It’s Christmas in July, Reds fans! After downing the Chicago Cubs last night by a score of 9-3 , the Cincinnati Reds find themselves back to four games over .500 with less than a week remaining until the All-Star break. They’re not in the playoffs yet, but every game won gives Cincinnati a better chance of seeing October baseball.
But right now, it’s July, and we’re four over, so we need the guy who matches up well with that combination. Of all the players who have worn number four for the Reds over the years, one fella stands out immediately from the rest: Steve Christmas.
Christmas played all of nine games for the Reds in 1983, his rookie campaign, and posted an OPS+ of -54. That’s MINUS 54, in case you missed the inflection in the raw number there. He managed, somehow, to parlay that gaudy performance into two more Major League stints: one with the Chicago White Sox in 1984, and, yes, one with the cross-town Cubs in 1986. Longtime baseball fans might remember 1985 as the year there was no Christmas.
So, Steve Christmas really has it all as far as this contrivance of a blog post goes: he wore number 4 for the Reds; he posted an unbelievable (and) offensive season in 1983, and he played for the Cubs, whom the Reds just defeated.
And yes, oh yes, his name is “Steve Christmas.”
He is our Number 4, and it’s Christmas in July on the Riverfront.