Did you know that five Columbia alumni have been inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame?
With another spring training in the books and baseball season back in the swing of things, we take a look back at the Columbia greats who made it all the way to Cooperstown.
Read on for even more hard-hitting trivia:
- Most are familiar with the story of Yankee great Lou Gehrig, who played baseball at Columbia from 1921 to 1923. Gehrig established numerous records, including 23 grand slams, (a number only recently surpassed by fellow Yankee Alex Rodriguez), and his 2,130 consecutive games played streak, a record that stood for more than 50 years and earned him the nickname the Iron Horse.
- More astute Columbia trivia buffs would know that second baseman Eddie Collins (Columbia College 1907), part of the famous Philadelphia Athletics “$100,000 infield” also represents the Lions in the Hall of Fame. Collins had more than 3,000 hits in 25 seasons—a record among twentieth century position players according to the Baseball Hall of Fame. When Collins played his first games with the Athletics, he used the surname Sullivan to maintain his eligibility for Columbia’s football team, of which he was the quarterback.
- True masters would note that John Montgomery Ward, one of the most colorful and influential players of the nineteenth century, graduated from Columbia with a Bachelor of Laws (1885) and a Bachelor of Philosophy (1886), while playing for the New York Giants. Ward won more than 150 games as a pitcher, including the second perfect game in baseball history. After injuring his arm, he became an infielder, and as such, he recorded more than 2,000 hits. Ward was also an early labor organizer in baseball.
- In addition, sportswriter Leonard Koppett (Columbia College 1944) is also in the Hall of Fame, and Dodgers lefty ace Sandy Koufax attended Columbia’s School of General Studies in 1955, the same year his Brooklyn Dodgers won the World Series.
|Photo: Baseball Hall of Fame|
UPCOMING EVENT: CAA AT THE BALLPARK
June 17: Queens, NY
Meet the Mets! (and some fellow Columbians) at a recent alumni outing at Citi Field. Recent alumni get an exclusive deal on a game ticket and pre-game party. See you at the game.