Sunday, March 29, 2015

#611 Rich Reese

A once platooning first baseman for Twins was given more playing time.... for a while at least …Had a monster year in 1969 and but his numbers declined since then…As a whole his career alternated between Detroit and Twins…But mostly a Twin….First signed by the Tigers…taken by Twin after one year…coming a year later than Ted Uhlander, Rich gradually gained playing time at 1st base…Became a semi regular in 1968 essentially replacing a hobbled Harmon Killebrew….Harmon’s move, albeit temporary, to 3rd in 1969 paved the way to his career year….Hit .322 with 16 home runs, 69 RBIs in 419 At bats…Season highlight was hitting a pinch hit grand slam against Dave McNally to break his 17 game win streak on August 3rd…would have finished second in BA if he had 51 more At Bats….Got that bump in playing time during 1970 but production faltered namely his BA dropped by 60 points….The start of slide from which he never recovered…The organization’s realization that Killebrew’s 3rd base fielding was a liability brought the Killer back to 1st ,  largely cutting into Reese’s 1971 playing time….result was another large drop in BA settling to .219…same scenario was reprised in 1972 in a .218 BA but with a loss of another 100 Abs…sold to Tigers for 1973 but went .137 in 102 AB…released and returned to Twins for a swan song of nearly two dozen games…during his playing was Hamm’s beer sales representative in the off season.

1 comment:

  1. Sometimes I find out things after I publish. Rich does share an all time record. He has three pinch hit grand slams one each in 1969, 1970, 1972. He tied for AL and MLB mark, sharing with Willie McCovey, Ben Broussard, and 1940's player Ron Northey.