On June 6, 1955, third baseman Jackie Robinson walked to the plate in the bottom of the ninth to face Cardinals left-hander Luis Arroyo. Robinson was 0-for-3 in the Dodgers 50th ballgame of the year, having hit into a double play in the bottom of the second, popped out to short in the fourth, and flied out to right in the sixth. Robinson -- batting seventh in the home club's lineup for the contest -- was hitting .244 for the season, with a pair of doubles, four home runs, and 16 RBIs. As he walked to the plate, the scorecards in the hands of the fans at Ebbets Field would have shown the Bums down by one run, but with a sliver of hope: Gil Hodges had opened the bottom of the ninth with a walk. Arroyo got the count to 1-2, and then, on his fourth offering, left something to Robinson's liking, and No. 42 for the Brooklyn Dodgers -- eight years and 52 days after he had made his Major League debut -- deposited the ball into the seats for a walk-off win, 5-4: the same final score seen on the Dodgers' scoreboard after Dee Gordon's walk-off hit on Jackie Robinson Day in 2012.
The Dodgers defeated the Padres, 5-4, on Dee Gordon's RBI single in the bottom of the ninth, and improved the Majors' best record to 9-1. The Dodgers have started 9-1 (or better) four other times: 1919, '40, '55 (10-0) and '81.
In the Dodgers' win, Matt Kemp drove in his Major League leading 16th run of the season (on a solo home run -- his sixth homer of the year), while Andre Ethier kept hold on the No. 2 spot in the Majors, with his 15th RBI.
Kemp's 16 RBIs through his team's first 10 games are the most in the Majors since Alex Rodriguez had 17 through the Yankees' first 10 contests in 2007. Kemp's 16 through the Dodgers' first 10 games are the most for the club since Roy Campanella had 17 in 1953.
Ethier's total of 15 RBIs through the Dodgers' first 10 games are tied with Kemp in 2010 and Eric Karros in 1995 for the third most for the franchise since '18.
Ethier and Kemp each have at least one RBI in eight of the Dodgers' first 10 games -- those eight games are tied with Ron Cey in 1977, Reggie Smith in '77, Eric Karros in '95 and Kemp in 2010 for the most for the franchise since 1918.
Kemp is the first Dodgers player with six home runs within the team's first 10 games since Wally Moon had six in 1961.
Active hitting streaks since the beginning of the season
Baltimore's Adam Jones went 1-for-4 and has hit safely in each of the Orioles' nine games this year.
Houston's J.D. Martinez went 2-for-6 and has a hit in all nine of the Astros ballgames.
Paul Konerko went 1-for-4 with a double and owns an eight-game hitting streak to open the White Sox season.
Josh Willingham went 1-for-4 for the Twins and has a hit in each of Minnesota's first nine games.
Pablo Sandoval went 1-for-3 and has hit safely in nine consecutive games since the start of the Giants' season.
Double the fun: Top doubles by players at Fenway Park since 1918
|Player||Total No. of doubles||No. of games with a double||No. of games with 2+ doubles
Cole Hamels fanned 10 for his 19th career game with double-digit strikeouts. Since his first season in 2006, Hamels' 19 games with 10-plus K's are the third most for any left-hander, behind Johan Santana's 26 games and CC Sabathia's 23.
Rick Porcello (7 2/3 IP, five hits, one run) became the first Tigers starter to pick up a win in 2012. Detroit's starters entered the game with an 0-3 record and a 3.83 ERA in 44 2/3 innings.
The Tribe got home runs from Travis Hafner, Shelley Duncan, Jason Kipnis and Casey Kotchman, and defeated the Royals, 13-7. Cleveland has homered in each of its first eight games -- the fourth time in the live ball era the club has done so. The other seasons: 1997 (a total of 16 home runs hit), 2002 (11) and '06 (12). The Indians have 15 home runs this season, tying them with the Rangers for the most in the American League.
Derek Jeter homered and doubled to assemble his 912th career multihit game. The performance pushed Jeter past Carl Yastrzemski into sole possession of eighth place for the most multihit games since 1918. Next up for Jeter is Willie Mays, with 922. The two hits gave Jeter 803 career extra-base hits, tying him with Joe Cronin for the third most for any player in history with at least two-thirds of his career games at shortstop. Cal Ripken Jr. leads, with 1,078, and he is followed by Honus Wagner, with 996.
Ivan Nova allowed four runs in six innings, but picked up the win and extended his winning streak to 14 straight decisions. Since 1920, Nova is the 39th pitcher to win at least 14 consecutive decisions, and the fourth Yankees pitcher to do it. The other Yankees pitchers are Roger Clemens (16 in row in 2001), Steve Sundra (14 straight in 1938-39) and Whitey Ford (14 in a row in '61).
Roger Schlueter is senior researcher for MLB Productions. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.