Todd Frazier was a .280 hitter with 75 career minor league home runs in the Cincinnati Reds’ farm system. This prompted both Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus to rank him as a top 100 prospect before the 2009 and 2010 seasons. John Sickels of SB Nation ranked him as the second best prospect in the Reds’ system behind Yonder Alonso in ’09 and Aroldis Chapman in ’10.
He could hit, but questions about his defense as he earned sporadic playing time at each infield position and left field. He played each of those five positions in his first MLB season as a 25 year old in 2011, but found himself primarily at third base — a spot he now calls home.
Retaining rookie status for the 2012 season, Frazier broke out with 19 home runs, 67 RBIs and a .273 AVG as he finished third in the NL Rookie of the Year voting behind Bryce Harper and Wade Miley. He struggled in his sophomore campaign hitting at just a .234 clip, posting another 19 home runs, but in 150 games.
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But in 2014 and 2015, FlavaFraz — a name he became known as as a play off of his Twitter handle — became a fan-favorite and an established All-Star at the hot corner. In 2014 Frazier hit 29 home runs, stole 20 bases, slashed .273/.336/.459 and made his first All-Star game. The ToddFather followed himself up last season by smashing a career-best 35 home runs, 43 doubles, 89 RBIs and sported a .498 SLG. He made his second All-Star appearance and won the Home Run Derby in storybook fashion at Great American Ball Park.
An offseason trade to the Chicago White Sox ended Frazier’s five-year run with the Reds and nine-year run with the organization, but if Frazier had his way, he wouldn’t have left — and if the Reds weren’t submerged in rebuild mode, it’s safe to assume Frazier would have gotten his wish.
A third round pick of the Cincinnati Reds in 1994, Aaron Boone turned himself into a top 100 prospect and eventually an All-Star. Boone debuted with the Reds in 1997, lost his rookie status the following year and became the starter at third base the year after that. He hit .280 with 14 home runs and 17 RBIs in that 1999 season next to Barry Larkin in the infield. Boone also sported a 1.18 clutch rating in ’99, a mark good for ninth best in all of Major League Baseball.
Three years later Boone played in all 162 games and posted career-highs of 26 home runs and 32 stolen bases. He made his first and only All-Star appearance the following season with another 20-20 year with 24 HR, 23 SB, 96 RBIs and a .267 AVG. Boone did split the season with the New York Yankees following a midseason trade — of which devastated him after the firing if his father Bob Boone as the manager — but tallied 18 of his home runs and 15 of his stolen bases with Cincinnati.
At the end of the 2002 season, Boone swatted what would be the final home run in Riverfront Stadium. In his first year on the Hall of Fame ballot in 2015, Boone garnered just two votes (0.4 percent) ending his ballot eligibility.
Boone finished with 86 home runs, 83 stolen bases and 141 doubles in his Reds career.
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— Blog Red Machine (@blogredmachine) April 28, 2016