Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Reviewing From Decades Past: 1960 - Season Recap

The Cubs were glad to be out of the '50's, which up to that point was the only decade in their history when they didn't win a pennant. Things had to get better, right? Well, you know what the answer is, don't you! The 1960 Cubs finished 60-94, 35 games out of first and only one game above the NL cellar.

The team also made one of the strangest trades in MLB history during the season.

Charlie Grimm started the season as manager. This was his third go-around as Cubs skipper. He won pennants in each of his previous stints, but not this time. He lasted as the manager only 17 games. WIth a record of 6-11 he was the WGN radio booth in exchange for radio color man Lou Boudreau. Yep, the manager and the color man switched spots. That is classic Cubs. The Good Kid couldn't do much better, guiding the team to a 54-83 record. It was this team's performance that led owner PK Wrigley to go to the College of Coaches the next season. Boudreau went back to the radio booth, where he remained for more than 20 more years.

On the field, the bright spots were few. Shortstop Ernie Banks continued his excellence, smashing 41 home runs and driving in 117 runs. But otherwise, the team finished near the bottom in all major offensive categories. Ernie also set the major league record for most career homers by a shortstop when he hit his 269th. He also led NL shortstops in fielding. Ernie was the man!

A 20 year old rookie took over third base duty and did a decent job, and Ron Santo would stay put there for more than a decade.

The pitching highlight of the season came on May 15, when Don Cardwell pitched a no-hitter in his first appearance in a Cubs uniform. Glen Hobbie led the team with 16 wins, but he also had 20 losses.

This is the cover of the 1960 Cubs scorecard. The team drew only 809, 770 fans, seventh out of eight teams in the league, making this scorecard tough to find in decent shape.

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