Ten Oddities That Marked The 2019 Cincinnati Reds
Eugenio Suarez Was Involved In Several Rare Occurrences Last Year
As the year closes out, we will encounter many articles about significant or odd occurrences that transpired during its 365 days. One of the more interesting news items appeared on MLB.com, where the writer looked back on oddities on the baseball field.
Each team had exactly one incident featured except for the Cincinnati Reds, who had no fewer than three pointed out in the piece. What is even more amazing, however, is that the Reds could actually have had as many as ten rarities included in that column, a number that is even greater than the record number of ejections suffered by first year manager David Bell.
As the article explained, Cincinnati made all kinds of history in 2019. Against the Dodgers in Los Angeles on April 17, first baseman Joey Votto popped out to first base. That usually unremarkable feat happened to be quite significant here, for it was the the first time in his 13-year career that he had popped out. it came in his 6,829th career plate appearance, more than 3,000 plate appearances more than the next active player without a popout to first in his career.
Another oddity recalled in the article occurred on Sept. 4, when Michael Lorenzen became the only player besides Babe Ruth to hit a home run, play in the field, and get the win as a pitcher in the same game. The part-time pitcher and outfielder joined the Sultan of Swat in an 8-5 victory over the Phillies.
Manager David Bell was saddled with a far more dubious distinction, having been ejected seven times. That total of early showers marked the the most for a rookie manager since 1956, when Bobby Bragan of the Pittsburgh Pirates got tossed seven times.
In addition to the incidents addressed by MLB.com
, there was the fact that Yasiel Puig became the first player ever to be thrown out of a game and get traded on the same day. The ejection came on July 31 against the Pirates, amid a brawl that led to seven ejections in all. As soon as Puig entered the locker room, the club informed him that he had been traded to the Cleveland Indians in exchange for Trevor Bauer.
His replacement in right field was Aristedes Aquino, who slugged nine home runs in his first thirteen games in the Major Leagues to establish a new record for quickest to that mark. The previous high was seven in thirteen games, accomplished by Trevor Story of the Colorado Rockies back in 2016.
Another incident that could have been included occurred on May 5, when Eugenio Suárez, outfielder Jesse Winker and second baseman Derek Dietrich hit back-to-back-to-back home runs against San Francisco lefthander Jeff Samardzija on three-consecutive pitches in the first inning. A power sequence like that had not happened in baseball in over a decade, since on June 12, 2007 three Dodgers homered in three consecutive pitches against the New York Mets.
Deitrick was involved in another record on June 21, getting hit by a pitch three different times. That trio of HBPs, as painful as they probably were, did set a modern day record.
On July 13 against the Rockies, Deitrick again entered the record books. He went deep in a 17 run output that saw the Reds became the first team to hit five triples and at least three home runs in the same game.
Lorenzen was at the heart of another record when he and Jose Iglesias came off the bench to hit home runs against the Phillies, who themselves got homers from non starters Jay Bruce and Logan Morrison.That game was the first in baseball history in which four players came off the bench to hit home runs.
Finally, as a tenth and last rarity, Suarez on September 18 blasted his 48th home run. That blast, which came against Jon Lester of the Chicago Cubs, topped Andre Gallaraga's mark of 47 as the most ever by a Venezuelan player.