1975: The Battle for 1,000,000

May 4, 1975

In the second inning of the Twins game against the Kansas City Royals, Rod Carew stood on third base with a very good chance to make history.

Major League Baseball had been hyping its one millionth run scored for quite some time. The first run had been scored on April 22, 1876 by Wes Fisler of the Philadelphia Nationals. Some 99 years, 12 days later, Claudell Washington scored run number 999,999 and every game in progress was interrupted with the announcement that the next run would be the millionth. Fans and players alike eagerly anticipated the moment, and just minutes after the announcement Rod Carew had the first good chance to score the anticipated run.

With nobody out Carew doubled scoring Dan Ford from first base (presumably run number 999,998). Sergio Ferrer singled, sending Carew to third base, just 90 feet from home with nobody out.

The next batter, Steve Brye, hit a fly ball to right field. Carew tagged up, and attempted to score. Right fielder Al Cowens had other ideas, and gunned Carew out at home on a 9-2 scoring play. It was reported that not only was Carew thrown out, but he hurt his leg in the process. The injury was not serious, however, and Carew stayed in the game.

The staff at a computer center in Manhattan looked on as the events of the next few minutes unfolded. At approximately 3:32 EDT, Cincinnati short stop Dave Concepcion hit a home run, and began sprinting around the bases to try and score the historic run. At about the same time in San Francisco, Milt May of the Houston Astros hit a three-run homer, the lead run represented by Bob Watson who was on second base.

It was determined by the computer center that Watson touched home at 3:32 and 30 seconds, just as Concepcion was racing around third base. In honor of the occasion, Watson was presented with a watch.

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2 Responses to 1975: The Battle for 1,000,000

  1. Beau says:

    So…when I’m about 85 years old I may see the two millionth?

  2. […] On May 4, 1975, Bob Watson scored Major League Baseball’s one-millionth run. One of my childhood heroes, Claudell Washington, had scored the 999,999th run the night before. Do you know how close Hall of Famer Rod Carew was to being credited with that one-millionth run (and getting a watch!)? Check out Coffeyville Whirlwind to find out. […]

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