When the Reds retired Johnny Bench’s uniform No. 5, it was not the first time they had done so. In 1940, seven years before Bench was born, Cincinnati retired No. 5 in honor of another catcher, Willard Hershberger, who had died that year. But the team reactivated the number by 1942, and gave it to Bench a quarter-century later.
Blame Chad for creating this mess.
Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.
You can email Chad at firstname.lastname@example.org.