This Day in Reds History: Two-way Rube Bressler

Rube Bressler at the bat - www.theconloncollection.com

On this day in Reds history, Rube Bressler was born.

On this day in 1894, former Red Rube Bressler was born in Coder, PA. Bressler started his career as a pitcher but transitioned to the field full-time in 1921 at the age of 26, which was his fifth season with the Reds. His career had been up-and-down as a pitcher, but it took off when he started playing the outfield. From 1921 to 1927 (his last year in Cincinnati), Bressler hit .322 with an OPS+ of 118. He even received MVP votes in 1924. The fact that he played in just 115 games that season probably cost him a shot at serious contention for the award.

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On this day in 1910, former Red Billy Sullivan was born in Chicago. Sullivan hit .266 in 85 games for the 1935 Reds.

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On this day in 1922, Reds Hall of Famer Ewell Blackwell was born in Fresno, CA. His best season came in 1947 with the Reds when he won a league-leading 22 games with a 2.47 ERA. Blackwell's performance earned him a second place finish in the MVP race behind Boston's Bob Elliott.

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On this day in 1943, former Red Heinie Peitz died in Cincinnati at the age of 72. Peitz mainly played catcher during his nine years in the Queen City though he could also handle first, third, and even second base. He hit .279 with a 98 OPS+ as a Red. His best year probably came in 1902 when he hit .315 with 54 runs and 60 RBI in over 400 plate appearances.

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On this day in 1981, the Reds sold infielder Junior Kennedy to the Cubs for $50,000. Kennedy was a patient hitter with a good glove, but his utter lack of power prevented him from ever becoming an established regular. His ability to walk boosted his on-base percentage to .325 while his career slugging average was just .299.

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On this day in 1997, the Reds released shortstop James Lofton. He never made an appearance with the Reds and played in only eight games in his entire big league career. Lofton hit .192 with Boston in 2001 in his one stint in the major leagues.

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On this day in 1998, the Dodgers hired former Cincinnati manager Davey Johnson.

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Kevin Mitchell is Batman picked up the point yesterday. Raul Mondesi won the 1994 NL Rookie of the Year award.

Rube Bressler's .311 average as a Red is the tenth highest all-time in franchise history. Who is the Reds' all-time leader in batting average?

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