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Cincinnati Reds shortstops: From greatness to mediocrity

CINCINNATI, UNITED STATES: The Cincinnati Reds' Barry Larkin dives for a ground ball on a base hit. AFP PHOTO/Mike SIMONS (Photo credit should read MIKE SIMONS/AFP via Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, UNITED STATES: The Cincinnati Reds' Barry Larkin dives for a ground ball on a base hit. AFP PHOTO/Mike SIMONS (Photo credit should read MIKE SIMONS/AFP via Getty Images)
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Barry Larkin is pictured during the ceremony in which the Reds retired Larkin's number before the start of the game.
CINCINNATI, OH – AUGUST 25: Barry Larkin is pictured during the ceremony in which the Reds retired Larkin’s number before the start of the St. Louis Cardinals game against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park on August 25, 2012 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Will the Reds ever have another shortstop as good as the Hall of Famer Barry Larkin?

The Cincinnati Reds are rumored to be in the market for a starting shortstop. If you come from the Big Red Machine Era, then you’ve probably asked yourself at some point in the last two decades: How did we go from 16 seasons of Dave Concepción and 16 seasons of Barry Larkin to these inconsistent shortstops spiraling in and out of a revolving door?

If you haven’t asked yourself that, then maybe you’ve joined the growing crowd of people gathered around the Reds Hot Stove wondering– what’s the front office going to do about the shortstop position this offseason? José García certainly needs more at-bats in the minor leagues, and the team’s best in-house option is Kyle Farmer.

Cincinnati used to have such a strong tradition of fantastic shortstops. They were captains, some of them superstars. They were the foundations of some of the best infields to play the game together.

In the 70 seasons from 1935 to 2005, the Reds only used 13 different players as their primary starting shortstop. In the 15 seasons since then, the Reds have used 11 different players as their starting shortstop with the twelfth on the way.

As the Reds search for the franchise’s 46th starting shortstop, let’s look back at some Cincinnati Reds history and hope for a return to these roots soon…

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