This Week In Sports History – September 17,2019

Sourced: E. Ramos

September 17 Reggie Jackson hits 500th home run

On Sept. 17, 1984, Reggie Jackson, fivetime baseball World Series champion and two time World Series MVP, became the 13th player in Major League Baseball (MLB) to hit 500 home runs. At the end of his career, he had hit a total of 563 home runs, placing him sixth highest amongst MLB players. Jackson also became the first player in history to hit 100 home runs for three teams, a feat that he accomplished with the Athletics, Yankees and Angels.

September 18 Baseball adopts first baseman rule

On Sept. 18, 1848, the rule requiring first basemen to tag the runner for an out was overruled and replaced by a rule that allowed the base to be tagged instead of the runner. This rule shaped the rules of baseball we know today.

Sept. 20 Billie Jean King beats Bobby Riggs

The match between Bobby Riggs and Billie Jean King was nicknamed the “Battle of the Sexes,” after Billie Jean King, a woman, gender equality advocate and tennis player, accepted a challenge to play a match against Riggs, the number one men’s tennis player in the US at the time. The match gained worldwide attention, drawing in 50 million US viewers and an estimated 90 million worldwide. King beat Riggs in straight sets, 6–4, 6–3, 6–3, and won the winner-take-all prize of $100,000. However,the match was about more than the money. According billiejeanking.com, Billie Jean’s victory, together with the passage of Title IX, is often credited with both igniting a boom in women’s sports participation and empowering women to advocate for equal pay in all sectors of the workforce.

Sept. 23 Gary Muhrcke wins first NY Marathon

The first New York Marathon was organized in 1970 with courses through the five boroughs of New York City. The marathon is now the largest in the world, boasting a massive 52,000 finishers in 2018. However, in 1970, when it first began, only 127 runners participated. On Sept. 23, Gary Muhrcke, a 30‐year‐old fireman running for the Millrose Athletic Association, was the first to cross the finish line in Central Park with a time of 2 hours 31 minutes and 38.2 seconds.

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