Cincinnati Reds say good-bye to former outfielder Bob Borkowski

(Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images) /

Former Cincinnati Reds outfielder Bob Borkowski passed away at the age of 91.

Bob Borkowski may not have been the most well known player on the Cincinnati Reds.  He only played six MLB seasons.  Borkowski was born in Dayton, Ohio, but came up with the Chicago Cubs.  

He played for the Cubs in 1950 and 1951.  His best season, though, was with the Reds in 1953.  He batted .269 with an OBP of .328 over 94 games.

During the 1955 season, the Reds traded Borkowski to the Brooklyn Dodgers.  That Brooklyn team won the championship in 1955.  Borkowski retired at the end of the 1958 season.

Although Borkowski had a relatively short MLB career, his professional career was longer than that.  The Cubs signed him in 1946.  They signed him as a pitcher.

He went 18-9 during his first professional season with an ERA of 3.46.  He also played outfield.  After batting .384 in 104 games, Borkowski became a full-time outfielder for the remainder of his career.

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In 1949 Borkowski won the Triple-A batting championship.  He batted .376 that season.  As a rookie for the Cubs in 1950 he hit .273 and slugged .379 in 85 games.

Over his MLB career, Borkowski hit .251 over 470 career games.  He hit 16 home runs, while driving in 112.  His last regular season appearance was July 10, 1955.

More from Reds News

The Cincinnati Reds season was known for more than Bob Borkowski’s career season.

Prior to the 1953 season, the Reds changed their name from that of the Redlegs.  It was in response to Redlegs being seen as a communist backed name.  Reds somehow was acceptable.

Borkowski didn’t have much of a chance to stick with the Reds.  One of the more famous trades occurred prior to the 1953 season.   The Reds traded for Gus Bell, who was one of the all-time greats.

The Dodgers were the cream of the crop in the National League.  The Reds, meanwhile, ended up going 68-86.  That was good for sixth in the eight team league.

Borkowski was the fourth outfielder for the Reds that season.  They had quite a collection.  In addition to Borkowski and Bell, Jim Greengrass and Willard Marshall were also on this team.

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The real story here is that Borkowski was born, raised, and passed away in Dayton, Ohio, where the Reds currently have a minor league team.  It’s all to easy to forget that while baseball players can be transient during their careers, many have strong roots in their home towns.  Borkowski was another of these men.