This week’s respondents are Nick Carrington, Chad Dotson, Chris Garber, Bill Lack and Steve Mancuso.


Our Daily Reds Obsession: What is your best Reds memory ever?

Nick: Probably Jay Bruce’s Clinchmas home run. I watch it every year. It had been so long since the Reds had reached the postseason. My father would talk about the Big Red Machine as if they were a part of him. Those were his teams, they represented a significant time-period of his life because he came of age during their greatness. I had no such team during my middle, high school, or college years and couldn’t wait to see the Reds in the playoffs. The 2010 Reds were young, exciting, and really good. That team was special, and when Bruce hit that home run, it relieved years of frustration cause by a struggling franchise that I loved.

Chad: I guess the easy choice is the 1990 World Series championship, since that may be the only Reds championship I’ll ever see in my lifetime. I don’t think I’ll ever forget the emotion that washed over Teenage Chad when that ball settled into Todd Benzinger’s glove to finish off Game 4 of the 1990 Series. It was an exciting moment, and I’m guessing many Reds fans of a certain vintage would pick that moment as their best Reds memory ever.

But I’m going in a different direction. I was sitting in my parents’ living room in October 1990, watching the game on television. On September 28, 2010, however, I was sitting in the moon deck at Great American Ball Park when I watched Jay Bruce hit a walk-off home run against the Houston Astros to clinch the National League Central Division title. From the first pitch of that night until the last, I’ve never been in a baseball stadium with more energy, or that was more alive than GABP on that evening. Best Reds memory ever.

Chris: Friday, October 5, 1990.  Game 2 of the NLCS. I was a senior in high school, and for some reason we had the day off school. Only one kid in my school had scored playoff tickets, but during Game One, the Reds announced that they would be putting 500 tickets on sale at 8:00 AM Friday. The official story was that the tickets had been returned by other NL teams’ allotment; the rumor was that Marge Schott had sandbagged a few seats “to screw the scalpers.”

My uncle (just nine years older and more of a big brother) called — he and his girlfriend were going to head down and take a chance at getting tickets, and invited me to tag along. Presumably this was a chance at “top six” tickets, but that was good enough. We left at dawn, and headed down to the ticket booth on Riverfront Stadium’s vast concrete plaza — we were about tenth in line. After an hour or so, the booth opened and we quickly moved to the window. There was no selecting — they just passed three tickets across and demanded $75.00 (total). It wasn’t until we walked away that we noticed the tickets were blue — and the seats were nine rows back, from the third base bag.

We killed six hours in downtown Cincinnati in Ferris Bueller style. We wanted the downtown streets and skywalks, finding our way to the Contemporary Arts Center — which was near empty and oddly tense. With good reason. The CAC’s director, Dennis Barrie, was waiting on a jury’s verdict in his obscenity trial, stemming from an exhibition of photographs by Robert Mapplethorpe the spring before. We moved on to the downtown Skyline parlor, and then to the legendary Flanagan’s Landing, where I experienced a bar for the first time in my life.

Fortified with equal parts MGD and pennant fever, I impulse bought a bootleg t-shirt and the playoff edition of the new National sports newspaper. Neither lasted through the next summer.  The game you probably remember — Paul O’Neill’s famous throw-out of Bobby Bonilla was directly toward me. Dibble and Myers’ dominance. Barry Larkin’s ninth inning defensive brilliance.

It’s all of a piece, for me. Any single element of this day would’ve been the highlight of my year, but they it all happened at once.

Bill: Be easy to say something from the BRM days, or the ’90 team. But for me, it’s a twi-night doubleheader on 7/25/74. The day I got my driver’s license, my mom let me have the car, and my buds and I headed for Riverfront. Reds scored 7 runs in the 8th and 9th to win the first game 14-13 (on a Perez 2 run bomb in the 9th) and Fred Norman threw a 5 hit shutout in the second game for a 5-0 win. Box scores are really interesting, Merv Rettenmund led off the first game for the Reds, with Foster in CF and Bench playing 3B. Second game, Geronimo led off (and went 3-4) with Griffey Sr. hitting 8th. I looked up the stats, but I can still remember that Perez homer and that feeling of watching baseball with my friends. That’s a lifetime memory.

Steve: The Reds greatest accomplishments in my lifetime were by the Big Red Machine and I was lucky enough to go to a few of the postseason games as a teenager in ’75 and ’76. Then there was the 1990 miracle, but I hadn’t lived in Cincinnati for 12 years by then. This question asks about the best memory. And memory is enhanced by in-person observation and recency. For me, the answer is Clinchmas. I was sitting right behind the Reds dugout. I may even be in the iconic picture of Jay Bruce with his hand up. Not only did I experience the sudden and dramatic win, but the celebration spilled out of the clubhouse back to the field, right in front of my seats. Other than being soaked by beer, it felt like I was part of the prolonged celebration. I drove back downtown the next day to buy an NL Central Champions ball cap. I vividly remember how that felt, the jubilation of the Reds finally, finally winning the division again. Second choice would be witnessing Homer Bailey’s second no-hitter from the same seat.

Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky’s Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve’s thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.

Join the conversation! 80 Comments

  1. September 16, 1988. Reds 1 – Dodgers 0. Tom Browning’s perfect game. I have never lived in Reds country and though I’ve been to many wonderful games – 1990 NLCS game 1 (wonderful for the energy, not the outcome), the first game at GABP, Barry Larkin’s major league debut, Michael Lorenzen’s home run tribute to his father – many of my Reds memories came via late night, long distance broadcasts from WLW to Boston or Atlanta. On that night there was a 2 hour+ rain delay so by the first pitch it was dark enough that Marty and Joe came in just fine in the Boston suburbs. 27 outs later Browning had finished a historic gem. It was the only game I heard or saw that year all the way from the first pitch to “This One Belongs to the Reds”. Magic.

  2. The easy answer for me would be Jay Bruce’s home run…but I’ll go a different direction. My house was being renovated, my family was curled up on a tiny couch in front of a tiny TV to watch the Reds play the Indians. All of my family went to bed after Elizardo Ramirez gave up 5 in the top of the first. Too bad for them, because the Reds came back and won on a walkoff grand slam by Adam Dunn to win by 1. My brother (8) and I (10) ran upstairs and jumped on top of our parents to wake them up. Names I remember from that game: Kearns, Phillips, Valentin, Yan, Mercker, Castro, Lopez. George Grande’s call made it all the better!

  3. Mine is probably tied to BRM – either finally winning in 75 or dominating in 76. But one moment that is also up there was Eric Davis HR in 1st inning of Game 1 1990 WS… talk about announcing your presence with authority. Wow!

    • I was watching that game in the dayroom for our flight at Goodfellow AFB, in TX. I didn’t have much hope for our Reds against the amazing A’s but hey, baseball is a weird game. I figured if we can get to a game 6 or 7, anything could happen and it would start with a W for game 1. Well, Davis crushed that HR and my entire thinking changed. “Yeah baby! We’re gonna win this thing!!” It was awesome and that is probably my favorite Reds memory.

      • A close 2nd actually happened before the game. My cousin was in from CA for a game and was trying to get some autographs. I told him that he could count on Phillips and Casey. They were both awesome, signing for him and talking to him for a few seconds before moving on. Was good to see.

  4. As a younger child, it would be waking up (to the radio), and the first you hear is WORLD CHAMPION CINCINNATI REDS in 1975.
    Followed by the sweep of the Yankees for Back to Back Championships.

  5. My favorite was seeing Todd Frazier come back and win the homerun derby in front of the home town crowd. I was above the outfield bleachers and saw Sean Casey catch one of the balls over in that left field box. I don’t remember who hit that ball but either way I have never been to a sports event where the crowd was so alive. It was the coolest moment ever to see. It was just awesome to see the whole city come alive like that.

  6. Pete becoming hit King for sure! I was a kid sitting in the yellow seats and was going crazy!

  7. Eric Davis lead off home run in 90 World Series!

  8. My memory of growing up in Trenton when it was a village of less than a thousand people and listening to the radio when Paul Sumercamp, the park announcer, would say ‘good afternoon and welcome to Crosley Field …’ followed by Waite Hoyt and the ballgame on the Burger Beer Baseball Network.

  9. Two distinct memories, one on the field and one off the field.

    The night the Reds announced they had traded for Tom Seaver I went bonkers. The announcement came very late in the evening. I was at my parents home that night and everyone else was in bed, sound asleep. Tom Terrific was a Red! The Tom Terrific! I was jumping around and screaming, looking for someone to share my uncontrollable delight and finding no one. I did the unthinkable and barged into my parents bedroom awash with unmitigated excitement. My father jumped out of bed trying to figure out who was seriously injured, if the house was on fire or what other catastrophic calamity had befallen the world to wake him from a sound sleep. My mother figured out that there wasn’t any emergency and before he had a heart attack, calmed my father by informing him it was just something about baseball .

    The on-field moment I remember most was watching Jay Bruce’s epic, 12-pitch battle at the plate in the bottom of the 9th inning against Sergio Romo and the Giants in the 2012 NLDS. The intensity and fervor in the stadium grew exponentially with each pitch and each foul ball. The stadium was rocking and the raucous cacophony was deafening. My son and I were screaming and jumping, making a half-hearted effort to avoid plunging over the railing from our field view box seats. The dejection of Posey’s grand slam had been purged from our hearts and souls and replaced with decades of hopes and dreams for a return to past glory. When the battle ended, the outcome became secondary to the knowledge that Bruce and the Reds had left everything on the field that day. It just wasn’t to be.

    • I have never been so sure in my life of something sports related that after about the 8th pitch in that AB that Jay was going to hit a HR. I just absolutely knew it was about to happen. Dang it.

  10. The 1990 World Series. The city was electric. I was 14 years old and I remember my friend at that time was an Oakland fan. We was at a school dance during one of the games (can’t remember which one…it was a long time ago, alright! lol But I think it might’ve been game 2 or 3) Anyway! We was at this dance and the game was playing on a tv in the lobby and we was out there briefly checking the progress. Of course the reds had the lead but since we were teenage boys and there were teenage girls there, we went back to the dance. As we were heading back onto the dance floor my Oakland fan friend kept saying, “We’re gonna win one!” and I kept saying with a smile on my face, “no they’re not!” I don’t know what made me so confident but I had never been so sure of anything in my life. But I gotta say I was relieved when Benzinger caught that last out, lol!

    Didn’t think that would be the last world title we’d see in Cincinnati. For the longest time I had never heard anything about the Reds being a small market team or the business side of baseball. I don’t think I would’ve cared even if I had heard about it way back in the day. I don’t particularly care for the business side of baseball even today…I hate it, actually! I understand it but I hate it…with a purple passion. But at least I’ll always have 1990. But I hope this current rebuild ends very, very soon and it brings us several championships. At least one. I’ll consider the rebuild a failure if we don’t win a title.

  11. Bench homers in the 76 series to clinch it and later the sound bite of Sparky saying looks like we are going to be champs again.

  12. For me it was 1990 when the reds went wire to wire. What an exciting season it was. Then to win the world series was the icing on the cake.

  13. Using Steve’s mantra of having to be there, then it would be seeing Pete get his 3,000 hit on the day I graduated from Seminary.

  14. It would have to be 1990 WS the very second Todd Benzinger caught Carney Lansford’s pop up for the final out of Game 4. I was too young in 75 & 76 and only have vague memories of being at fountain square for the celebration. The 90 team was unexpected considering the Pete fiasco and injuries to key players the year before. If I recall, the 90 team didn’t have high expectations going in and originally had Rolando Roomes slated for LF and the Reds acquired Billy Hatcher around opening day which if social media was around in 90 would have been commented with contempt. Funny thing about 90 was that except for Sabo and Duncan the main line-up Larkin, Davis, O’Neill collectively for them had average years and relied mostly besides a hot start featured good starting pitching (yes a Reds team that had good starting pitching) and a lights out bullpen.

  15. My greatest memory upon reflection is from the 1976 World Series. Pete Rose standing only a few feet away from Mickey Rivers (a terror at the time) daring him to bunt, maybe even hit him in the face. It didn’t seem to matter. Mickey Rivers Rivers folded as did the rest of the mighty Yankees.

  16. Going to Game 2 of the 1990 World Series. Billy Hatcher getting hit after hit and Joe Oliver grounding one down the third base line off Dennis Eckersley to win it.

  17. Lots of really good answers in this thread.

  18. Game 1 of the 2012 NLDS. I drove from Salt Lake to SF with a friend while in college!

  19. I think I’d add to this list: That moment when Joe Morgan’s single fell into Fenway Park’s centerfield in the top of the ninth – with two outs – to give the Reds a 4-3 lead in Game Seven.

  20. The obvious answer for me would be seeing Todd Benzinger settle under that foul ball and hearing the call from the late Jack Buck: “Popped up into short right, foul ball, Benzinger wants it…Cincinnati, the champions of baseball!!” It was the first Reds championship I’d ever witnessed.
    However, on a personal level, for me there was no greater day as a Cincinnati fan than July 21, 1978, when the Big Red Machine rolled into Montreal–an hour’s drive north of my home in Vermont. My Dad promised he’d get tickets for me and my brothers, but it wasn’t until long after that Friday night game that I found out how he went about it. It turned out that, in a display of astonishing chutzpah, he’d decided to call the president of the Montreal Expos directly. He somehow eventually got through, whereupon he was greeted by the wrath of an infuriated President John McHale.
    “What do you want??!!” the president barked.
    “I wanted to speak to you.”
    “WELL, WHAT DO YOU WANT??!!” McHale, was, if anything, even angrier now.
    “I just wanted some tickets for me and my boys to the Cincinnati game on Friday night!”
    LONG pause. And then finally, “Ohhhhhhhhhh…is THAT all you want! Well, er, um, go to such-and-such a window on Friday night and your tickets will be there.”
    So, we dutifully showed up at the appointed window and sure enough, there were four tickets. We showed them to an usher, whose face lit up as she said “Right this way!”
    To our utter surprise and delight, we were on the field level–a first. But we wouldn’t know just how good our seats were until we reached our destination–box seats, RIGHT next to the Reds dugout. There they all were, merely feet away…Bench, Foster, Rose, Morgan…Seaver sat a couple yards from us, grousing the whole night to a pitching coach. In between one of the innings, my younger brother lifted up a tarp and we peaked in to see the “backstage” scene, Bench and others heading to the clubhouse. Pete Rose extended his hitting streak to 34 games. Dan Dreissen hit a long homer into the upper deck in right field. Rookie Mike LaCoss was brilliant. The Reds soared to a 10-3 victory.
    It was the greatest night of my childhood.
    I apologize for the lengthy post…thanks for the opportunity to reminisce!

    • DING DING DING!!!

      Reds fans…I think wee have a winner! Thanks for sharing Dayton.

    • Yes that unadulterated Childhood joy. If we could capture it and bottle it. We’d make a fortune. Great Post.

    • Great story Dayton!!

  21. Steve, I would have to go with Tony Perez’s 2 run homer off Bill Lee (his “eephus pitch”) earlier that night in the 6th inning. The Reds then tied the game in the 7th leading to your memory in the 9th. I will never forget the excitement of the Reds winning that World Series!

    • This would have been mine, so I’ll pick a second one. The Reds seemed helpless against Bill Lee, down 3-0 in Boston. 6th inning, Pete Rose breaks up what would have been an inning ending double play. Then Perez hits that 2 run homer way over the Green Monster. From there knew the Reds would win.

      I think it was the biggest HR in Reds history. Without that, only 1 WS win, and the BRM is remembered as “Great starting lineup but only 1 WS win, like the Dodgers from 1947-56.

  22. Favorite Reds memory is riding the bus to Riverfront with my dad (sometimes skipping school). Still remember what it was like walking around the outskirts of the stadium and seeing a tiny sliver of the astroturf before heading up to our crappy seats.

  23. I also immediately focused on games I had attended. My most memorable one has to be the penultimate game of the 1964 season which the Reds lost to the Phillies 4-3 despite taking a 3-0 lead into the 8th inning at Crosley field. This loss cost the Reds at least a tie for the NL pennant which was won by the Cardinals when the Reds also lost their final game of the season 2 days later.
    .
    The game turned a couple of memorable plays. I was sitting in the leftfield foul line field boxes with my father; and one of those plays happened no more than 150-200 feet or so from us. 53 years later, it is still my most memorable Reds moment..

    In the 4th inning already leading 1-0, the first two Reds, Vada Pinson and Frank Robinson reached base on a walk and a single. The Reds next batter, Deron Johnson, hit a screaming line drive headed for the short gap in left center field. Phillies LF Alex Johnson, a man known for his bat and feared by Phillie fans for his fielding ineptness, raced toward the ball and made a reaching almost lunging stab at the ball as he fought his way up and across Crosley’s infamous outfield terrace. Somehow Johnson snared the drive, which appeared to actually be by him, for an out. Back at the infield, Pinson and Robinson had been running on the pitch and were easily caught off for a triple play. Instead of 2 runs across and a man on 2nd or 3rd with no outs, the Reds were out of the inning.

    This loss coupled with the following Reds loss in the season’s final game went a ways toward teaching a 15 year old fan that life doesn’t always break the way we want it to and that things don’t always turn out right for the good folks, whoever that might be..

    • Just want to add that the other memorable moment from this game was the little blooper over 2nd base that neither SS Leo Cardenas or 2B Pete Rose caught in the decisive Phillies 4 run 8th inning. History has tended to blame Cardenas over Rose but I don’t necessarily share that opinion. Leo may have had the greater skill to cover ground; but, it may have been closer to Pete. Maybe sometimes stuff just happens,

      • Cardenas was blamed in the morning papers because of what happened before and after the blooper that wasn’t caught. Cardenas was hit by a pitch just before, he was the only one in the stadium who thought it was on purpose, and was enraged. O’Toole was visibly upset after that bloop was not caught, and reporters assumed his anger was with Cardenas, who still seemed preoccupied

        Reporters’ assumption was reinforced by a nasty fight between O’Toole and Cardenas in the clubhouse after the game.

        I told that part of the story this way in my RLN post (see above) about that game, and Ohio Jim (is he still here ?) commented that he was at that game and Rose should have caught it.

        Jim also said he was sitting near the fly ball to Johnson, and it seemed to “curl back” to him.

        The whole Reds team was heartbroken, they wanted to win for Fred Hutchinson (their outstanding manager) in ’64, he was dying of cancer.

        • Pinson,
          OhioJim and I are one and the same person. When I started doing game previews and features here for the 2017 season, OhioJim had to make way for my real name in order for the Byline to display properly when when I was writing posts as opposed to commenting.

          I go back and forth over whether Rose “should” have caught the blooper. Today I was more generous to him. At the least I believe Rose made one of his bull like charges at the ball and distracted Cardenas, But for that matter Pete may have also stutter stepped when he saw Leo coming. FWIW or not, the play by play transcription on Baseball Reference calls it a “single to 2B” and my best recollection is that the ball hit dead behind the 2B bag or slightly to the RF side which would seemed to have made it the 2B’s ball given that the hitter, Frank Thomas, was a RH power hitter.

          As for Johnson’s catch, yes, the only explanation I’ve ever had over the years is that the ball had to have turned over and curled back to him “just enough” at the last second. It appeared to be by him as he reached out in front of himself on one axis yet behind himself to his left (glove) side on another and grabbed it. The elevation of the terrace may have also been a factor, giving him just enough additional height to his reach to make the catch.

          • JIm, Great to know that you’re still here, and thanks for sharing again. I liked this “new guy” Jim Walker but didn’t know it was you.

          • Likewise, I am always glad when you drop back by RLN. We “oldsters” have to stick together. 😉

            I recently took a two week plus vacation and was out of touch (it included 10 days at sea in two 5 day runs) which started about time the season ended; and, then just felt like taking a hiatus until the off season got into swing.

    • Easily my most heartbreaking Reds loss. I wrote a whole post about the 1964 NL pennant race on RLN a few years back, focusing on that game.

    • Jim, About your last sentence, similar for me. I was 13 and lived and died with the Reds. As I’ve said, it was my most heartbreaking loss ever as a Reds fan, partly because I was 13 and learned that “Things don’t always turn out”.

      I knew the Cardinals would beat the Mets and the Phils would beat the Reds on Sunday, and was stoic about that ending.

      • I was 13 also and that loss still to do this day is one of the hardest to take. That one and the loss to the A’s in the seventh game in the 1972 WS.

  24. Hate to say it but when Johnny Bench was struck out on a intentional walk against the A’s in the World series.

  25. I’m surprised no one (of us old guys) has mentioned Bench’s HR in the bottom of the 9th in the 1972 LCS (tied the score, then won the pennant on a wild pitch). See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rrOqXahuTg . Hands down the greatest memory for me.

    • That’s a good one; but, for whatever reason my thoughts went to plays I had seen in person. That HR by Bench is also special to me because the Pirates RF who ran over to the wall but could only watch the ball fly out of the park was one of all time favorites, Roberto Clemente; and as fate had it, tragically this was his last game.

    • Same here. The stadium was shaking so much I thought it was going to fall apart.

    • Great memory. I watched as a long haired Yale student with a bunch of the gang in a college buttery (hamburger hangout). I was the only Reds fan but we all went crazy.

  26. So many great memories, highlighted of course by my first sports memories of watching the 75/76 WS with my Dad and then the whole amazing blur of 1990 all the way up to Chris Sabo’s bleeped out comments at the celebration parade addressing the cocky A’s thinking they would be the ones bringing the brooms, not!

    But the games you go to live tend to stick with you beyond the ones you watch on tv. Growing up in Florida didn’t get to see the Reds live very often, still don’t, but once I was old enough to drive took almost a yearly trek to Fulton County Stadium in Atlanta starting in the mid-80’s. We won almost all those games, we were the Reds, they were the yearly cellar dweller always on TBS Braves. The game that I really looked forward to and remember was seeing Danny Jackson pitch and a really long rain delay where pretty much 99% of the crowd other than Reds fans left. Danny really should have won the Cy Young that year, 23 wins, amazing ERA…

  27. All great answers. I was too young and only have vague memories of the 75/76 championship teams. I really became a baseball fan during the 1977 season and loved witnessing George Foster’s 52 HR season. I think for me, most of my great memories comes from listening to Marty and Joe throughout Reds country powered by WLW. I remember sneaking in my radio into my bedroom when it was way past bedtime to catch the last couple innings of home games and trying to stay up late to listen to the west coast road games. With that being said, my favorite memories include:
    1) 1978 – After several close calls as a Met; hearing the end of Tom Seaver’s no hitter against the Cardinals.
    2) 1984 – listening as Mario Soto come within 1 strike of getting a no hitter against the Cardinals.
    3) May 1988 – Returning to my dorm room after studying in the college library and seeing 10 guys sitting in my room with my roommate listening to the Reds on radio. I was able to catch the last couple of innings of Ron Robinson also coming within 1 strike of a Perfect Game. Although both Mario and Ron did not get the desired results, listening to Marty and Joe call those last few innings were great.
    4) Sept. 1988 – hearing the end of Tom Browning’s perfect game.
    5) Game 4 of the World Series – at the time, I lived about 250 miles away from Cincinnati. I watched the first 8 innings on TV. For the 9th inning, I went to my car and was able to catch the last 3 outs on WLW even though there was significant static in the background.

    • We were at the Soto near no-hitter in 84 and was more nervous for that than any playoff or world series game the Reds were involved in. George Hendrick homer end up tying the game with 2 outs in the 9th and Reds won on a Brad Gulden single in the bottom of the 9th off Bruce Sutter of all people.

  28. Another one.
    Got to go to the game that Tony came back, after being traded.
    The Fans booed Bench after catching Tony’s foul out.

    • I was there that whole weekend.Had a stomach bug but got through it.Drove up from WVA to see the games.Pop up on the first pitch landed almost on top of me was afraid to move because of the bug.Friends still remember and laugh to this day.

  29. Too many to list, so I’ll go with my first Red’s game: 6/21/1964, Crosley Field. My uncle took my cousin and I to the game. Red’s lost to the Dodgers 4-2. I was disappointed Pete Rose didn’t start, but he pinch hit later. I guy named Koufax started for the Dodgers.

    The next night Pete started. The Red’s lost, but I got to see Giants named Mays and McCovey play.

    I’ll never forget the feeling I had when as a 6 year old I saw the diamond for the first time. I still get that feeling today when I walk from the concourse to the seats to look out onto the diamond.

  30. Haven’t seen this gem yet listed….

    Norm Charlton bowls over Dodgers catcher Mike Scioscia at home, June 24, 1990

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fLTmd4Ni974

    A one minute clip that defines the Nasty Boys, old Riverfront, and everything else about the 1990 Reds that captivated a very young me.

    (The old Starter Brand satin jacket !!!!!)

  31. First time posting…When the Reds fell behind 3-0 in Game 7 of the 1975 World Series, I ran up to my room crying. First 1970, then ’72, then ’73…they were going to lose again! Then I remember my dad coming up a little later and gently telling me that they had pulled within 3-2 (to this day one of my biggest sport spectating regrets is not seeing Perez crush the Eephus pitch live). All of a sudden my tears dried up, I went downstairs, watched the rest of the game, and when Geronimo caught the last ball, I went berserk. Good life lesson…don’t ever give up

  32. August 17, 1984. Eleven years old. Two days prior, the Reds traded with the Montreal Expos to get Pete Rose back in Cincinnati as player-manager. The morning of the 17th, my Dad told us that we were going to the Reds game that night, Pete’s first game as player manager. My brothers and I drove down late afternoon and met my Dad for dinner at the Wendy’s on Fourth Street, then walked to the game. Our seats were terrible, several rows up in the reds seats somewhere in left field. An amazing crowd for an August baseball game. When Pete came up for his first at-bat, he laced a signature single up the middle. the centerfielder misplayed it (the ball was going awfully fast on the concrete outfield turf at Riverfront), and Pete ran around second and into third base. It was scored a single and an error, but who cares. It was a triple. And even though there wasn’t even a throw into third base, Pete slid in head first. The crowd went insane. That was the day that I became a Reds fan for life.

  33. A lot of my favorites already mentioned (Clinchmas, Frazier HR derby, Dunn GW grand slam), so I’ll bring in another moment I’m fond of. Game 1 of 2012 v Giants, Reds AND Bengals together riding a postseason winless drought since 1995, and the memory of Halladay’s (May he Rest In Peace) no-hitter still fresh. Cueto gets hurt immediately, but Lecure is solid and holds it together until Latos is ready. The bats are solid and the Reds give the ball to Chapman with a 4 run lead in the 9th, and he starts to melt down. Posey comes up with bases loaded as potential winning run, and a whole bunch of terrible Reds/Bengals memories convince me that Posey will somehow give us a loss that hurts more than the no-hitter did…. but Chapman strikes him out, and the Reds/City of Cincinnati has won a playoff game. I’ll always remember the joy/relief of that moment.

    • Definitely one of the most memorable Reds wins ever, but what followed was so painful.

  34. Johnny Bench 1972 NLCS

  35. Johnny bench hitting the game-tying HR against the Pirates in game 5 if the 72 playoffs. ( Bottom of the 8th or 9th, I’m not sure). But it was dramatic and against a very tough Pirates (I refuse to use the term B****s) reliever. I actually cried when he did it. Same game that later the Reds won in the PB/WP.

    Second has to be Joe Morgan’s go-ahead single to drive in the go ahead run V’s Boston in game 7.

    • I hadn’t read the above postings when I posted mine. Great to see the video of the 72 comeback again.

  36. THE sweep!

  37. This is a really fun thread. It’s good to remember that this team brought us joy once upon a time. And maybe again soon.

  38. I’ve already gotten in on a few (Tony Perez HR in Game 7), Bench HR in 1972 NLCS, and my most heartbreaking memory (1964 2nd to last game of the season loss to Phils).

    But here’s my choice:
    1990 NLCS, living in NY where the Reds were scorned because they had “backed in” while the Pirates had to beat the “mighty” Mets. Reds written off after tough Game 1 loss in Cincy.

    Game 2: Doug Drabek, NL Cy Young Award winner, vs. Tom Browning. Reds lead 2-1 in 6th. Andy Van Slyke and Bobby Bonilla single, two on and nobody out, Barry Bonds flies to deep right. Paul O’Neill throws a perfect strike to Chris Sabo who tags out Van Slyke for a 9–5 double play. Dibble and Myers lock it down from there.

    Turning point in 1990 Reds postseason.

  39. I was fortunate to see some gems ………Tony Perez’s two-homer game against the Red Sox at Riverfront in Game 5 of the ’75 World Series. … A very close second is the game Bill Lack referenced above, what a finish. … And an extremely honorable mention to the 1974 season opener, when Hank Aaron hit No. 714 to tie Babe Ruth, but the Reds win the game when Pete Rose scores from second on a wild pitch.

  40. I don’t even remember who we were playing. But it was 1956 and Dad and I were sitting down the left field line. A rookie named Frankie ( yes Frankie) Robinson hit a screaming liner over the fence and off the laundry. My Dad and I both thought this kid was going to be pretty good.

  41. Game 6, 1990 NL playoffs. Reds won 2-1. Glenn Braggs caught what would have been a Carmelo Martinez home run right below my wife and me in the lower deck of red seats. We had driven down right after classes at Ohio State and she had a backpack full of xeroxed articles to study for a class…articles that soon became confetti! A thrilling game, and then walking around downtown with 55,000 other very happy folks. That was my favorite Reds memory.

  42. Nice article. Open up the flood gates of memory lane. There really are so many. Many mentioned above.
    Watching Joey Votto progress from good hitter to great hitter to Hall of Famer over the last 8-9 seasons or so has been a real pleasure. We are witnessing something very special.
    Back in grade school we had a science teacher that was a Reds fan. When the Reds had an afternoon playoff game, he would call it an Audio-Visual day and he would roll one of those big black & white TVs into the classroom. Getting to watch the game in class back then was like getting a winning scratch-off lottery ticket.

  43. Going for a personal story. When we were stationed at FE Warren AFB in Cheyenne Wyoming, I got tickets to a Reds-Rockies game during the 2002 season. We were in the right field bleachers. Well, the Reds were beating the Rockies up pretty good and many Rockies fans had left, so we moved down to the front row of the bleachers. Larry Walker was the Rockies right fielder that night. Well the fans (including my teenaged son) were all yelling at him “Throw us the ball!” Larry finishes warming up and throws the ball right to my son. However, some Rockies fans were jostling for the ball too. During this jostling, my son reaches out further, and the ball hits my son’s glove, right in the palm, bounces out, and falls back on the field. The Rockies fans that were left gave us a lot of grief, but the Reds still won.

  44. I am with many of the responders above in that mine involve games I attended in person. There have been many great moments on TV — world championships, etc. But nothing like being there in person.

    It’s not among the list above, but mine is sitting in a field level seat for game 2 of the Reds-Pirates NLCS in 1979. In the ninth inning, the Reds were down by one, with Hector Cruz on second, and Dave Collins at bat. Collins lined a single to center off Kent Tekulve, scoring Cruz and tying the game — critical because the Reds were already down one game to none.

    I’ve been at Riverfront/Cinergy/GABP for many great moments — Johnny Bench night when Bench hit a homer, Rose returns as a member of the Phillies, 1976 NLCS ninth-inning comeback to beat the Phils and advance to the series, Pete Rose’s 3000th hit — but I have never been in a louder environment than Riverfront when Collins got that game-tying hit. Unfortunately, the Reds lost that game and the series.

    I also remember a game with Tom Seaver pitching for the Reds against the Giants. I was sitting in field-level seats, and Willie McCovey hit a ball that looked at first glance like it might go completely out of Riverfront. At its apex, it definitely was way above the upper ring of the stadium. It was more high than long, however, and dropped into the right field blue seats for a homer. That would have been the longest ball I had seen hit had it not been for Adam Dunn’s 500-plus footer completely out of GABP.

    • The 1976 NLCS ninth-inning comeback is a great memory that I don’t think had been mentioned. The Reds down by two at home in the 9th yet you KNEW they were going win. Foster and Bench lead off with consecutive HRs. Then you really knew they were going to win, which they did 7-6, without making a single out.

      I believe that was when the 75-76 Reds first removed the national doubt that they were a great team. There were still many doubters after 1975, people saying “you can’t have great team without great pitching and their starting rotation isn’t even good.” A lot of people thought the Red Sox would beat them, and then thought the Reds were lucky to win the ’75 WS.

      In the 1976 regular season, the Phillies were thought by many to be the best team in baseball and they won 6 of their first 8 games against the Reds. The Reds were only slight favorites to win that NLCS. But that sweep, and the seeming inevitability of it, changed the national perception of the Reds.

      I remember Howard Cosell loudly (of course) paying homage to their greatness that night before the Yankees-Royals game.

      I was in New Haven which was all Yankee and Red Sox fans, and nobody thought the Yankees had a chance to win a single game in that WS.

  45. Watching Johnny Bench play his whole career and watching the big Red machine. It does not get any better than that.

  46. Looking over these comments brings a lot of additional memories. As a fan, I go back to Frank Roberson at Crosley field in 56.

    • I love that choice, I was thinking of how F Robby had not been mentioned in this thread. Tied the ML record fir HWs by a rookie with 38. It remained the NL record until 2017.

  47. Joe Morgan single to center field, to score to winning run, in game 7 of 1975 World Series. That season, Morgan was just incredible with clutch hits, so this was the appropriate cap to the season. The man could not be stopped…

  48. Awesome question, awesome thread. So many wonderful memories.

    I have to go with the cliche 1990 game 4 in Oakland but it only partly has to do with the Reds. I was a Junior in HS and football was a huge part of my life. I lived and loved the game. Unfortunately, the game didn’t love me back much at the time. I was on a woefully terrible team and we had lost 22 games in a row over parts of 3 seasons. In only a couple of those 22 did we even have a shot at winning. That Saturday night, we put it all together and won a game. It was pure jubilation. We showered quick knowing that the game was on and got back home just in time to get to our house to see the last couple of innings. What an experience. Easily the best night of my high school years.

    As far as games seen in person, my family was all there for the 2012 division clincher. We needed the Cubs to win an early game if I remember correctly to be able to clinch it on the field. The Cubs granted our wish as we watched the game on the stadium big screen and then we just needed the Reds to come through which they did. Amazing experience even from way up high in our $5 seats in section 536. We lingered and watched and walked the concourse as a family and spent way too much money on division championship t-shirts, pennants, and hats. A wonderful family memory for sure.

  49. No.1 would have to be Bench’s playoff hr off Dave Guisti, #2any late inning hr of Doggies with Nuxy calling it,#3Roses inside park hr against Padres in Cincinnati when ball deflected off Winfield’s glove at rt.field wall and rolled along warning track to 404 marker allowing Pete to circle the bases,#3Bruces hr. to clinch the division,Benchs two hr in AllStar game and being robbed of third at the wall by Yaz with a leaping catch in Washington,#5Benchs two games against Lefty that he hit 3 homeruns in each game,how many players can ever say they did that,#6Bench makeing a leaping catch against the screen in playoff game,#7Hardthrowing Maloney’s and Wilson’s back to back no-hitters,#8Baileys two no-hitters especially the 2nd since I got to watch it on tv,#9 Wayne Simpsons dominant 1st.half rookie yr,#10 watching one of the most underrated SS of all time Concepion roam,glide,and throw his one hop t(rows to Toney.#11 50,000 plus people attending a Reds,Dodgers DH in sweltering heat on a Sunday in the early 70ies when their rivalry was as good as it gets .

  50. My best Reds memory is hands down being out on the pavilion in center field for Jay Bruce’s clincher in 2010. I’m not lying when I say that ball came off the bat at a straight line out to where I was standing. It was surreal, and I’ve never seen a stadium as electric as GABP was that night. My voice was completely shot within an hour. It’s moments like that that remind me why I love my Cincinnati Reds.

  51. my very first reds game. 1989 against houston. 16 hits in first inning. final was 18-2. pretty cool.

    also. eric davis HR in game one 90 series. i idolized him.

  52. Opening Day 2000 when the starting lineup was announced & Junior ran out of the Reds dugout to take his place along the first base line. Riverfront was so loud…

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About Steve Mancuso

Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky's Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve's thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.

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