image source: ESPN
Today, the Cincinnati Reds announced they will retire shortstop legend Dave Concepcion's number 13.
As mentioned in previous blogs, I grew up a HUGE Cincinnati Reds fan. I was in high school when the Big Red Machine won back-to-back World Series titles in 1975 and 1976. The 1975 Series versus the Boston Red Sox was for me the greatest World Series ever played.
While I admired Davey a lot, my brother Sherman probably admired him even more. He played shortstop all but 2 seasons from 2nd grade through high school. Sherman's first year on the high school varsity team, he chose number 13 because of Concepcion.
Immediately after Sherman's first game, Dad made him choose another number because like many people, Dad thought the number "13" would bring bad luck.
Like the Giants' Omar Vizquel, Dave played baseball with joyous enthusiasm. I can't recall a game where I didn't see a smile on his face. Both men hail from Venezuela and chose number 13 in honor of their homeland idol, Luis Aparicio, who played for the Chicago White Sox, Baltimore Orioles and Boston Red Sox.
Davey's number will be officially retired on July 28, when the Chicago Cubs will be in town to play Cincinnati. Thanks for the memories, Dave.