May 4, 1869 - The 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings, the first all-professional team, kick off the regular season with a 45-9 win over the Great Westerns of Cincinnati.
June 15, 1869 - In what was widely considered the greatest game in baseball history up to that time, the visiting Red Stockings defeated the powerhouse Mutual club of New York, 4-2.
Nov. 6, 1869 - In the final official match of the season, the Red Stockings defeat the Mutuals of New York, 17-8, on Union Grounds. Baseball's first team of professionals finished the season with a perfect 57-0 record (although the team won more than 70 games, team captain Harry Wright only counted games against other National Association clubs as official).
June 14, 1870 - After 130 consecutive games without a loss, Cincinnati falls to the Brooklyn Atlantics, 8-7, in extra innings. The streak includes 81 official games and 49 exhibitions.
Feb. 2, 1876 - The National League is formed in New York City with Cincinnati as a charter member, along with Chicago, Boston, St. Louis, Hartford, Louisville, New York and Philadelphia.
Oct. 8, 1880 - Cincinnati is expelled from the National League, due in part to its refusal to stop renting out their ballpark on Sundays and to cease selling beer during games.
Nov. 2, 1881 - The American Association is formed during a meeting at the Gibson Hotel in Cincinnati. The Reds would play their next 8 seasons in that league.
Sept. 16, 1882 - The Reds clinch the American Association pennant. It is the first league championship won by a professional team based in Cincinnati.
April 17, 1889 - The first Opening Day "festivities" are seen in Cincinnati. Ballpark decorations and a pregame concert by the Cincinnati Orchestra greet fans before the opener.
Nov. 14, 1889 - Cincinnati is granted re-admission to the National League, joining Boston, Brooklyn, Chicago, Cleveland, New York, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.
April 22, 1891 - The first Opening Day parade is organized by new owner John T. Brush. The parade consists of Webber's military band and 2 large horse-drawn wagons, called Tally-ho's, which were occupied by the Reds and the opponent, the Cleveland Spiders.
April 17, 1902 - One of the most ornately designed ballparks in Major League history, the "Palace of the Fans," hosts its first game.
April 11, 1912 - Redland Field (later known as Crosley Field) hosts its first game as the Reds beat Chicago, 10-6. The official dedication of the ballpark was held May 18.
Sept. 16, 1919 - The Reds clinch the first National League pennant in franchise history with a 4-3 victory over the Giants at Redland Field.
Oct. 9, 1919 - The Reds win the franchise's first World Series, defeating the White Sox, 10-5, in Chicago to claim the eighth and decisive game of the best-of-nine Series.
April 16, 1934 - The Reds' board of directors rename Redland Field "Crosley Field" in honor of new team owner Powel Crosley Jr. Crosley, a radio tycoon, bought the team on February 4 and assured fans that the team would stay in Cincinnati.
June 8, 1934 - The Reds become the first team in Major League history to use an airplane to travel from one city to another. They flew from Cincinnati to Chicago.
May 24, 1935 - The first night game in Major League history is played at Crosley Field. The Reds beat the Philadelphia Phillies, 2-1, before 20,422 fans.
Jan. 27, 1937 - Crosley Field's playing surface is submerged under 21 feet of water due to local creek flooding. Reds pitcher Lee Grissom and groundskeeper Matty Schwab are photographed in a rowboat crossing the field.
June 11, 1938 - Johnny Vander Meer pitches the first of two straight no-hitters, defeating the Boston Braves, 3-0, at Crosley Field.
June 15, 1938 - Johnny Vander Meer pitches his second straight no-hitter, a 6-0 victory over the Dodgers in the first night game played at Brooklyn's Ebbets Field. Vander Meer remains the only pitcher in Major League history to throw no-hitters in consecutive starts.
July 6, 1938 - Crosley Field plays host to the sixth All-Star Game. Ernie Lombardi, Paul Derringer, Ival Goodman, Frank McCormick and Johnny Vander Meer represent the Reds on the NL squad. Vander Meer tosses 3.0 scoreless innings as the NL wins, 4-1.
Sept. 28, 1939 - The Reds clinch the franchise's second National League pennant but are swept by the Yankees in the World Series.
Oct. 8, 1940 - The Reds clinched their second World Series championship with a 2-1 home win vs the Tigers in Game 7.
June 10, 1944 - Pitcher Joe Nuxhall becomes the youngest player in the 20th century to appear in a Major League game. Nuxhall - at 15 years, 10 months and 11 days - yields 5 runs and retires just 2 batters in 2/3 of an inning. Nuxhall wouldn't pitch again in the majors until 1952.
July 25, 1947 - Ewell Blackwell sets the NL record for righthanders and a club record by winning his 16th consecutive start.
July 6, 1949 - The Reds' Walker Cooper sets a club record by collecting 10 RBI in a game vs the Cubs.
July 14, 1953 - Crosley Field plays host to the All-Star Game. A crowd of 30,846 watch as the NL defeats the AL, 5-1. Gus Bell and Ted Kluszewski represent Cincinnati.
Sept. 29, 1956 - The Reds tied the then-Major League record for team home runs when Smoky Burgess belts the team's 221st home run of the season.
July 1, 1957 - After Cincinnati fans stuff the ballot box and vote 8 starters onto the All-Star team, the NL intervenes and pulls 3 Reds players from the starting lineup. Willie Mays, Hank Aaron and Stan Musial replace George Crowe, Wally Post and Gus Bell as starters.
July 18, 1958 - The inaugural Reds Hall of Fame Induction Class is honored in pregame ceremonies. Bucky Walters, Ernie Lombardi, Paul Derringer, Johnny Vander Meer and Frank McCormick are the first inductees.
Sept. 26, 1961 - The Reds clinch the National League pennant. The club is bested by the New York Yankees in a five-game World Series.
Sept. 1, 1967 - The Reds play the longest game in club history and lose to the San Francisco Giants, 1-0, in 21 innings.
June 24, 1970 - The last of 4,453 regular-season NL games is played at Crosley Field. The Reds beat the San Francisco Giants, 5-4.
June 30, 1970 - Riverfront Stadium opens as 51,050 fans attend to see the Reds host the Braves. Atlanta wins, 8-2, as Hank Aaron hits the stadium's first home run.
July 14, 1970 - Just 2 weeks after its opening, Riverfront Stadium hosts the All-Star Game. The NL scores a dramatic 5-4 victory in 12 innings as Pete Rose crashes into AL catcher Ray Fosse to score the winning run on Jim Hickman's RBI-single. Rose was joined in the Midsummer Classic by teammates Johnny Bench, Jim Merritt, Tony Perez and Wayne Simpson.
Oct. 5, 1970 - The Reds complete a sweep of the Pirates to win the first National League Championship Series in franchise history. The victory clinches the first of four pennants the club would win in the decade.
Nov. 29, 1971 - In one of the most significant trades in Reds history, Cincinnati sends Lee May, Tommy Helms and Jimmy Stewart to the Astros in exchange for Joe Morgan, Jack Billingham, Cesar Geronimo, Ed Armbrister and Denis Menke.
Oct. 11, 1972 - The Reds score 2 runs in the bottom of the ninth to beat the Pirates, 4-3, in the fifth and deciding game of the NLCS. Johnny Bench ties the game with a homer off Dave Giusti. George Foster scores the winning run on Bob Moose's wild pitch. Eleven days later, the Reds drop Game 7 of the World Series to the Oakland A's.
Oct. 22, 1975 - The Reds win their first World Series title in 35 years with a 4-3 win over the Boston Red Sox in Game 7. The Series proves to be one of the most exciting in baseball history and features five 1-run games, 5 come-from-behind victories and Carlton Fisk's legendary 12th-inning home run in Game 6 to tie the series, 3-3. Series MVP Pete Rose (10-for-27, .370) helps the Reds to come from behind in every one of their victories.
Oct. 21, 1976 - Cincinnati's Big Red Machine wins its second straight World Series title by sweeping the Phillies and Yankees.
Sept. 28, 1977 - George Foster hits his club-record 52nd home run during an 8-0 win over the Padres at Riverfront Stadium. Foster would go on to dominate the NL MVP voting after hitting .320 with a league-high 149 RBI and 124 runs scored.
July 31, 1978 - Pete Rose extends his hitting streak to 44 consecutive games, a mark topped only by Joe DiMaggio's record of 56. Rose would have the streak halted the next night in Atlanta.
Sept. 17, 1983 – Johnny Bench homers off Houston’s Mike Madden on “Johnny Bench Night” at Riverfront Stadium. It was the 389th and final homer of his career.
Aug. 17, 1984 – Pete Rose debuts as Reds player/manager. Rose leads the Reds to a 6-4 win over the Cubs and goes 2-for-4 with two RBI.
Sept. 11, 1985 – Pete Rose becomes baseball’s all-time hits leader with a single off San Diego’s Eric Show for career hit No. 4,192.
Aug. 2, 1987 – Eric Davis hits his 30th home run of the season to become the first player in franchise history with 30 home runs and 30 stolen bases in the same season.
July 12, 1988 – The All-Star Game returns to Riverfront Stadium as the AL edges the NL, 2-1. Danny Jackson, Barry Larkin and Chris Sabo represent the Reds.
Sept. 16, 1988 – In a 1-0 victory vs the Dodgers, Tom Browning becomes the first pitcher in Reds history to throw a perfect game.
Aug. 24, 1989 – Cincinnati hero Pete Rose is given a lifetime ban from baseball for conduct related to gambling.
Oct. 20, 1990 – After edging the Pirates in the NLCS, the Reds sweep heavily favored Oakland to claim the fifth World Series title in team history. Series MVP Jose Rijo and Chris Sabo lead Cincinnati during the Series.
Nov. 15, 1995 – Barry Larkin wins the 1995 NL MVP after setting a club record for shortstops with a .319 batting average (min. 400 at-bats) and a modern club record of 51 stolen bases.
April 1, 1996 – On Opening Day, veteran umpire John McSherry collapses behind home plate just 7 pitches into the game. McSherry is rushed to University Hospital, where he died from a heart attack.
Sept. 9, 1996 – Riverfront Stadium officially is renamed Cinergy Field.
Sept. 22, 1996 – Barry Larkin becomes the first shortstop in ML history to produce 30 homers and 30 stolen bases in the same season, when he belts his 30th homer in the first game of a doubleheader against the St. Louis Cardinals.
June 13, 1997 – For the first time in the team’s 129-year history, the Reds play an American League opponent during the regular season. The White Sox spoil the first Interleague game with a 3-1 win.
Oct. 4, 1999 – After finishing the regular season tied for the NL Wild Card spot with a 96-66 record, the Reds fall to the Mets, 5-0, in the sixth 1-game playoff in Major League history.
Sept. 11 - All games are postponed due to terrorist acts in New York (World Trade Center), Washington D.C. (The Pentagon) and Somerset, Penn. The regular-season schedule wouldn't resume for another six days.
Dec. 31 - Cinergy Field comes down in a cloud of dust at 8 a.m. More than 25,000 spectators flooded into downtown Cincinnati to witness the event. In just 37 seconds, Riverfront Stadium/Cinergy Field was reduced to a pile of rubble.
Mar. 31 - Cincinnati hosts one of the most anticipated openers in club history with the debut of Great American Ball Park. The Reds lose to the Pirates, 10-1, before a sellout crowd of 42,343.
In their first season under manager Dave Miley, the Reds jumped off to a surprising start, finishing the first half of the season six games above .500 and in contention for a playoff spot. However, injuries and inconsistent pitching led to a second-half slide, which left them with a 76-86 record at season's end. Despite the decline, however, there were plenty of bright spots. In the final campaign of his 19-year run with the Reds, Barry Larkin hit .289. Ken Griffey Jr., belted his 500th home run on Father's Day in St. Louis before undergoing season-ending hamstring surgery a few weeks later. Danny Graves became the club's all-time saves leader and Adam Dunn led the team with 46 home runs and 102 RBIs.
After the club's poor start resulted in the release of second baseman D'Angelo Jimenez and closer Danny Graves and then the dismissal of manager Dave Miley and pitching coach Don Gullett, the Reds set their sights on making the best of a bad situation in 2005. Playing pressure-free ball under interim manager Jerry Narron in the second half, the results were encouraging. Narron got the club focused on the fundamentals of the game, the pitching staff improved dramatically and the offense continued to put up its usual barrage of runs. In the end, '05 was the Reds' fifth consecutive losing season, and the team saw the playoff hopes that come with a boosted payroll go by the wayside. But the emergence of youngsters such as shortstop Felipe Lopez, third baseman Edwin Encarnacion and pitchers Aaron Harang and Brandon Claussen gives the club hope that a winning season just might be around the corner.
With newly hired GM Wayne Krivsky in control and making a flurry of moves and Jerry Narron in his first full year as manager, the Reds pleasantly surprise as division contenders most of the season. However, a late summer fade left them with an 80-82 mark. Aaron Harang and Bronson Arroyo became a formidable 1-2 punch for the rotation. Harang led the NL with 216 strikeouts and six complete games and tied for the league lead with 16 wins. Arroyo finished with a 3.29 ERA and 14 wins while leading the Majors with 240 2/3 innings pitched.
Brandon Phillips emerged as one of the best all-around players in the game of baseball, receiving votes for the National League MVP, Silver Slugger and Gold Glove awards. Phillips became just the second second baseman in Major League history to reach the 30/30 plateau, totaling 30 homers and 32 stolen bases on the season.
The Reds finished 74-88 during new manager Dusty Baker's first season. It was also a year marked by change as general manager Wayne Krivsky was replaced 21 games into the season by Walt Jocketty. Eventually two longtime cornerstone players, Ken Griffey Jr. and Adam Dunn, were traded away as the club focused on a youth movement that featured Joey Votto, Jay Bruce and others. There were several nice individual achievements as starting pitcher Edinson Volquez became a breakout sensation, an All-Star and a 17-game winner. Votto, who hit 24 homers, finished second in NL Rookie of the Year voting. And on June 9, Griffey deposited a Mark Hendrickson curve ball deep over the right-field wall at Dolphin Stadium, which marked career home run No. 600. Griffey became just the sixth player in Major League history join the 600-home run club.
The Reds finished in fourth place with a 78-84 record during a season where injuries marred the roster. The regular starting lineup was together for just 10 games while key players like Joey Votto, Jay Bruce and Ramon Hernandez missed significant time. The rotation was hit too with Edinson Volquez going down in May and he eventually needed season-ending Tommy John surgery on his elbow. There were some positive moments. Votto led the club with a .322 average and 25 home runs while Brandon Phillips drove in a team-high and career-high 98 RBIs and became the only player in franchise history to produce at least 20 doubles, 20 homers and 20 steals in three consecutive seasons. On the mound, Bronson Arroyo won 15 games for the second-straight season and reached the 200 innings mark for the fifth straight year. Beginning on July 10, Arroyo posted a 2.07 ERA over his final 16 starts which gave him the best ERA in the Majors over that span. Closer Francisco Cordero finished second in the National League with 39 saves. And it was a positive year for young players. After several missteps the past couple of seasons, pitcher Homer Bailey seemed to put it all together in the second half and went 6-1 with a 1.70 ERA over his final nine starts. Center fielder Drew Stubbs emerged after his big league debut and hit eight homers with 17 RBIs and 10 steals in 42 games.
While putting together their first winning season since 2000 the Reds won 91 games under manager Dusty Baker and reached the playoffs for the first time in 1995 by winning the National League Central division. Cincinnati battled tooth and nail with the Cardinals for most of the first five months of the season but won the division by five games after St. Louis faded down the stretch. The lineup was led by Joey Votto, who was second in the NL with a .324 batting average and was ranked third with both 37 home runs and 113 RBIs. Votto was supported by strong seasons from Scott Rolen, Jonny Gomes, Drew Stubbs and Brandon Phillips while Jay Bruce notched a career-high 25 home runs. On the pitching side, Bronson Arroyo won a career-high 17 games while stream of young pitchers like Johnny Cueto, Travis Wood and Logan Ondrusek played pivotal roles. The season also marked the highly anticipated arrival of Cuban Aroldis Chapman, who garnered attention while regularly throwing over 100 mph. The Reds' enjoyable run ended faster than they hoped as they were swept in three games by the Phillies in the NL Division Series.
Despite high expectations after winning their division the previous season, the Reds ended up disappointing with only 79 wins and a third-place finish in the National League Central. On the plus side, starting pitcher Johnny Cueto shook off an early injury and had his best year yet to develop into the staff ace. Second baseman Brandon Phillips displayed spectacular defense on his way to his third NL Gold Glove Award and was joined by first-time winner Joey Votto, who improved enough defensively to also win a Gold Glove. There were some infamous moments as well. Opening Day starter Edinson Volquez struggled and was demoted to Triple-A twice, while Bronson Arroyo smashed the club record by allowing 46 home runs and Drew Stubbs also set a club record by striking out 205 times.
The 2012 season was important not just for the present, but also the future of the Reds as it began when cornerstone players Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips were signed to long term contracts. On the field, the Reds won 97 games and claimed their second National League Central crown in three seasons. It was a year that saw ace Johnny Cueto win a career-best 19 games, Aroldis Chapman become one of the league's best closers while saving 38 games, rookie Todd Frazier break out as a star and Jay Bruce win a Silver Slugger Award while hitting 34 homers with 99 RBIs. The club did some of its best work while its best player, Votto, was on the disabled list with an injured knee and went 32-16 in his absence.There were tough times as manager Dusty Baker suffered a minor stroke near the end of the regular season and missed 11 games. After Baker returned, Cincinnati endured a crushing ouster from the NL Division Series to the eventual World Series champion Giants in five games.
Amid myriad injuries, the Reds won 90 games and still finished third behind the Cardinals and Pirates in an ultra-competitive National League Central race. It was a season that saw ace Johnny Cueto, cleanup hitter Ryan Ludwick and relievers Sean Marshall and Jonathan Broxton all spend large chunks of time on the disabled list. Cincinnati reached the postseason for the third time in four seasons, but this time, it was as the second Wild Card team. Disappointment came again as the Reds were ousted in the one-game playoff at Pittsburgh to end the season on a six-game losing streak. The slide down the stretch cost manager Dusty Baker his job, and pitching coach Bryan Price was promoted to take his place in late October. On July 2 vs. the Giants, pitcher Homer Bailey threw his second-no hitter in less than a year (after also notching one Sept. 28, 2012, at Pittsburgh). Mat Latos picked up the slack from the missing Cueto to go 14-7 with a 3.16 ERA and 210 2/3 innings pitched. Acquired to fill a gap in the leadoff spot, Shin-Soo Choo delivered as he reached safely 300 times and finished second in the league behind Joey Votto with a .423 on-base percentage. Jay Bruce (109 RBIs) and Brandon Phillips (103 RBIs) set new personal bests.
After two consecutive postseason appearances, the Reds fell short of making it three after compiling a 76-win campaign to finish fourth in the NL Central in 2014. As is often the case with disappointing seasons, injuries played a key role. Joey Votto missed 100 games, leaving a large void in the heart of the order that was never quite able to be filled. Devin Mesoraco missed nearly 50 games but still managed to hit 25 home runs with 80 RBIs during a breakout season that earned him an All-Star nod. Also a first-time All-Star, Todd Frazier emerged as a major threat at the plate by leading the team with 29 homers and matching Mesoraco's 80 RBIs. On the pitching side, Johnny Cueto won 20 games, becoming the first Red to do so since Danny Jackson in 1988. His efforts got him to the All-Star game along with Aroldis Chapman who turned in yet another dominant season as a closer. Following the season, the Reds set their sights on replenishing their system with young talent when they traded Mat Latos to the Miami Marlins and Alfredo Simon to the Detroit Tigers. Latos had a 3.25 ERA in 16 starts while Simon was coming off an All-Star season where he won 15 games.
The 2015 season saw the Reds finish in last place for the first time since 1983, ending the longest active stretch out of the cellar among the four major pro sports. Amid the 98 losses, the club began a rebuilding process that it hopes can bring it back to prominence sooner than later. Mainstays like ace Johnny Cueto and rotation-mate Mike Leake were traded for prospects and after the season, so was third baseman Todd Frazier. An all-rookie rotation started the final 64-straight games after July 28, smashing an over 100 year old Major League record. It wasn't all bad, however. First baseman Joey Votto returned to form to finish third in the National League Most Valuable Player vote and Cincinnati successfully hosted the All-Star Game at Great American Ball Park. The biggest highlight of the week: Frazier winning the newly re-formatted Home Run Derby in thrilling fashion on his home field.
A 68-94 record put the Reds at the bottom of the National League Central once again as a rebuilding period entered its second season. The biggest shortcomings came from the pitching staff, which shattered the Major League record for home runs allowed with 258. Reds pitchers also led the Majors in walks allowed and hit batters and was 14th in the NL in ERA. But improvement came during a second half that saw Cincinnati post a 36-37 record after the All-Star break, which provided some optimism and prompted ownership to give manager Bryan Price a one-year extension. Anthony DeSclafani returned from injury in June and helped stabilize the rotation while Brandon Finnegan developed in his first full-season as a starter. One of the biggest surprises was waiver claim Dan Straily emerging with a team-high 14 victories and 191 1/3 innings pitched. Meanwhile, Raisel Iglesias and Michael Lorenzen helped solidify a flimsy bullpen after they also returned from the DL in June. Offensively, left fielder Adam Duvall had a breakout season with 33 home runs and 103 RBIs while first baseman Joey Votto returned to his status as one of the game's best hitters as he became the first Major Leaguer since Ichiro Suzuki in 2004 to hit .400 in the second half. Votto batted .326/.434/.550 overall with 29 home runs and 97 RBIs. The 2016 season marked the departure of longtime right fielder Jay Bruce, who was traded to the Mets as the Reds continued to remake their roster. After the season, president of baseball operations Walt Jocketty stepped aside and general manager Dick Williams assumed control of baseball decision making as Cincinnati looks ahead to its next era.
The Reds rebuilding process continued and the club endured a last-place finish in the NL Central standings while losing 94 games. While the pitching staff - loaded with young arms and saddled by veteran injuries - sputtered and needed 16 different starters to get through the season, the lineup and defense performed strongly. Six different players hit 20 or more home runs and the club had four NL Gold Glove finalists and a first-time winner in catcher Tucker Barnhart. Shortstop Zack Cozart was a NL All-Star for the first time after he was elected as a starter during a breakout season. Joey Votto turned in the best season of his 10-year career while starting all 162 games. Votto was only player in the Major Leagues to produce at least 26 homers and 100 RBIs while hitting at least .300 with an OBP of .400 and a slugging percentage of .500. A waiver claim - Cincinnati native Scooter Gennett - emerged as the surprise of the season with 27 homers - including a stunning June 6 game vs. the Cardinals where he became the first Reds player to hit four home runs in one game. On the mound, rookie starter Luis Castillo jumped from Double-A and was the best of the rotation with a 3.12 ERA in 15 big league starts. Closer Raisel Iglesias saved 28 of 30 games while posting a 2.49 ERA.
Early hopes of a successful 2018 campaign dwindled early as the team started 3-15 before manager Bryan Price was replaced by Bench Coach Jim Riggleman for the remainder of the season. At times the team showed sparks of the team that they could be, but with a 10-29 record in one-run games and a slow second half of the season the team posted a 67-95 record. Even in a down year for the Reds, the team sent three players to the All-Star Game with Joey Votto, Scooter Gennett and Eugenio Suarez heading to D.C. to join the National League’s best. Suarez once again looked to be a big part of the future of the franchise posting a career high 34 home runs meanwhile hitting the 100 RBI threshold. In an all-around down year for Reds pitchers, newcomer Jared Hughes was the lone bright spot on the staff posting his best ERA at 1.94 while leading the bullpen in innings pitched.
With new manager David Bell at the helm, the Reds saw an eight-win increase in 2019. Unfortunately, that only put them at 75-87, good for fourth place in the National League Central. After digging themselves a hole in 2018 by starting 3-18, the Reds got out of the gates slowly once again in 2019 with a 1-8 start. They tried to play catch-up from there and scuffled their way to 56-59 in early August, but never were able to climb back to .500. The season’s biggest bright spots were starting pitchers Luis Castillo and first-year Red Sonny Gray. Castillo turned in a phenomenal first half of the season, going 8-3 with a 2.29 ERA while earning an All-Star nod. Sonny Gray was named an NL All-Star as well after a strong first half, but the newcomer really found his groove in the second half. Gray went 6-3 with 2.12 ERA in his final 14 starts and finished seventh in Cy Young voting. While Castillo and Gray got much of the attention, Anthony DeSclafani looked like the pitcher the Reds saw pre-injury in 2016 and turned in a 3.49 ERA in the season’s second half. The Reds were setting up nicely for 2020 with their arms and their rotation was bolstered further with the trade deadline addition of Trevor Bauer. Offensively, the story of the year was Eugenio Suárez. The third baseman erupted for 49 home runs, the most ever by a Venezuelan-born player and the third highest total by a player in Reds history. While Suárez’s power captured the attention of Reds Country all year long, the 2019 Reds season cannot be told without mentioning the historic run by rookie Aristides Aquino. “The Punisher” burst on the scene in August with 14 home runs and 33 RBIs and was named the National League Player of the Month and National League Rookie of the Month.
Faced with a unique season shortened to 60 games by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Reds rallied back from a slow start to finish above .500 at 31-29 and reach their first postseason since 2013. Cincinnati finally had its first Cy Young Award winner in Trevor Bauer, who was 5-4 with an NL-best 1.73 ERA over 11 starts and 73 innings. Bauer also led the league in WHIP (0.79), opponents’ batting average (.159), opponents’ BABIP (.215), adjusted ERA+ (276), fewest hits-per nine innings (5.06). Catcher Tucker Barnhart earned his second Gold Glove award for excellence on defense.
In the prior offseason, the Reds spent big with $166 million worth of contracts to free agents that included second baseman Mike Moustakas, right fielder Nick Castellanos and their first Japanese big league player, outfielder Shogo Akiyama. The offensive improvements didn’t help the club as it finished last in the Majors with a .212 average. But on the backs of the rotation, led by Bauer, Sonny Gray and Luis Castillo, Cincinnati won 11 of its last 14 games and its final five series of the regular season. Alas, disappointment came in the NL Wild Card Series vs. Atlanta as the Reds were swept in two games and failed to score over all 22 innings played. This despite an epic 7 ⅔ inning, two-hit and 12 strikeouts performance by Bauer in Game 1 -- which ended in a 1-0 loss in 13 innings.
The Reds contended for the postseason into the season’s final month before a stark fade down the stretch left them to finish with an 83-79 record and outside of the playoff picture. But there were several notable performances throughout the season that stood out.
Jonathan India went from Minor League camper to Opening Day second baseman to fan favorite and National League Rookie of the Year after he batted .269/.376/.459 with 21 home runs and 69 RBIs in 150 games. India moved into the leadoff spot on June 5, and became an offensive catalyst that contributed to the success of others in the lineup.
Nick Castellanos and Jesse Winker became first-time All-Stars and were voted as NL starters in the outfield. Castellanos batted .309/.362/.576 with a career-high 34 home runs plus 38 doubles and 100 RBIs. Winker had a breakout year as he slashed .305/.394/.556 and set career high marks with 24 home runs, 32 doubles, 77 runs and 71 RBIs. That included not one, but two, games where he delivered three homers. But he was limited to 110 games – and only one after Aug. 15 -- because of an intercostal injury.
Perhaps the most enjoyable years was had by the longest-tenured Red, Joey Votto. During his age-37 season, Votto bounced back from a few down years as he slugged 36 homers with 99 RBIs and reached career milestones with 2,000 hits, 300 homers and 1,000 RBIs in the same season. The ‘21 season also saw the emergence of rookie catcher Tyler Stephenson, utility player-turned-shortstop Kyle Farmer and outfielder Tyler Naquin.
On the mound, veteran left-hander Wade Miley was the club’s best pitcher with a 3.37 ERA in 28 starts. That included the first no-hitter of Miley’s career during a 3-0 win at Cleveland on May 7.
The 2022 season featured a rookie-influenced roster. Although the season ended with a 62-100 record, it laid the groundwork for growth and displayed considerable pitching talent.
For the second time in just three years (2020 did not feature an All-Star Game due to the truncated season caused by the COVID-19 pandemic), pitcher Luis Castillo was named an All-Star. Earning a 2.86 ERA, Castillo boasted an impressive set of credentials, especially considering he spent the first month of the season on the injured list due to his shoulder.
Rookie relief pitcher Alexis Díaz was awarded the team’s Johnny Vander Meer Most Outstanding Pitcher Award. Díaz was 7-3 with a 1.84 ERA and 10 saves in 59 games.
Other rookie pitchers Graham Ashcraft, Hunter Greene and Nick Lodolo showed signs that considerable player development was in the works. Greene, who is known for his fastball’s velocity, showed progress in his control. Lodolo pitched 103 innings with 131 strikeouts and a 3.66 ERA. Ashcraft proved his ability to keep up with his fellow rookies, earning a 4.89 ERA and 71 strikeouts from his 105 innings pitched.
Expected to be in the early stages of a rebuild, the Reds were a surprise contender all the way to the final weekend of the season. Their 82-80 finish left them just outside of the postseason but was a 20-win improvement from 2022. It was a season that saw the youth movement taking their opportunity and running with it as top prospects like Elly De La Cruz, Matt McLain, Christian Encarnacion-Strand, Andrew Abbott and Brandon Williamson arrived mid-season assumed key roles along with other younger players like Spencer Steer, TJ Friedl and Jake Fraley. Rookie pitchers made 61 starts while rookie hitters produced 68 homers and 238 RBIs – the most ever by Major League rookies, according to Elias Sports.
Manager David Bell, who received a three-year contract extension in July, took advantage of having a more athletic roster by being aggressive on the bases to manufacture runs. Cincinnati led the Major Leagues with 190 stolen bases and were also tied for the league lead with 48 come-from-behind wins. The club also rolled with a 12-game win streak in June that tied their franchise modern record set in 1957.