clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

This Day in Reds History: The birth of baseball's first star

New, comments

On this day in 1857, former Red and Hall of Famer Mike "King" Kelly was born in Troy, NY. Kelly was one of baseball's all-time great characters.

Baseballdivider_medium_medium

On this day in 1900, former Red Syl Johnson was born in Portland, OR.

Baseballdivider_medium_medium

On this day in 1915, former Red Tip O'Neill died in Montreal at the age of 57. In his own lone season with Cincinnati, he hit .251 with good patience and little power. His final line of .251/.339/.327 seems pretty paltry, but that was actually good for an OPS+ of 102 in 1892. O'Neill is the namesake of the Tip O'Neill Award, which is awarded annually to baseball's top Canadian player. Joey Votto has won the award each of the past four seasons. (He did share the award with John Axford of all people in 2011.) Other winners include Justin Morneau, Larry Walker, Terry Puhl, and Jason Bay.

Baseballdivider_medium_medium

On this day in 1971, former Red Brian Moehler was born in Rockingham, NC.

Baseballdivider_medium_medium

On this day in 1977, former Red Chris Reitsma was born in Minneapolis.

Baseballdivider_medium_medium

On this day in 1999, the Reds signed left-handed reliever Hector Mercado. He spent two years in the Queen City and posted a 4.16 ERA (112 ERA+) in 67 innings.

Baseballdivider_medium_medium

Chester Drawers and Charlie Scrabbles each earned a point on Christmas day.

1) King Kelly was the namesake for a short-lived American Association team in Cincinnati. He played for the team for part of its only season. What was the name of the team?

2) Kelly was probably baseball's first true star. He popularized the hook slide and several other plays, such as the hit and run and the act of the catcher backing up first base on throws. Kelly had a successful career as a vaudeville performer. He also inspired a very popular song. What was the name of the song?