In 1902, noting the youth movement lead by new manger Frank Selee, a local newspaper penned the nickname Cubs for the first time. The moniker prevailed over time and was officially adopted by the club in 1907. It is currently one of the longest-running and most-beloved alias’ in all of sports.
Banks and Williams
Ernie Banks’ uniform number (14) is imprinted on the flag which flies from the leftfield foul pole. Billy Williams’ No. 26 flies from the rightfield foul pole.
Cub in the Stands
The first National League game at Wrigley Field was played April 20, 1916, when the Cubs beat the Cincinnati Reds 7-6 in 11 innings. A bear cub was in attendance at the game.
Cubs in 1930
In 1930, outfielder Hack Wilson put together one of the greatest hitting seasons in baseball history, pounding 56 homers and driving in 191 runs. On June 27, the largest crowd ever to see a game at Wrigley Field (51,556) is on hand as the Cubs play the Brooklyn Dodgers. But paid attendance is only 19,748, due to the Ladies Day promotion.
Cubs in the ’70s
During the 1970s, the Cubs saw many of their greats ride off into the sunset. Mr. Cub (Ernie Banks) retires from the game in 1971 with 512 home runs. Three years later he and his familiar greeting of, “Let’s play two!” are inducted into the Hall of Fame. Billy Williams , who in 1971 becomes the first player in NL history to play in 1,000 consecutive games, is traded to Oakland on October 23, 1974.
The home of the Cubs became known as “Cubs Park” in 1920 after the Wrigley family purchased the team from Weeghman. It was named “Wrigley Field” in 1926 in honor of William Wrigley Jr., the club’s owner.
Cubs vs. George Burns
Since the Chicago Cubs last won a world series, George Burns celebrated his 20th, 30th, 40th, 50th, 60th, 70th, 80th, 90th, and 100th birthdays.
Cubs vs. Haley’s Comet
Since the Cubs last won a world series, Haley’s Comet has passed Earth twice.
Ernie Bank’s 500th
Wrigley Field was host for Ernie Banks’ 500th career home run on May 12, 1970, vs. Atlanta’s Pat Jarvis.
Federal League Folds
When the Federal League folded for financial reasons after the 1915 campaign, Weeghman purchased the Cubs from the Taft family of Cincinnati and moved the club to the two-year-old ballpark at the corner of Clark and Addison Streets.
Federals and Whales
Weeghman Park (now Wrigley Field) was the home of Chicago’s entry in the Federal League and was the property of Charles H. Weeghman. The club was known as both the Federals and the Whales.
First Became ‘Cubs’ in 1902
The name ‘Cubs’ was first applied in 1902. At the time they played on the West Side, showcasing the famous combo of shortstop Joe Tinker, second baseman Johnny Evers, and first baseman Frank Chance.
First Subway Series
The first “Subway” World Series occurred in Chicago in 1906, between the White Sox and Cubs.
The Cubs were favored, but the White Sox won in six games.
Fly Ball Charges
In 1905, the president of the Chicago Cubs filed charges against a fan in the bleachers for catching a fly ball and keeping it.
Good in 1876
The Cubs won the very first league championship in 1876.
Greg Maddux at Wrigley
Cub pitcher Greg Maddux won the NL Cy Young award in 1992, after posting a 20-and-11 record.
Lights at Wrigley
Instead of becoming one of the first teams to install lights, the Cubs went on to become one of the last when, after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, P.K. Wrigley donates the lighting equipment that he had recently purchased to the War Department in 1941.
Longest Winning Streaks
The Cubs won 21 games in a row in both 1880 and 1935. The streak in 1880 included 1 tie game, but it’s still in the record books; it was a league record until 1916 when the New York Giants won 26 in a row. These 2 winning streaks are still the second longest in MLB history as of 2002.
Mark Grace (the batter with the most hits in the 1990s)spent his entire career as the Cubs’ first baseman before he was let go in the 2000 season. By the 2001 season, he was in the World Series with his new team, the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Never Been Hit
No batted ball has ever hit the centerfield scoreboard at Wrigley Field. Two baseballs barely missed – a homer hit onto Sheffield Avenue (right-center) by Bill Nicholson in 1948, and one hit by Roberto Clemente onto Waveland Avenue (left-center) in 1959.
The Wrigley Field bleachers and scoreboard were constructed in 1937 when the outfield area was renovated to provide improved and expanded seating. The original scoreboard remains intact.
Pete Rose at Wrigley
Wrigley Field was host to Pete Rose’s 4,191st career hit, which tied him with Ty Cobb for the most hits in baseball history. Rose singled off Reggie Patterson September 8, 1985.
Wrigley Field was host to the great May 2, 1917, pitching duel between Jim “Hippo” Vaughn and the Reds’ Fred Toney. Both Vaughn and Toney threw no-hitters for 9.0 innings before Cincinnati’s Jim Thorpe (of Olympic fame) drove in the only run in the 10th inning. Toney finished with a no-hitter.
Ruth at Wrigley
Wrigley Field was the site of Babe Ruth’s “called shot,” when Ruth allegedly pointed to a bleacher location during Game 3 of the 1932 World Series. Ruth then hit Charlie Root’s next pitch for a homer.
In 1990, Ryne Sandberg led the NL with 40 home runs, the third-highest total ever for a second baseman. Sandberg also established a major-league record by playing errorless ball for 123 straight games.
Sammy in 1995
When Sammy Sosa arrived at spring training in 1995 what did he have shaved into the back of his head?
Second-Oldest in 2001
The Friendly Confines is the second-oldest ballpark in the major leagues behind Boston’s Fenway Park (1912).
The Beginning of the End
With the country in the middle of the Cold War, the Cubs as a team are in the middle of a frigid decade. After experiencing success for the majority of their existence, the Cubs finish the 50s without a postseason appearance, the first decade of a drought that would last until 1984.
Originally known as Weeghman Park, Wrigley Field was built on the grounds once occupied by a seminary.
Three 60 Home Run Seasons
On October 2, 2001 Sammy Sosa became the firt player EVER to have three 60 home run seasons. Good job Sammy!
Throw It Back!!!
Throwing the opposing tema’s home run balls back on the field is a tradition at Wrigley field. Cubs fans do this for balls hit or thrown to them by the other team. You could say that it’s a sign of disrespect, or fans saying, “I only will keep balls from Cub’s players”.
Sox fans do this sometimes at Comisky as well. Our resident White Sox expert explained, “they (Sox fans) only do that (throw opponent’s balls back) when they’re angry. Otherwise, they’re pretty greedy (they want to keep the ball).”
W & L
One of the traditions at Wrigley Field is the flying of a flag bearing a “W” or an “L” atop the scoreboard after a game. A white flag with a blue “W” indicates a victory; a blue flag with a white “L” denotes a loss.
Weeghman Park in 1920
In 1920, Weeghman Park becomes known as Cubs Park, after chewing gum magnet William Wrigley buys out the remainder of Charles Weeghman’s share of the club. The park would undergo yet another name change in 1926 when it becomes Wrigley Field.
What’s Your Name Again?
The northsiders got their current name in 1902, but they weren’t always known as the “Cubs.”
At one point or another they were also named the “Colts” and the “Orphans!”
Wrigley’s First Night Game
The first night game took place August 8 against Philadelphia, but was rained out after 3 1/2 innings.
Wrigley Field is affected by wind conditions more than any other major league park. Breezes off Lake Michigan favor pitchers, but winds blowing toward Lake Michigan take homers with them.
The bleacher wall at Wrigley Field is 11.5 feet high. The basket attached to the wall was constructed in 1970.
The cost of building Weeghman Park (Wrigley Field), which had a seating capacity of 14,000, was estimated at $250,000. The infield and outfield consisted of more than 4,000 yards of soil and four acres of bluegrass.
The original vines in Wrigley Field’s outfield were purchased and planted by Bill Veeck in September 1937. Veeck strung bittersweet from the top of the wall to the bottom, then planted the ivy at the base of the wall.