Even some longtime Reds fans have forgotten over time about the big one that got away from wearing a Cincinnati uniform — Vida Blue. That’s right, Vida Blue. In one of his final moves as the Reds General Manager, Bob Howsam traded for the star lefthanded pitcher of the Oakland A’s in December of 1977. […]

Major League Baseball is once again forcing the World Baseball Classic down our collective throats. For this, we can be most ungrateful. And this “Classic” comes from the same entity that gave us a tied All-Star Game, the designated hitter and day/night doubleheaders. I omit the time Major League Baseball took away Vida Blue from […]

Asterisks (*) in this case indicate that neither item turned out to be true…

December 9, 1965: Future Hall of Famer Frank Robinson was traded to the Baltimore Orioles for prospect outfielder Dick Simpson, all-star starting pitcher Milt Pappas, and star reliever Jack Baldschun. The Reds traded former and future MVP Robinson for they thought he was an “old 30” after thinking he was in decline* (notice the asterisk again).

Reds owner Bill DeWitt worked for legendary baseball general manager Branch Rickey as an office boy at age 14 for the St. Louis Cardinals and later followed him to the St. Louis Browns. Rickey, best known for his role in developing farm systems and his leadership in the integration of baseball through Jackie Robinson, had learned an important Rickey adage, that it was better to trade a player a year too early than a year too late. He took that role in trading Robinson for other talents. I described the players the Reds received in trade (Pappas, Baldschun, and Simpson) the way that I did because, in theory, it’s quite likely that DeWitt made a quality trade. He was addressing a Reds need (pitching), he was trying to make room for the Reds future (Tony Perez and Lee May) and he felt that Deron Johnson would be able to repeat his 130-rbi seasonal performance. Coupled with the fact that Robinson wasn’t playing at the same level he had from 1961-63, he thought Robinson was in decline.

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Wow, talk about a timely “this date in Reds history,” only in a better world. Well, not that much better, since the 1981 season will be our “tainted” season; we had baseball’s best record, but didn’t make the playoffs due to the strike and the split season format. On May 28, 1981, Reds’ reliever Doug […]

With Reds roster exasperation on our minds, June 15 marks the anniversary date of two HUGE Reds trades…. 1) June 15, 1977…The Reds acquire future Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Seaver for a number of players, namely infielder Doug Flynn, 1975 Rookie of the Year starting pitcher Pat Zachry, and outfielders Steve Henderson and Dan […]