2005 in Baseball - Events - January–March

January–March

  • January 3 - Wade Boggs, a five-time batting champion, and Ryne Sandberg, a nine-time Gold Glove winner at second base, are elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame. Boggs receives 474 votes, or 91.9 percent of the 516 ballots cast. Sandberg receives 393 votes, six more than the needed number. Relief pitchers Bruce Sutter (66.7 percent) and Rich "Goose" Gossage (55.2), and outfielders Jim Rice (59.5) and Andre Dawson (52.3), are the only other players to be named on at least half of the ballots cast.
  • January 21 - Roger Clemens and the Houston Astros agree to an $18 million, one-year contract. Clemens, a seven-time Cy Young Award winner, agrees to a deal that makes him the highest-paid pitcher for the fifth time, following deals with the Boston Red Sox in 1989 ($2.5 million) and 1991 ($5.38 million); with the Toronto Blue Jays before the 1997 season, and with the New York Yankees in 2000 ($15.45 million).
  • February 2 - The trade that sent Sammy Sosa to the Baltimore Orioles from the Chicago Cubs is finalized after commissioner Bud Selig approves the deal and the slugger passes his physical. Chicago receives second baseman Jerry Hairston, Jr. and two minor leaguers, then signs Jeromy Burnitz as a free agent to replace Sosa in right field.
  • February 6 - At Mazatlán, Mexico, Francisco Campos turns in another brilliant outing, and Mexican champion Venados de Mazatlán (Mazatlán Deers) holds on in the final game, edging the Dominican Republic 4-3 to win the 56th Caribbean World Series. The title is just Mexico's fifth since joining the competition in 1970, the second in the last four years, but its first since hosting the series. Campos allows just three hits - two infield hits and a bunt single - and a run over his first eight innings of work, striking out 11. Previously, Campos handcuffed the Venezuelan champion Tigres de Aragua (Aragua Tigers) 4-0 in the series opener. He allowed just three hits over eight innings and struck out 10. Campos is voted the Series MVP.
  • February 16 - The players' union signs an agreement calling for international drug-testing rules during a 16-team World Cup tournament (eventually called the World Baseball Classic) during 2006 spring training. Each team will select a provisional roster of 60 players, 45 days before the start of the tournament, and players will be covered by the drug-testing rules until the end of the competition. The deal, signed by the union, the commissioner's office and the International Baseball Federation, states that IBAF rules will cover the frequency of testing before and during the tournament, the list of prohibited substances, the procedures for taking samples and the laboratories used. More substances are banned by the IBAF than by the major leagues.
  • March 2 - Thirty-two years after his death, Jackie Robinson receives the Congressional Gold Medal in the Capitol Rotunda, the highest honor Congress can bestow. The medal is accepted by Rachel Robinson, his widow. Baseball is represented in a way by former Texas Rangers executive George W. Bush. Robinson joins Roberto Clemente, Joe Louis and Jesse Owens as the only athletes among about 300 Gold Medal recipients. Following the ceremony, the Boston Red Sox are honored at the White House for winning the 2004 World Series.
  • March 17 - Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa, Rafael Palmeiro and Jose Canseco appeared before the House Government Reform Committee to discuss the topic of performance enhancing drugs in Major League Baseball. McGwire and Palmeiro were named as steroid users in Canseco's book, Juiced. McGwire declined to answer questions under oath when he appeared before the House Government Reform Committee. Sosa and Palmeiro both denied under oath ever having used PEDs, whereas McGwire never gave a committed answer, simply stating, "I'm not here to talk about the past. I'm here to be positive about this subject", repeatedly.

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