On Wednesday night, the Cincinnati Reds defeated the Chicago Cubs, 4-1, at Great American Ballpark, their fourth win in a row over the North Siders, and fifth consecutive overall. With the win, the Reds moved to within three games of the first-place Milwaukee Brewers, and left LeBron reconsidering the whole Miami-or-Cleveland thing. After all, at seven-games over .500, the Reds are looking pretty good to lots of folks these days.
Of all the guys to wear number 7 for the Reds through the years, Paul Householder was the first one that I ever really took notice of. There he was on my baseball cards, having fun on the ball field, shaggy hair curling out from under his helmet, cool name. He must have been a star, right?
Well, I’m sure he was a star to his parents and siblings (if any) and SO (if any), but not so much for the Reds. In parts of five seasons on the Riverfront, Householder never reached double-digit dingers, and only batted above .255 in the strike-shortened 1981 campaign. Nevertheless, we has the team’s regular right fielder in 1982 and 1983, arguably the darkest years the franchise has seen.
In 1984, Dave Parker came to town, and Householder exited. Three years later, he was out of baseball at the age of 28, having OPSed at just .667 for his career.
Because he epitomized the Reds of my youth, though, Paul Householder is our Mr. Number 7 today, with an honorable mention to current number 7 Ramon Santiago. He’s pictured above and will probably see some playing time now that injuries are mounting.
Here’s to the Reds’ lucky number(s) seven!