Phillips joins elite Reds company after Monday's game
CHICAGO -- In his eighth season with the Reds, Brandon Phillips has matched Hall of Famer and former Reds second baseman Joe Morgan for the most home runs and RBIs at that position in franchise history. It took Morgan eight years in Cincinnati to set the standard, as well.
"It just means I've been over here too long for me to do that," Phillips joked. "Joe Morgan, he's the best second baseman to play this game. For me to be in same category as him is an honor. I feel like I'm nowhere even close to Joe Morgan."
With his six-RBI night on Monday -- matching a career-high that he has set three other times, most recently on May 5, 2009 -- Phillips tied Morgan in home runs (152) and passed him to take over the top spot in RBIs (615). Morgan drove in 612 as a Reds second baseman.
"I know Joe played some of his career elsewhere, but to be the top anything in any place -- and I think [Phillips has] done it really with nobody noticing it," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "What's so amazing is he's batting all over the lineup -- some leadoff, some fourth, some second. Joe batted mostly third here, so I figure Brandon lost a bunch of RBIs batting leadoff. I think it's a wonderful accomplishment."
Morgan was an All-Star in each of his eight seasons with the Reds, and won both of his Most Valuable Player Awards in Cincinnati. He played 1,495 of his 2,649 games elsewhere, including 10 years in Houston.
Phillips' first four seasons came in Cleveland, where he totaled just 38 RBIs in 135 games. He was traded away for Jeff Stevens in April 2006.
"It feels good to have the stint I've been able to have here," Phillips said. "If it wasn't for Cincinnati, I'd probably be at home. Especially getting let go by another team, and just coming here and taking advantage of it and getting a second chance."