Today In Brewer History: Meet the Indians

David Maxwell

These two franchises met for the first time 44 years ago today.

On this day in 1969 the Indians beat the Brewers 7-1 at Cleveland Stadium. Dick Ellsworth pitched a complete game four-hitter for the win, and future Brewer Jose Cardenal went 2-for-5 with a triple for the Indians. The game was the first-ever meeting between these two franchises.

At the time the Pilots were members of the AL West, but in 1972 the Brewers joined the Indians in the Eastern division and started 26 years as rivals, including four seasons in the AL Central before the Brewers' move to the NL. The Brewers lead the all-time series 205-201, going 193-194 when both teams were still in the AL and 12-7 in interleague play. Here are some highlights from their shared history:

  • They've played a pair of 17 inning games, one in 1973 and one in 1979. The Brewers won both.
  • The Brewers set a franchise record by homering seven times in a game against the Indians on April 29, 1980. The Indians tied their record by homering eight times against the Crew in 1997.
  • Cecil Cooper has 20 career home runs as a Brewer against the Indians, leading all players. Orel Hershiser was the Brewers' favorite Indian target, surrendering 13 long balls.
  • Andre Thornton leads all Indians with 31 career home runs against the Brewers, representing a full 12% of his career total. Mike Caldwell and Jim Slaton each gave up 18 homers to Cleveland batters.

These two teams last met in interleague play in 2009, when the Brewers swept a three-game set. They're not scheduled to meet in 2013.

With help from Brewerfan.net and the B-Ref Play Index, happy birthday today to:

Today is also the second anniversary of Corey Hart tying a franchise record by driving in seven runs in the Brewers' 11-3 win over the Nationals. We covered that event in this space last year.

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