In Memoriam: 2012

The Reds family has seen a few within its “family” pass on during 2012. I’ve read and heard the following many a time: Once a Red, always a Red.

While we have the holidays to spend together as family, let’s not forget those that have served the Reds in some capacity. If I am leaving anyone out, please feel free to leave me a note in the comments and I will add to this.

Ryan Freel, 3B/OF

Freel is the most recent. His untimely death was certainly a shock to all Reds fans and the Reds family. He will be known as a guy who left it all out on the field, game in, game out. His constant hustle and scrappy nature led to Freel becoming a fan favorite. In some aspects, he sort of reminded me of Pete Rose.

Back in 2005, Freel authored a piece (along with Dennis Tuttle) on ESPN.com titled “I’ll Play Anywhere, Anytime”. All you had to do was read the first couple of lines from that article, and you became a Freel fan.

Guys like me, Scott Podsednik and David Eckstein never take one game for granted. We always feel like we have to do something extra to belong.

Freel would actual put that title to use. During his days in a Reds uniform, he would play five different positions: second base, third base and all three outfield spots.

With his death as well as those of other former athletes who take their own lives: Are sports teams and leagues doing enough in the way of studies on concussions?

Freel’s Reds career…

Year G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2003 43 153 137 23 39 6 1 4 12 9 4 9 13 .285 .344 .431 .775
2004 143 592 505 74 140 21 8 3 28 37 10 67 88 .277 .375 .368 .743
2005 103 432 369 69 100 19 3 4 21 36 10 51 59 .271 .371 .371 .743
2006 132 523 454 67 123 30 2 8 27 37 11 57 98 .271 .363 .399 .762
2007 75 304 277 44 68 13 3 3 16 15 8 18 47 .245 .308 .347 .655
2008 48 143 131 17 39 8 0 0 10 6 4 8 18 .298 .340 .359 .699
CIN (6 yrs) 544 2147 1873 294 509 97 17 22 114 140 47 210 323 .272 .357 .377 .734
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/23/2012.

Frank Pastore, P

Pastore was involved in a motorcycle crash which would lead to his life being taken. After his departure from baseball, Pastore would go back to school and earn a degree in theology and political science. He became an author and later, would join KKLA to became one of America’s most listened to Christian radio talk show hosts.

Kind of eerie listening to this, but Pastore hinted at something from this broadcast (via KKLA’s website)

Pastore’s numbers as a Red…

Year W L ERA G GS CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1979 6 7 4.25 30 9 2 1 4 95.1 102 47 45 8 23 63 1.311
1980 13 7 3.27 27 27 9 2 0 184.2 161 72 67 13 42 110 1.099
1981 4 9 4.02 22 22 2 1 0 132.0 125 73 59 11 35 81 1.212
1982 8 13 3.97 31 29 3 2 0 188.1 210 86 83 13 57 94 1.418
1983 9 12 4.88 36 29 4 1 0 184.1 207 104 100 20 64 93 1.470
1984 3 8 6.50 24 16 1 0 0 98.1 110 74 71 10 40 53 1.525
1985 2 1 3.83 17 6 1 0 0 54.0 60 23 23 1 16 29 1.407
CIN (7 yrs) 45 57 4.30 187 138 22 7 4 937.0 975 479 448 76 277 523 1.336
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/23/2012.

Pedro Borbon, P

Cancer eventually took its toll on Borbon. He was known for three things: two he had everything to do with, the other, not so much. The first involved a scene at Shea Stadium, former home of the New York Mets. The game is more noted for the scuffle between Pete Rose and Bud Harrelson. Borbon would add a little to the fray as he and Buzz Capra would get into a fight. After he air had settled, Borbon places a cap on his head. IT wasn’t his and it was a Mets cap. When Borbon realized the error, he ripped the cap apart…with his teeth.

Another event with Borbon may be more lore. It has been said that upon hearing the Reds had traded him, he placed a voodoo curse upon the organization. Later, Borbon confessed it was all a tale and nothing more.

But those outside of Cincinnati hear “Pedro Borbon” and might think of this…

Here’s what Borbon posted in a Reds uni…

Year W L ERA G SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1970 0 2 6.75 12 0 17.1 21 15 13 2 6 6 1.558
1971 0 0 4.15 3 0 4.1 3 3 2 1 1 4 0.923
1972 8 3 3.17 62 11 122.0 115 45 43 5 32 48 1.205
1973 11 4 2.16 80 14 121.0 137 33 29 4 35 60 1.421
1974 10 7 3.24 73 14 139.0 133 54 50 11 32 53 1.187
1975 9 5 2.95 67 5 125.0 145 47 41 6 21 29 1.328
1976 4 3 3.35 69 8 121.0 135 49 45 4 31 53 1.372
1977 10 5 3.19 73 18 127.0 131 48 45 7 24 48 1.220
1978 8 2 4.98 62 4 99.1 102 56 55 6 27 35 1.299
1979 2 2 3.43 30 2 44.2 48 17 17 2 8 23 1.254
CIN (10 yrs) 62 33 3.32 531 76 920.2 970 367 340 48 217 359 1.289
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/23/2012.

Jerry Lynch, left fielder

Lynch played for the Reds for six-plus seasons. He was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates in May of 1963. During his Reds career, Lynch finished 22nd in the 1961 MVP vote. In that season, he complied a triple slash of .315/.407/.624 with 13 HR and 50 RBI. Lynch was inducted into the Reds Hall of Fame in 1988.

Year G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
1957 67 131 124 11 32 4 1 4 13 0 0 6 18 .258 .290 .403 .693
1958 122 443 420 58 131 20 5 16 68 1 4 18 54 .312 .338 .498 .835
1959 117 415 379 49 102 16 3 17 58 2 0 29 50 .269 .320 .462 .782
1960 102 178 159 23 46 8 2 6 27 0 0 16 25 .289 .356 .478 .834
1961 96 210 181 33 57 13 2 13 50 2 2 27 25 .315 .407 .624 1.031
1962 114 316 288 41 81 15 4 12 57 3 3 24 38 .281 .335 .486 .822
1963 22 34 32 5 8 3 0 2 9 0 0 1 5 .250 .294 .531 .825
CIN (7 yrs) 640 1727 1583 220 457 79 17 70 282 8 9 121 215 .289 .339 .493 .832

Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/30/2012.

Champ Summers, outfielder and first baseman

Summers played for the Reds from 1977-1979. He came to the Reds in a trade from the Chicago Cubs. During his time in a Reds uniform, Summers played in 99 games.

Jimmy Stewart, utility

I mean no disrespect when I refer to Stewart as a utility player. During his days as a Red from 1969-1971, Stewart played every defensive position with the exception of pitcher. He even played catcher for two-thirds of an inning in 1970.

George Strike, owner

Strike was known as first and foremost, a fan, but he made his mark in Cincinnati as a local business titan (as stated by Cliff Peale of Cincinnati.com). Strike was a member of the group led by Carl Lindner which bought the Reds from Marge Schott. Strike was also a former UC Board Chair also served on the University Hospital board, the old Health Alliance board, and was the chairman of the board of UC Health. Less than three weeks before his passing, Strike was presented with President’s Award for Excellence from then-interim president of UC Santa Ono.

Mrs. Louise Nippert, owner

Nippert and her husband Louis were owners of the Reds during the days of the Big Red Machine. They purchased majority control of the team in 1973, but Nippert contributed so much more than merely being an owner. She was also highly involved within Cincinnati’s art scene and donated $85 million to maintain the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra.

The Nipperts sold their majority share in 1981, but still maintained at least a minority stake in the team until Mrs. Nippert left us at the age of 100.

Topics: Cincinnati Reds

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