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This Day In MLB History: December 31


Roberto Clemente

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It was 43 years ago today that the baseball world was shocked by the sudden and tragic loss of future Hall of Famer and Pittsburgh Pirates great, Roberto Clemente.  The Puerto Rican native was in a cargo plane when it went down off the coast of his native land just moments after take-off. The plane was carrying relief supplies to the victims of an earthquake in Managua, Nicaragua.

Below are other memorable events that took place on December 31st.

1914 – Colonel Jacob Ruppert & Cap Huston purchase NY Yankees for $460,000.

1918 – Kid Gleason replaces Pants Rowland as White Sox manager.

1972 – Roberto Clemente dies in a plane crash off the coast of Puerto Rico.

1974 – NY Yankees sign Catfish Hunter for five years, for a record $3.75 million.

1991 – Daniel R McCarthy elected NY Yankees managing general partner.

1997 – Orlando Hernandez, half-brother of pitcher Livan Hernandez, defects from Cuba.


David is the Co-Founder and Executive Editor of Legends On Deck®, as well as a Co-Host on Legends On Deck Podcast. David was a Senior Editor for, and Contributor for that spanned from 2010 to 2014. David made his MLB Debut as a writer in June 2014, while covering the NY Mets at Citi Field, for David also coaches baseball for ages 13-15, a Babe Ruth League team in his local community. David's passion is coaching the game he loves to the future Legends of Tomorrow as well as making available a website that people can have fun sharing and reading. David is also passionate about his career as a Mortgage Loan Officer which allows him to help many families reach their dreams of owning a home. Connect with David via his Social Media pages as he loves to chat all about baseball.

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