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Today In Brewer History: Happy Birthday, Gregg Zaun and Jesse Levis

Two retired former Brewer catchers were born exactly three years apart.

Jeff Gross

On this day in 1968, Jesse Levis was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He went to college at North Carolina before the Indians drafted him in the fourth round in 1989 and was a big leaguer for Cleveland for the first time in 1992.

After parts of four seasons as an Indian, Levis was traded to Milwaukee in spring of 1996 and spent three light-hitting years there. Levis' most valuable season as a Brewer was probably 1997, when he appeared in 99 games and hit .285/.361/.335. Levis finished his career with 237 games as a Brewer, and his 182 games caught are the 16th most in franchise history.

Then, on this day in 1971 Gregg Zaun was born in Glendale, California. He was drafted by the Orioles in 1989 and made his big league debut in 1995, launching a long and wandering major league career. He had been an Oriole, Marlin (where he won a World Series in 1997), Ranger, Royal, Astro, Rockie, Blue Jay, Oriole again and Ray when the Brewers signed him as a free agent before the 2010 season.

Zaun was 39 for most of his Brewer career, which was brief. He appeared in just 28 games and hit .265/.350/.392 before suffering a career-ending injury. Nonetheless, Zaun finished his career with 1067 major league games behind the plate, the 90th most in history.

Thanks to the B-Ref Play Index for reminding me that Zaun turns 42 and Levis turns 45 today. With help from, we'd also like to wish a happy birthday to:

Today is also the 13th anniversary of a trade with the Cubs that brought reliever Ray King to Milwaukee, and the 20th anniversary of Graeme Lloyd and Dave Nilsson becoming the first Australian battery in major league history. We covered those events in this space last year and two years ago, respectively.