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Johnny Bench

From Academic Kids

Johnny Lee Bench (born December 7, 1947), is a former professional baseball player.

Born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States, he grew up to become a professional baseball player who spent his entire 17 season major league career with the Cincinnati Reds, and was a key part of the dominating "Big Red Machine" that won the World Series in 1975 and 1976, when Bench was named the World Series MVP. Some consider him to be the best catcher ever to play the game.

Coming up with the Cincinnati Reds' organization, his promise was immediately apparent, winning him the 1968 NL Rookie of the Year. Bench was a solid power hitter, and his great defensive skill won him 10 Gold Gloves as well as the NL MVP award in 1970 and again in 1972. Bench was recognized for his on and off-field accomplishments with baseball's Lou Gehrig Award (1975), Babe Ruth Award (1976), and Hutch Award (1981) during his career. The 14-time All-Star slugged 389 career home runs, and held the record for most home runs by a catcher (a record since broken by Carlton Fisk and Mike Piazza). He was elected to the United States Baseball Hall of Fame in 1989, appearing on 96% of the ballots.

He was inducted into the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame in 1986.

Starting with the 2000 college baseball season, the best collegiate catcher anually receives the Johnny Bench Award.

Trivia

Valedictorian of his high school Author of several books Starred on "The Baseball Bunch" with the San Diego Chicken on Cincinnati TV

External links

  • Johnny Bench's career statistics at Baseball-Reference.com (http://www.baseball-reference.com/b/benchjo01.shtml)
  • Link to Bench's page on the Baseball Hall of Fame website (http://www.baseballhalloffame.org/hofers_and_honorees/hofer_bios/bench_johnny.htm)
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