Today in Sports History: July 17th

7/17/1960 - Newcombe instantly ejected

Many pitchers have gotten tossed early in a game, but none have been thrown out quite as quickly as Reds pitcher Don Newcombe. While warming up for a game in Pittsburgh, he got in argument with home plate umpire Dusty Boggess, who complained about the length of his shirt sleeves. Newcombe became incensed and was tossed before throwing a single pitch, becoming the first pitcher in baseball history to accomplish such a feat.

As an interesting side note, the official box score of the game lists Don Newcombe as the starter, even though he never faced a batter. Cal McLish filled in and gave up three runs in seven innings, but was the losing pitcher, as Tom Cheney -- a pitcher who was otherwise known for striking out 21 in a single game -- threw nine innings of shutout baseball.

7/17/1990 - Twins turn two triple plays

The Minnesota Twins accomplish something that had never been done before as they turn not one, but two triple plays in a game at Fenway Park. The triple plays occurred in the fourth and eighth innings and were nearly identical; in both instances, Twins third baseman Gary Gaetti stepped on third base on a ground ball, threw the ball to second baseman Al Newman, who then threw the ball to first baseman Kent Hrbek.

There had been over 600 occurrences of the rare triple play, but never had more than one happened in the same game. It was a moot point though, as the Red Sox beat the Twins anyway, 1-0. The next day, the Twins tied an American League record by recording six double plays, but again lost to the Sox, 5-4.

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