September 28, 1894: Reds pitcher Tom Parrott plays his only game at second base for the Reds and hits for the cycle in a Reds 9-8 loss to the New York Giants. Parrott played four major league seasons, three mainly as a pitcher for the Reds and one mainly as an outfielder for the St. Louis Browns. He finishes his career with a career 39-48 record with a 5.33 ERA (96 ERA+) while batting .301 with a .768 OPS (96 OPS+).
September 28, 1939: Paul Derringer does the heavy lifting as he pitches a complete game and delivers a sacrifice fly to drive in the game deciding run as the Reds clinch their first pennant since 1919. The Reds beat the second place St. Louis Cardinals, 5-3, in the game.
Derringer improved his record to 25-7 with the win. He allowed 14 hits and the Reds committed three errors in the game, but he struck out sluggers Joe Medwick and Johnny Mize to end the game. Cardinals starter Max Lanier only lasted 2/3 of an inning, allowing 1 hit, two walks, and two runs before replacing by eventual losing pitcher, Curt Davis (22-16) who pitched six 1/3 innings of relief for the Cardinals.
Harry Craft’s eighth inning home run added insurance for the Reds.
September 28, 1957: Johnny Klippstein fires a one-hitter, walking one and striking out five, in defeating Warren Spahn and the Milwaukee Braves, 4-0. The only hit allowed by Klippstein is a two-out single to Bob “Hurricane” Hazle in the eighth inning.
The one-hitter is Klippstein’s only shut out of the year. For the season, Klippstein goes 8-11 with a 5.05 ERA as a swing man for the Redlegs. He started 18 games and relieved in 26 others. Klippstein pitched 18 major league seasons (101-118, 4.24 ERA), five years with the Redlegs (39-40, 4.27). Don Hoak had three hits and four rbi for the Redlegs on his way to a .291 season where he led the league with 39 doubles. He also hit 19 homers to drive in 89 runs (OPS+ 125).
Hurricane Hazle’s 1957 is one of the most famous “cups of coffee” of all time. Hazle had a brief 1955 trial with the Redlegs, going 3-13 in six games, but he caught lightning in a bottle for the 1957 Braves. In 41 games, Hazle batted .403 with seven homers, 12 doubles, 27 rbi, a .477 OBP, and a .649 SLP for a 1.126 OPS (209 OPS+). The 26-year-old rookie played so well in his short-time, that he finished fourth in rookie of the year balloting despite only playing 41 games.
Hazle’s superb end of season play helped the Braves win the pennant with an eight-game victory over the St. Louis Cardinals and defeat the New York Yankees in seven games in the 1957 World Series. Hazle’s hurricane quickly lost energy, though. He batted .179 in 20 games for the Braves in 1958 and was sold to the Detroit Tigers, for whom he batted .241 in 43 games and 63 plate appearances as a pinch hitter. He played a couple of more years in the minors before retiring. He played 110 major league games and batted .310 (134 OPS+).
September 28, 1979: Frank Pastore fires a four-hit shutout as the Reds clinch the 1979 National League Western Division Championship with a 2-0 win over the Atlanta Braves.
Pastore went the distance, walking one and striking out seven in improving his record to 6-7. The Reds had gotten on the board with a second inning home run by Cesar Geronimo; the Reds other run came in the fifth when Dave Collins singled home Geronimo who had tripled with one out.
The 1979 Reds won the Western Division by 1 1/2 games over the Houston Astros before being swept in three games by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the League Championship Series. The Reds’ offense was led by George Foster who batted .302 with 30 homers and 98 rbi (155 OPS+) in only 121 games. Tom Seaver was the leading pitcher with a 16-6 record and a 3.14 ERA. He finished fourth in Cy Young voting that season.
September 28, 1985: Tom Browning becomes the first rookie to win 20 games in a season in 31 years in a Reds 5-2 win over the Houston Astros.
Browning’s 20th victory is his 11th consecutive win of the season. As a rookie, Browning is 20-9 with a 3.55 ERA. He finished second to the St. Louis Cardinals’ Vince Coleman in the Rookie of the Year balloting. Coleman stole 110 bases, his first of six consecutive seasons of the leading the league in steals. Browning is the first rookie to win 20 games since the Yankees’ Bob Grim in 1954 (20-6), and the first National Leaguer since Harvey Haddix (20-9) and the St. Louis Cardinals in 1953. None of the three would win 20 games in a season ever again.
September 28, 1999: The Reds take sole possession of first place with a 4-1 victory over eventual the eventual National League Central champions Houston Astros. It was the Reds sixth straight win to move them into first, but they would lost four of their last five games to end the regular season.
1999 was Casey’s best season as he batted .332 with 25 homers and 99 rbi (132 OPS+). Harnisch finished the season 16-10 with a 3.68 ERA (128 ERA+).