While recently blogging about a random Cubs pitcher, Pat Perry, I became immersed in articles from 1988 and 1989. This is the 30th anniversary of the 1989 Cubs “Boys of Zimmer,” a team that reached the postseason after a five year hiatus. This daily series will look back at Chicago Tribune articles and columns from 30 years ago, day by day.
March 7 is Joe Carter’s birthday. The Wichita State standout was selected second overall by the Chicago Cubs in the 1981 Major League Baseball draft, and made his professional debut just a few weeks later with the Midland Cubs.
The Cubs prospect was called up during the end of the 1983 season and appeared in 23 games. Carter didn’t stand out, compiling a slash line of .176/.176/.235, and went back to the Iowa Cubs for seasoning in 1984. On June 13, 1984, Joe Carter was shipped off to the Cleveland Indians with Mel Hall, Don Schulze, and Darryl Banks for Rick Sutcliffe, Ron Hassey, and George Frazier. That trade paid off well for both clubs.
Five years later, Jerome Holtzman wrote about the Indians superstar and reflected back on that 1984 trade.
The Chicago Tribune also featured a story about Cubs pitcher Calvin Schiraldi. Pitching was a common theme in the spring of 1989 with so many question marks surrounding the staff.
In a spring training game against the Angels, Jerome Walton stood out. It was a sign of things to come as the young outfielder would win the Rookie of the Year by season’s end.