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Happy Reds birthday, Brandon Phillips!


June 28, 1981

I have never tried to hide that I am not a Brandon Phillips fan. I was ecstatic when the Reds finally worked out a deal to trade him before this year. I am glad he is playing well in Atlanta, and I wish him nothing but the best. Perhaps he can make one final All-Star appearance before he fades from our memories.

Happy Reds birthday, Rube Benton!


June 27, 1890

Rube Benton was probably not a pitcher that batters looked forward to facing. He twice led the National League in hit batsmen with 18 in 1912 and 19 in 1915. Benton played for Cincinnati from 1910 through 1915 and again from 1923 through 1925. He also pitched for the New York Giants.

Happy Reds birthday, Eddie Kasko!


June 27, 1931

Eddie Kasko was in the Opening Day starting lineup for the Reds from 1960-1962; in 1960 he started at second base, while in 1961 and 1962 he was positioned at shortstop. He was on the roster for the National League All-Stars in 1961, when two All-Star games were held each year. He did not play in the first contest, hosted in San Francisco, but collected a single off Don Schwall in the sixth inning in his only at-bat in the second game at Fenway Park in Boston.

Happy Reds birthday, Danny Breeden!


June 27, 1942

For a guy who only played 28 games in the bigs for two teams (the Reds and Cubs), Danny Breeden was involved in a lot of transactions. Initially signed as an amateur free agent by the Cardinals, Breeden was then drafted by the Cubs from the Cardinals, then purchased by the Cardinals from the Cubs, then traded to the Padres, then purchased by the Reds, then traded to the Cubs, then purchased by the Padres, and finally sent back to St. Louis.

Happy Reds birthday, Jeff Conine!


June 27, 1966

A two-time World Champion with the Marlins, Jeff Conine came to Cincinnati in 2007 from the Phillies in exchange for a couple of minor leaguers. He was traded to the Mets late in the season for another couple of minor leaguers, then retired when the year was over.

Happy Reds birthday, Jim Edmonds!


June 27, 1970

I was never a fan of Jim Edmonds. I saw him as a foolish pickup by Walt Jocketty in 2010, bringing his former Cardinals to Cincinnati, despite being washed up has-beens that really shouldn’t have been playing in the majors. In his 13 games with the Reds, he hit a whopping three solo home runs and batted .207.

Happy Reds birthday, Babe Herman!


June 26, 1903

If Babe Ruth was the Sultan of Swat, Babe Herman was the Tycoon of Triples. He hit 110 three-baggers in his career, including a league-leading 19 for the Reds in 1932. He was no slouch with the longball either, collecting 181 round trippers in 13 seasons. Herman appeared on the Hall of Fame ballot twelve times between 1942 and 1960, but never received more than 5.7% of the vote.

Happy Reds birthday, Clay Kirby!


June 25, 1948

How important is a good offense? Just ask Clay Kirby, who went 52-81 in five years with the Padres, only to see his fortunes reversed with Cincinnati’s supercharged Big Red Machine. In two seasons with the Reds, Kirby was 22-15. Then he was traded to Montreal, where he promptly reverted to his losing ways, going 1-8 before his release.

Happy Reds birthday, Bob Shirley!


June 25, 1954

Bob Shirley was a spot-starter for the 1982 Reds, starting 20 of the 41 games in which he appeared. 1982 was a dismal year for the Reds; after finishing 1981 with the best record in the majors (but missing the playoffs due to the inane split season rules), the team finished dead last in the NL West with 101 losses. Only the Twins lost more games.

Happy Reds birthday, Michael Tucker!


June 25, 1971

Michael Tucker was a first-round draft pick for the Royals in 1992, and is the only player (out of ten) from Longwood University to make the majors. Tucker roamed the outfield for Cincinnati from 1999-2001, hitting 33 home runs and driving in 110 while hitting .255.

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