1. Barry Bonds was a nightmare for Reds pitching, especially Tom Browning.
He’s the man you love to hate, and no one could have disliked Barry Bonds more than the Cincinnati Reds. Long before his assault upon just about every offensive category in the record books, the left-handed slugger was already pounding Cincinnati Reds pitching into submission.
First, the numbers. Over the past half-century, no player has more home runs, scored more runs, or received as many free passes against the Reds as Bonds. The mercurial left fielder walked 166 times, including a whopping 37 intentional passes, in just 177 games versus the Redlegs.
Long before he made his way to the Bay Area, Bonds was dismantling Reds pitching as a member of the Pittsburg Pirates. The Bucs first-round pick of the 1985 MLB Draft wasted little time introducing himself to Cincinnati. Between 1987-1992 Bonds would hit 17 homers while driving in 54 runs and stealing 21 bases in 23 attempts.
For his career, Bonds would slash a ridiculous .322/.471/.713 with an otherworldly 1.184 OPS against Reds hurlers. Routinely, Bonds victimized countless Cincinnati pitchers over the years and even though we could pick on poor Pete Schourek again we’ll instead turn our attention to Reds hero Tom Browning.
The Reds lefty had a ton of success in Cincinnati, but Barry Bonds refused to be rattled by Browning’s assortment of breaking pitches and quick pace on the mound. In 42 at-bats, Bonds would collect 14 hits, including five home runs and four doubles.
Bonds would also draw nearly twice as many walks (12) as strikeouts (7) against the southpaw. Compiling a slash line of .333/.481/.786 there’s little doubt who was the victor in this contest.
At some point, new villains will emerge and earn the scorn of Reds Country. A few names who may find themselves on the list of Cincinnati’s most wanted include Ian Happ, Bryce Harper, and Cody Bellinger. Don’t say you weren’t warned.