July 7, 1914: The Reds pass on George Herman “Babe” Ruth. Under and agreement with the Baltimore club of the International League, the Reds had the right to choose any two players off the roster of this minor league club. Garry Herrmann sent Harry Stevens to select the playeres, but Stevens was just a crony of Reds management and knew little about scouting players. Stevens overlooked Ruth, a 19 year old pitcher, who could also hit. the Reds choose, instead, OF George Twombly and SS Claude Derrick. The Red Sox signed Ruth almost immediately; he debuted on July 11th.
Derrick batted only 6 times for the Reds before he was shuffled to the Cubs in a trade for first baseman Fritz Mollwitz, who was borth in Koburg, Germany and hit only .201 in his two seasons in Cincinnati. Twombly batted .222 in 311 ABs wit hte Reds over 3 seasons and somehow managed to collect 6 triples without hitting a double or home run.
All “Reds trivia” posts come from Greg Rhodes and John Snyder’s fabulous book, “Redleg Journal” (see link for purchasing) and are used with Greg’s permission.
Thanks again to Greg Rhodes for permission to use his material.