Kelloggs Cards

Kelloggs Cards

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Bill Veeck Got 1976 Off to a Good Start on This Day

1976 was a great year in baseball.  The bicentennial was celebrated along with the 100th year of the National League.  I went to the Cubs Opening Day game that year.  They used to always sell some number of tickets (15,000?) on the day of the game.  They advertised that so I should remember that number.

Going to Opening Day was a fun ritual for us.  I think I did that for four years as a kid and about eight more as an adult.  How did I manage to do that as a kid?  My neighbor always liked taking his kids and I was able to tag along.

One year that trip to Wrigley Field resulted in me ended up in the Principal's Office.  School called my neighbor to see why all of the boys were absent on a day where standardized testing was happening.  The mom said they were going to the Cubs game with me.  "I would have gotten away with it if it weren't for those meddling kids parents".

My mother now required me to go to school.  The principal didn't have a lot of kind words for me when I showed up late.  Luckily the neighbor was still interested in going to the game.  He met us at school and off we went at noon when Chicago Public Schools had lunch.  I'll stick to baseball and leave out my repeat engagement in the Principal's Office to another day.

It was definitely one of my favorite days at the ballpark.  They gave us a certificate celebrating 100 years of National League baseball.  I still have it.  I didn't remember the score (5-4) or how they won (Rick Monday singled in the winning run) but I do remember them winning in the bottom of the ninth.  

Cubs with Kellogg's cards from that game included - Rick Monday, Joe Cardenal, Bill Madlock, Andre Thornton and Rick Reuschel.  Mets included Dave Kingman, John Milner, Ed Kranepool, Joe Torre, Felix Millan, Bud Harrelson and Jerry Koosman.

What did Bill Veeck do?   On this day in 1976 Veeck sold pieces of the infield turf that was used for a few years at Comiskey Park.  They replaced it with natural grass which certainly looked better.  If you see old photos from Comiskey look for the ones with the turf on the infield - it looked horrible.

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