On this day in 2005 the Reds crushed the Brewers at Miller Park, scoring multiple runs in four different innings en route to an 11-4 victory. The game was already well out of hand in the seventh inning when rookie outfielder Nelson Cruz entered the contest as a defensive replacement, but he picked up his first major league hit, a double, later in the game. He also scored his first MLB run in the contest.
It feels like a lifetime ago now, but eight years ago Cruz was a pretty anonymous minor leaguer. The Brewers were his third organization, and he'd come to Milwaukee as one of two players dealt for infielder Keith Ginter. He appeared in just eight games as a September callup in 2005, and the hit mentioned above was his only one in seven plate appearances. He wouldn't get back to the big leagues until after being sent to the Rangers as part of the Carlos Lee deal in 2006.
Cruz's career has, of course, grown by leaps and bounds since then. He scuffled out of the gate for Texas but was an All Star in 2009 and again in 2013 and has hit 22 or more homers in five consecutive seasons. Recently, though, he's better known for having been one of the players suspended in the BioGenesis scandal. He'll be a free agent this winter and could be one of the offseason's more interesting stories.
- 2013 Huntsville Star Micah Owings, who turns 31.
- 2006 Brewer Chris Demaria, who turns 33.
- 2001-03 Brewer Mike DeJean, who turns 43.
- 1996-99 Brewer Brian Banks, who turns 43.
- Milwaukee native Todd Frohwirth, who turns 51. Frohwirth played in nine MLB seasons between 1987-96 as a member of the Orioles and three other teams.
Today is also the 112th anniversary of the final game for the 1901 Milwaukee Brewers and the fifth anniversary of Ryan Braun's home run to beat the Cubs and help propel the Brewers to the 2008 Wild Card. We covered those events in this space last year and two years ago.