Unlikely hero from Reds' 2023 season signs minor-league deal with Diamondbacks

Reds fans will never forget the Ricky Karcher Game.
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Ricky Karcher
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Ricky Karcher / Jamie Squire/GettyImages

In 40 years, when your grandchildren ask you who Ricky Karcher was, you will undoubtedly have fond memories of watching the Cincinnati Reds play the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium on June 12, 2023.

Unfortunately, the Legend of Ricky Karcher will become little more than just a whisper after the right-hander agreed to a minor-league deal with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Karcher made just one appearance for the Reds in 2023, but it's a game that most of the Cincinnati faithful will never forget.

Former Reds RHP Ricky Karcher signs minor-league deal with Diamondbacks

Most Cincinnati Reds fans will remember that night in Kansas City as the Ricky Karcher Game. An unknown, hard-throwing rookie reliever emerged from the dugout with a one-run lead and a chance to extend the Reds winning streak to three games.

Karcher was wild from the first pitch he threw, and on more than one occasion, veteran catcher Curt Casali had to quickly emerge from his crouch in order to keep the ball from sailing to the backstop. But in the end, Karcher got the job done.

Karcher entered in the 10th inning with the Reds up 5-4. With MLB's ghost runner on second base, Karcher already had the tying run in scoring position.

Of Karcher's 21 pitches thrown in that inning, 12 were balls. Karcher walked a batter, didn't record a single strikeout, and yet got out of the inning unscatched as Cincnnati emerged with a one-run victory.

After the game, Ricky Karcher gave one of the most memorable post-game interviews with Bally Sports Ohio broadcaster Jim Day while all his teammates looked on from the dugout. Karcher was optioned back to Triple-A Louisville the following day.

Karcher made 57 appearances for the Louisville Bats in 2023 while posting a 4.77 ERA. However, the right-hander ended his minor league season with more walks (72) than strikeouts (70). Cincinnati outrighted Karcher after the season, and the erractic hurler chose free agency.

For Ricky Karcher's sake, hopefully he's able to gain some control of his fastball during the offseason and make a run at the D-backs 2024 Opening Day roster.