents were at the hospital, The Cavs beat the Nets in New Jersey 103-92. On my actually day of birth, the Cavs beat the Golden State Warriors in Cleveland 129-104. I was 20 hours long when the Cavs won!
The Death of Michael Jackson (June 25th, 2009): I remember this moment very well because I was at the Indians game in Pittsburgh when this happened. The Tribe was finishing up a 3 game series against the Bucs when I got a text message telling me that the King of Pop died. Before the game started, I walked around
the stadium and told everyone I saw that Michael Jackson died. I went to the Indians bullpen to watch Cliff Lee warm up, Kelly Shoppach was putting out his catcher’s gear in the bullpen and I broke the news to him. I broke the news to he city of Pittsburgh and to Kelly Shoppach! The Tribe would lose that game 3-2 and had a terrible 30-44 record.
LeBron James’ Decision (July 8th, 2010): When “The King of Cleveland” decided that his castle was not good enough for him and he took his “talents” to South
Beach, no one was paying any attention to what the Indians were doing. The Indians lost against the Rays in Tampa Bay 5-2, lowering their record to 33-53. Florida was not good to us that night.
The Death of Osama Bin Laden (May 1st, 2011): Almost 10 years after the attacks of 9/11, American troops were finally able to kill Osama Bin Laden. The Indians beat the Tigers earlier in the day 5-4 but game was over shadowed by Bin Laden’s death.
Final Words: Yes, we have and always will look up to athletes for their talents on the field. Let
us not forget those who fought and served for our freedom. Baseball has been there for us Americans during the good and bad. So, all I have to say is God Bless America and Play Ball!