On July 21, 2007, P.J. Phillips went 3-5 at the plate with his ninth HR of the season, two RBI, a walk and scored a run as the Cedar Rapids Kernels defeated the Clinton Lumberkings 6-4. P.J. Phillips hit .245 with 11 doubles, 13 HR, 37 RBI and stole 34 bases in 119 games during the 2007 season for the Kernels. Phillips was selected to play in the 2007 Midwest League All-Star game. Cedar Rapids finished the season with a 78-61 record under manager Ever Magallanes. The Kernels lost to the Clinton Lumberkings in the first round of the Midwest League Playoffs.
P.J. Phillips was signed by the Cincinnati Reds prior to the 2012 season after being released by the Angels after six seasons. Phillips is hitting .197 with 1 HR and 12 RBI in 62 games playing for the Pensacola Blue Wahoos (AA) in 2012.
P.J. Phillips is the younger brother of Cincinnati Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips.
This is my 8th season (2005-present) working as the stadium operations guy here with the Cedar Rapids Kernels. I will be reminiscing the best performances by the Kernels during my tenure to add to my This Date in Kernels Alumni History features this year.
On May 20, 1988, Scott Scudder pitched the ninth no-hitter in Cedar Rapids Midwest League baseball history to lead the Cedar Rapids Reds to a 4-0 win over the Wausau Timbers. Scudder and the Reds went on to win the 1988 Midwest League Championship defeating Springfield and Kenosha in the playoffs.
Scott Scudder, the Reds first round draft pick in the 1986 draft, pitched for the 1987 and 1988 Cedar Rapids Reds squads. He posted a 7-12 mark with a 4.10 E.R.A. in 1987 striking out 128 batters in 153 2/3 innings of work. He returned to Cedar Rapids in 1988 to post a 7-3 record with a 2.02 E.R.A. in 16 games before earning a mid-season promotion to Chattanooga.
Scott Scudder made his MLB debut on June 6, 1989 for the Cincinnati Reds. Scudder appeared in two playoff games during the Cincinnati Reds 1990 World Series Championship run. He was acquired by the Cleveland Indians along with Joe Turek and Jack Armstrong in exchange for Greg Swindell on November 15, 1991. Scudder compiled a career mark of 21-34 with a 4.80 E.R.A. during his five seasons with the Reds and the Indians.
Scott Scudder served as a coach for Swedish National team during the 2010 European Championships.
Ron Plaza, a Minor League roving instructor for the Oakland A’s, passed away Sunday at the age of 77 in St. Petersburg, Fla., where he had recently suffered a series of small strokes and was being treated at a rehab nursing home. Plaza had spent over 60 years in professional baseball as a player, coach and manager in the Cardinals, Reds and Athletics systems.
Ron Plaza managed the Cedar Rapids Cardinals in 1965 and 1966. The 1965 Cardinals set a Midwest League record by winning 17 consecutive games (July3-July19). Plaza’s 1966 squad held the best record in the Midwest League at 81-40. The Cardinals fell to Fox Cities in the Midwest League Championship Series (2-1).
Ron Plaza was named Florida State League manager of the year in 1967 and worked as a base coach for the Seattle Pilots in 1969. Plaza’s minor league playing career spanned 12 seasons including six at AAA. He was inducted into the Cedar Rapids Professional Baseball Hall of Fame in 2007.
On November 7, 1997, Larry Rothschild (Cedar Rapids Reds pitching coach / Reds pitching instructor) was named the first manager of the expansion Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Rothschild had earned World Series rings with the Cincinnati Reds in 1990 (bullpen coach) and the Florida Marlins in 1997 (pitching coach). The Devil Rays compiled a 205-294 record under Rothschild from 1998-2001.
Rothschild served as the Chicago Cubs pitching coach from 2002-2009 before joining the New York Yankees as their pitching coach in 2010.
Rothschild was the pitching instructor for A and AA teams for the Cincinnati Reds in 1986 and 1987 before becoming the Reds minor league roving pitching instructor for the 1988 and 1989 seasons.
I guess I just can’t give up the ‘dig’ for random Cedar Rapids alumni history. There won’t be game info during the offseason, but I will attempt to continue my quest with transaction reports, award announcements and any type of tie in I can find.
On November 6, 1987, the Cincinnati Reds traded right-handed pitcher Ted Power and shortstop Kurt Stillwell (Cedar Rapids Reds – 1984) to the Royals for shortstop Angel Salazar and left-hander Danny Jackson. Jackson finished as the runner-up for the N.L. Cy Young award in 1988.
Kurt Stillwell hit .249 with 34 HR and 310 RBI in his 9 season in Major League Baseball. Stillwell played for the Reds, Royals, Padres, Angels and Rangers. He was named to the 1988 All-Star team in his 1st season in the American League with the Royals.
Kurt Stillwell was part of the 1984 Cedar Rapids Reds team that finished 4th with a mark of 75-63 under manager Jim Lett. Stillwell hit .251 with 4 HR, 33 RBI and stole 24 bases in 112 games.
On October 19, 1990, Chris Sabo (Cedar Rapids Reds – 1990) went 2-4 at the plate with two HR, three RBI and a walk as the Cincinnati Reds defeated the Oakland Athletics 8-3 in game three of the 1990 World Series.
Chris Sabo, the 1988 N.L. Rookie of the year and a three-time all-star, hit .268 with 166 HR and 426 RBI during his nine year MLB career playing for the Cincinnati Reds, Baltimore Orioles, Chicago White Sox, and the St. Louis Cardinals. Sabo batted .563 with 2 HR as the Reds won the 1990 World Series.
Chris Sabo hit .274 with 12 HR in 77 games for the 1983 Cedar Rapids Reds team that finished with a mark of 76-64 under manager Bruce Kimm’s guidance. The Reds fell in the opening round of the playoffs to Springfield.
On October 18, 1972, Denis Menke (Cedar Rapids Braves – 1958-59) went 1-2 with a walk and a sacrifice at the plate as the Cincinnati Reds topped the Oakland Athletics 1-0 in game three of the 1972 World Series. The winning run scored from second following Menke’s sacrifice hit in the seventh inning.
Denis Menke was named to two All-Star teams in 1969 and 1970 as member of the Houston Astros. He played in the post season twice in 1972 and 1973 with the Cincinnati Reds and hit a home run off Oakland’s Catfish Hunter in Game 5 of the 1972 World Series. In 13 major league seasons with the Braves, Reds and Astros, he has a career .250 average with 101 HR and 606 RBI. Following his playing career, he managed three minor league seasons with the Burlington Bees in 1977 and the Dunedin Blue Jays in 1978-79 and served as the Astros’ hitting coach for six seasons. Menke was inducted into the Cedar Rapids Baseball Hall of Fame in 2009.
Denis Menke played two seasons (1958-59) with the Cedar Rapids Braves, posting a combined .254 average with nine HR and 31 RBI in 102 games. As a member of the 1958 Braves, he teamed with future major leaguers Bobby Knoop, Bob Hendley and Bob ‘Hawk’ Taylor and fellow Hall of Famer Horace Garner to defeat Davenport 3-2 and win the 1958 Three-I League championship.
On October 16, 1990, Eric Davis (Cedar Rapids Reds – 1982) went 2-4 at the plate with a HR, three RBI and scored a pair of runs as the Cincinnati Reds defeated the Oakland Athletics 7-0 in game one of the 1990 World Series. The Reds went on to sweep the series in four games.
Eric Davis hit .269 with 282 home runs, 934 RBI and stole 349 bases during his 17 year career playing for the Reds, Dodgers, Tigers, Orioles, Cardinals and Giants. Davis hit for the cycle on June 2, 1989 to lead the Reds to a 9-4 win over the Padres. He was the first Red to hit for cycle since Frank Robinson did it in 1959.
Davis was part of the 1982 Cedar Rapids Reds squad that finished in 9th place with a mark of 61-79 under manager Randy Davidson. Eric Davis hit .276 with 15 home runs, 56 RBI and stole 53 bases for the Cedar Rapids Reds that season.
On October 2, 1988, Keith Brown (Cedar Rapids Reds– 1987) worked seven shutout innings to lead the Cincinnati Reds to a 2-0 win over the Atlanta Braves at Riverfront Stadium. Brown allowed five hits and one walk in the victory while tallying one strkeout.
Keith Brown posted a 2-2 record and a 3.40 E.R.A. during his four season career playing for the Reds.
Keith Brown was a member of the 1987 Cedar Rapids Reds squad that posted a 70-70 record under the guidance of manager Paul Kirsch. Brown went 13-4 with a 1.59 E.R.A. in 17 games for the Reds. He struck out 86 batters in 124 1/3 innings of work.
Willie Greene hit .234 with 86 HR and 307 RBI during his 9 year career playing for the Reds, Orioles, Blue Jays and Cubs.
Willie Greene was a member of the 1992 Cedar Rapids Reds team that finished 82-56 under manager Mark Berry. The Reds topped Quad Cities in the opening round and defeated Beloit in the Championship series to take the Midwest League title. Greene hit .283 with 12 HR, 8 doubles and 40 RBI in 34 games for the Cedar Rapids Reds.