Lee May, the “Engineer” behind the Big Red Machine

Lee Mays is a Hall of Famer and has played for multiple baseball teams including; The Cincinnati Reds, the Baltimore Orioles, Houston Astros and Kansas City Royals. However, he isn’t regarded as one of the great baseball players. Nevertheless, concerning Cincinnati Red history, he unquestionably was an engineer behind the creation of what Cincinnati fans remember as the “Big Red Machine.” So does Lee Mays get enough credit? You see Lee Mays was a 6 ft 3 205 pounds first baseman who could hit and run with the best of them. He was an outstanding individual baseball player and helped lead the Red’s to the Playoffs in 1970 before falling to the Orioles. But during 1971 the Cincinnati Reds struggled as a team and finished 79-83. Because of this, the team decided to go a different route, and Lee Mays was a part of it. He was pivotal in a trade that brought Joe Morgan along with other players to the team. You see the very definition of an engineer is a person who designs, built or maintains machines. Lee Mays was that. Upon learning of his induction into the Reds Hall of Fame, Mays was elated and relieved. He stated that he’ll “always be a Red at heart because that’s where I got my beginning.” Mays first major league ball game was as a Cincinnati Red. His first World Series was also as a Cincinnati Red. He continued stating, “I’ve got a lot of good memories, and I have a lot of good friends that I met when I played in Cincinnati. It’s a fun town to play in.” So while the era of the Big Red Machine will forever go down in Red’s history; It’s important that baseball enthusiast never forget the man who spearheaded the movement, Lee Mays.

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