I’ve been doing a series of historical Cubs sleuthing photos, having located a treasure trove of them via Getty Images.
This one’s a bit different, because the caption given with this photo gives away the date:
Roberto Clemente #21 of the Pittsburgh Pirates steps into the batters box as third baseman Ron Santo #10 and catcher El Tappe #2 of the Chicago Cubs get ready to defend during an MLB game on June 26, 1960 at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
The reason I found this photo interesting is that Sunday, June 26, 1960 was the day Ron Santo made his major-league debut.
On that afternoon, the Cubs and Pirates played a doubleheader at Forbes Field. The Cubs swept it, interestingly, in a year that would end up with the Pirates World Series champions and the Cubs in seventh place at 60-94. The sweep broke a nine-game losing streak.
Santo would have been just another rookie breaking into the game at that time; no one likely would have thought, on that day, that he’d have a Hall of Fame career and become beloved to Cubs fans as a radio broadcaster. He did have a great debut day, though, going 3-for-7 with a double and five RBI in the twin bill.
In the photo, Santo is shown taking his position at third base. We are looking at the second game of the doubleheader, and the Pirates are batting in the bottom…