I know . . . I know . . . most of you dont even know who Dale Long is and could care less that today, February 6, 2009 would have been his 83rd birthday (he died in 1991). Today is also Babe Ruth's birthday (he passed on in 1948) and is certainly more "popular". "Celebrating" somebodies birthday when they have passed away is more of celebrating and remembering their life . . . so today is a day to remember Dale Long, a Chicago Cub for the better part of three years (1957-59).
The year prior to coming to the Cubs, 1956, Long posted career highs in HR's and RBI's (27 and 91), was elected to his only all-star game and put his name in the record books for this feat: between May 19 and May 28 Long hit a homerun in eight consecutive games. Since then this has been matched yet never broken, twice Don Mattingly (1987) and Ken Griffey Jr (1993); however both were in the American League.
Long was traded to the Cubs in 1957 and hit 55 home runs in his two plus years at Wrigley. In 1959, Long put himself in the record books again by tying another home run record, hitting back to back pitch hit homeruns.
In his ten year career, Long hit 132 HR's, had 467 RBI's and hit .267 in just over 1000 games.
So . . . Happy Birthday Dale Long . . . you were a powerful force in the NL and for the Cubs and deserve to be remembered.
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