It’s likely on this day 48 years ago, there wasn’t much fanfare for a seemingly minor vote taken by owners of American League baseball teams.
But it led to, arguably, the most debated position in any sport.
On Jan. 11, 1973, owners of American League clubs, by an 8-4 margin, voted to adopt the designated hitter.
The rationale was to try and combat the dominance of pitchers in that era -- and to pump a little more offense into the game by taking out the weakest hitter in a lineup, the pitcher.
In what was originally supposed to be a three-year trial run, the DH stuck around for good after the American League significantly increased its batting average in those years.
The National League never followed suit in adopting the DH, which has led to nearly 50 years of debate for many who wonder why the two leagues can’t play under the same rules.
Proponents of the DH prefer to see better hitters in the lineup and point to the players who have had Hall of Fame careers as a result of being exclusively a DH.
Those against the DH feel pitchers hitting is a more pure form of the game and forces managers to make more strategic decisions during the course of a game.
Regardless of what side you fall on, it’s pretty indisputable that the DH is often a hot-button topic, and that the position has produced some of the greatest players.
Last year, it was instituted in the National League for the first time, but only due to the shortened-season caused by the pandemic. It’s not expected to be a permanent move.
So, how well do you know the history of the DH?
Take this quiz and try to bat 1.000.
Unlike in real-life baseball, going 3 out of 10 won’t make you a Hall of Famer.