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MAY 2 (1939) - Gehrig*
By Bill Grimes
May 2, 2007 - 9:28 AM

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A sad ending to a remarkable record

DETROIT , MICHIGAN , MAY 2, 1939 Today in baseball the Yankees crushed the Tigers 22 to 2. But the game was more noteworthy for who didn’t play; Lou Gehrig . The Iron horse first baseman voluntarily decided for the good of the team he couldn’t play. It was the first time he was not in the lineup in 2,130 games. Gehrig’s record would stand until Cal Ripken broke it in 1995.

Ludwig Heinrich Gehrig was born in New York City in 1903. His name was Americanized to Henry Louis Gehrig. He went to Columbia University in New York on a football scholarship, but also played baseball.

As legend has it, the Yankees offered Gehrig to the Boston Red Sox early in his career for a starting pitcher as kind of re-payment for the Babe Ruth deal a few years earlier. The Red Sox didn’t want Gehrig.

The reason Gehrig kept himself out of the lineup, of course, was because Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), otherwise known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, had attacked his body. He was too weak to play baseball. Gehrig would hang on for two more years before passing away in 1941.

Oh, by the way, the winning pitcher May 2, 1939 in Detroit was Red Ruffing for the Yankees. The loser was Detroit's Vern Kennedy.

Read on:
http://www.alsa.org/
http://www.lougehrig.com/
http://www.todayinbaseballhistory.com/cgi-bin/today/today2S.pl

 
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