Dave Concepcion

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There are a lot of interesting things of note about a sometimes unheralded member of “The Big Red Machine,”  Dave Concepcion.

  • Played his entire 19 year career as a Cincinnati Red
  • Was originally drafted as a pitcher but was converted to shortstop
  • Pitched in one game of his major league career – June 3, 1988 against the Dodgers.  Concepcion threw 22 pitches in 1.1 innings of relief.  Sixteen of the twenty-two were strikes.
  • Elected to the All Star team nine times
  • Five time Gold Glove winner
  • The Venezuelan born Concepcion was a big influence on younger Venezuelan players, including Ozzie Guillen, who wore # 13 in his honor.

But there’s one more interesting fact that you might not know about.  Concepcion was the first player to utilize the one bounce throw to first.  Concepcion realized that he could use the speed of the turf to his advantage and worked with Tony Perez to perfect this innovative throwing technique.

  

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May 12, 2010 | E-mail | Comments (0) | Comment RSSRSS comment feed

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Reds Uniform History

 

As the original professional baseball team the Reds have an extensive and interesting uniform history.  We love a lot of the old jerseys that you’ll see below but we haven’t made many of these recently.  What do you think, should we bring some of these back?

1938 Road Jersey

We like this one for it’s fancy block letters on the front.  It’s a lettering style that we don’t usually associate with the Reds but we think it works.  The Cincinnati is red with blue trim and there is red piping around the sleeves and neck.   This uniform was worn by Johnny Vander Meer in 1938, his first full season with the Reds.  During that season Vander Meer accomplished one of those feats that will most likely never be repeated.  He pitched two no hitters in one season.  What makes it even more remarkable is that they were only five days apart.  In the first game he topped the Boston Braves at home at Crosley Field.  For no hitter #2, he beat the Dodgers in Brooklyn.   

 

1956 Home Vest

1956 brought the biggest change to the Reds uniform in 20 years.  In 1956 the Reds switched from the traditional short sleeve jersey to vests for both their home and road uniforms.  They wore  vests through the 1966 season, switching back to the short sleeve jersey in 1967.

At the left is the first vest, the 1956 home.

And pictured below is the 1956 road, which we love for the “Old Red” cartoon face on the left chest. Click the image to see a larger view.


 

1961 Road Vest 

In 1961, the Reds added navy braid around the vest sleeve holes.  The braid in this image to the left looks black, but from we can tell, we think it was actually navy.  Modeling below is Sammy Ellis who pitched for the Reds in 1962 and 1964 – 66.

1964 Home Vest
 
 

In 1964 the Reds added their names under the numbers on the back of the vest.  The image to the right is Ellis
again, this time from 1966.

So, any thoughts on these jerseys?  Let us know if you think we should bring any of these back.

 

 

 

May 11, 2010 | E-mail | Comments (1) | Comment RSSRSS comment feed

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The Red Stockings, Baseball and Beer

Week 2 of our baseball promotion focuses on the first professional baseball team, the Cincinnati Reds.  Throughout the week we will feature stories on the Reds history, their players and a few other things that we think you might find interesting.  Today, we take a look at the origins of the Reds and the game of baseball.


In the middle part of the 1800’s, baseball was becoming the country’s most popular recreational activity.  Soldiers in the Civil War palyed and brought the game home with them after the war.  There were amateur teams all around the country, with the biggest being the Cincinnati Baseball Club.  Harry Wright was a member of the Cincinnati club and was a catalyst in making the team the first professional club.  They built their own stadium, advertised their games and sold tickets for twenty five cents.

 

 

In 1896, with success at home, the Red Stockings decided that it was time to take the show on the road.  They traveled the country by rail and stagecoach, playing amateur teams in cities throughout the U.S.  The tour was working as crowds of thousands began to show up to get a look at the first all professional sports team.  The Red Stockings were dominating their opponents with scores of 103 – 8 and 94 – 7.  They didn’t drop a game, finishing 52 – 0, the only time that’s happened in the history of the game.   

 

 

The Red Stockings lost their first game in mid 1870 to the New York Atlantics and they proceeded to lose a few more.  By this time, team President Aaron Champion was tired of traveling the country for no salary and decided at the end of the season to return to a career in law.  Boston native Harry Wright opted to start a team in his hometown and the rest of the Red Stockings headed east with him.  There was no baseball in Cincinnati for six years.

 

 

In 1876 the Red Stockings joined what was then called the National League, the first major league.  The league consisted of teams in Chicago, Louisville, St. Louis, New York, Hartford, Boston and Philadelphia.  Unfortunately the Red Stockings got off to a slow start, finishing their debut season with a 9 – 56 record.


The team continued to struggle through the early years but there was one thing that kept the fans happy.  Beer.  There were several breweries in the Queen City and they sold lots of beer to the stadium, even though the league did not approve of or encourage beer sales.  In 1880 the club moved to a new stadium called the Bank Street Grounds in downtown Cincinnati.  The league ordered them to stop selling beer but owner Josiah Koeck continued to ignore their mandates.  The league finally had enough and kicked the Red Stockings out of the league.

 

Cincinnati was once again without baseball.

 

 

We love the look of these old Red Stockings jerseys and have made them before but we haven’t made them in awhile.  Should we bring them back?


(George Wirght, one of the stars
of the Red Stockings - shortstop,
Baseball Hall of Fame 1937)

May 10, 2010 | E-mail | Comments (0) | Comment RSSRSS comment feed

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