REDS HALL OF FAME ANNOUNCES CLASS OF 2012
Sean Casey, Dan Driessen and the late John Reilly to be inducted June 22-24
CINCINNATI (November 28, 2011) – Three-time All-Star Sean Casey, Big Red Machine infielder Dan Driessen and 19th century first baseman John Reilly will be the next three players inducted into the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame.
Casey was selected by the fans through the Modern Player Ballot presented by Cincyfavorites.com. The Veterans Committee selected Driessen and Reilly to make up the Reds Hall of Fame Class of 2012.
The trio will be honored June 22-24 during Reds Hall of Fame Induction Weekend, which will include on-field ceremonies at Great American Ball Park, the star-studded Hall of Fame Induction Gala and a variety of festivities at the Hall, including meet and greets with Reds Hall of Famers and alumni.
One of the most popular players to ever wear a Reds uniform, Casey came to be known as “The Mayor” during his eight-year Reds career.
A versatile infielder of the Big Red Machine clubs of the 1970s, Dreissen played 12 seasons for the Reds from 1973 to 1984.
A Cincinnati-native and dominant first baseman in the 1880’s, Reilly wore a Reds uniform for his nine-season Major League career and held Reds records for most singles, double, triples, home runs, runs scored, RBI and games played.
Casey was the top vote-getter of the thousands of ballots cast online at RedsMuseum.org, at Great American Ball Park and at participating Skyline Chili and Montgomery Inn locations.
Driessen and Reilly were selected by the Reds Hall of Fame’s Veterans Committee, comprised of members of the media, Hall of Famers, historians and Hall of Fame executives.
“Since 1958, the fans have played an integral part in the Hall of Fame election process, and this year was no exception as record participation resulted,” said Reds Hall of Fame Executive Director Rick Walls. “I’d like to thank Cincyfavorites.com, the thousands of fans that voted, and the Veterans Committee for recognizing the contributions of these players.”
The addition of Casey, Driessen and Reilly will bring the Hall’s membership ranks to 75 players, three managers, and three executives.
Sean Casey (First Baseman, 1998-2005)
One of the most popular players to ever wear a Reds uniform, first baseman Sean Casey came to be known as “The Mayor” during his eight-year Reds career. Acquired by the Reds on the eve of Opening Day in 1998, Casey overcame a serious eye injury and established himself as the club’s starting first baseman and would remain in that position for the next seven seasons. A lifetime .305 hitter as a Red, Casey eclipsed the .300 mark five times during his Reds career, posting a career-best .332 average in 1999. Casey was one of the offensive forces of the 1999 Reds, a club that won 96 games and fell just one win short of securing a playoff berth. For the 1999 season, Casey led the Reds in batting average, hits, doubles, on-base percentage and slugging percentage. During his Reds career, Casey ranked in the league’s top ten in batting average three times and was the Reds batting average leader in six of his seven seasons as a starter. Only twelve players in Reds history posted higher career batting averages than Casey’s .305 mark. A three-time National League All-Star, Casey was also the 1999 winner of Major League Baseball’s Hutch Award, was twice the recipient of the Reds’ Joe Nuxhall Good Guy Award and was the 2004 winner of the Reds’ Most Valuable Player Award.
Dan Driessen (First Baseman/Third Baseman, 1973-1984)
A versatile member of Cincinnati’s Big Red Machine clubs of the 1970s, Dan Driessen was signed by the Reds as an 18-year-old, undrafted free agent in 1969. In his Major League debut season of 1973, Driessen’s .301 average helped propel the Reds to the Western Division title and earned him a third place finish in National League Rookie of the Year voting. Over the next three seasons, Driessen excelled at multiple positions for Reds teams that averaged over 100 victories a season and won back-to-back World Championships in 1975 and 1976. In the 1976 World Series, Driessen became the first designated hitter in National League history and hit .357 in the Reds sweep of the Yankees. In 1977, Driessen became the Reds everyday first baseman and enjoyed his finest offensive season, batting .300 with 17 home runs, 91 RBI and 31 stolen bases. One of the finest defensive first basemen of his era, Driessen led the National League in fielding percentage three times and shares the Reds all-time single season record for fielding percentage at the position. A member of the Reds from 1973 to 1984, only eight players in history have appeared in more games as a Red than Driessen.
John Reilly (First Baseman, 1883-1891)
The Reds starting first baseman from 1883 to 1891, John Reilly was the club’s leading hitter for most of the 1880’s and paced the club in home runs, RBI and batting average with a .301 mark. At 6’3”, Reilly was tall for his era, earning him the moniker “Long John” years before he played his first professional game. A Cincinnati native, Reilly wore a Reds uniform for his nine-season Major League career. Reilly held single-season Reds records in numerous offensive categories including most doubles, triples, home runs, RBI and slugging percentage at multiple points in his career. When he retired after the 1891 season, Reilly held Reds records for most singles, double, triples, home runs, runs scored, RBI and games played. While all of these records have since been broken, Reilly remains one of only four players in Reds history to lead the league in home runs twice. Reilly died in Cincinnati on May 31, 1937 at the age of 78.
About the Reds Hall of Fame:
Established in 1958, The Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame is the oldest continually operating team Hall of Fame in all of baseball. The Reds Hall of Fame & Museum features 15,000 square feet of historical, interactive and educational exhibits, highlighting the rich and storied tradition of the Cincinnati Reds. The mission of the Reds Hall of Fame & Museum is to celebrate greatness, preserve history and provide inspiration.