Scooter Gennett

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Ryan Joseph Gennett

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Biographical Information[edit]

Scooter Gennett made the majors in 2013.

Gennett played in the 2008 Aflac All-American High School Baseball Classic. The Milwaukee Brewers took him in the 16th round of the 2009 amateur draft and he turned down a scholarship to Florida State University to sign. The scout was Tim McIlvaine. He made his pro debut with the 2010 Brevard County Manatees, hitting .309/.354/.463 with 39 doubles and 87 runs, fielding .959 at second base. He was third in the Milwaukee chain in runs (3 behind Brett Lawrie and Erik Komatsu) and first in doubles. He also was tied with Wade Gaynor for 5th in the Midwest League in two-baggers, tied for 6th in runs and 7th in average. He was named the MWL All-Star second baseman.

Scooter hit .300/.334/.406 with 74 runs and 11 steals (caught 10 times) for the 2011 Brevard County Manatees while fielding .967. He led the Florida State League in hits (167), was 5th in total bases (226, between Tony Plagman and Robbie Grossman) and was 10th in average. He set the Brevard County hit record. He also led Milwaukee farmhands in hits (14 ahead of Mat Gamel). He was named the FSL All-Star utility infielder (Tyler Bortnick was picked at 2B). He then hit .411 for the Peoria Javelinas in the Arizona Fall League. Baseball America rated him as the #5 Brewers prospect, after pitchers Wily Peralta, Taylor Jungmann, Jed Bradley and Tyler Thornburg.

Gennett began 2012 with the Huntsville Stars; after 71 games, he was batting .299/.344/.416 with 20 doubles. He was then chosen for the 2012 Futures Game. He replaced Kolten Wong at second for the US team in a 17-5 romp. He lined out against Enny Romero in the 5th, drew a walk from Ariel Pena in the 6th (scoring on a Mike Olt double), led off the 7th with a double against Julio Rodriguez (scoring on a hit by Wil Myers) and grounded out in the 8th versus Bruce Rondon. He finished the year at .293/.330/.385 with 30 doubles. He led Southern League 2B in putouts (239), assists (377), errors (19) and double plays (81). He was 6th in the SL in average (between Alfredo Marte and Marc Krauss) and 4th in doubles. He was named the league's All-Star 2B. Baseball America named him the best defensive second baseman in the SL. He was doing okay early in 2013 with the Nashville Sounds (.297/.342/.376 in 50 G) when he was called to the majors when Milwaukee released Alex Gonzalez.

Gennett made his major league debut with the Brewers on June 3, 2013, pinch-hitting for Aramis Ramirez in the 9th inning of a 10-2 loss to the Oakland Athletics; he grounded out against Jesse Chavez. he stayed with Milwaukee for the remainder of the season, playing 69 games during which he hit .324, with 11 doubles and 6 triples, scoring 29 runs and driving in 21. He became the team's full-time starter at second base in 2014, taking over for Rickie Weeks, as he made 110 starts at the position, out of 137 games played. He continued to hit well, with a .289 average, 31 doubles, 9 homers, 55 runs scored and 54 RBIs. He was off to a cooler start in 2015, hitting .207 after 10 games, when he suffered a freak injury. He cut his left hand and had to have five stitches as he sliced a knuckle on a metal rack while taking a shower in a hotel in Pittsburgh, PA. He had to stay in the minors for three weeks to get comfortable once again with swinging a bat and finally made it back into the Brewers' line-up on June 11th. It was a good return as he drove in the go-ahead run with a single in the 8th inning in a 6-5 win over the Washington Nationals. He played 114 games that season, hitting .264 with 6 homers and 29 RBIs. In 2016, he played another 136 games for Milwaukee as the regular second baseman and hit .263. He showed more power than before, with 30 doubles and 14 homers, scored 58 runs and drove in 56. His OPS+ was only 91, though, due to a lack of walks (his OBP was a middling .317).

Scooter headed to spring training with the Brewers in 2017 but was played on waivers at the end of March. He was picked up by his hometown Cincinnati Reds and made the team as a utility player. On June 6th, he had a night for the ages against the St. Louis Cardinals: he had a four-homer game, as part of a 5-for-5 night, and drove in 10 runs in a 13-1 win. Not known for his power, he entered the game with 3 homers on the year and having just come out of an 0-for-19 slump the day before. He started things off innocently enough with a run-scoring single in the 1st, then hit a grand slam in the 3rd, a two-run shot in the 4th, a solo homer in the 6th and another two-run homer in the 8th. Gennett became the 17th player in major league history to perform the feat, the last having been Josh Hamilton in 2012. He was making a rare start in left field that day, as a late replacement for Scott Schebler who was resting a sore shoulder. His first homer, the grand slam, was hit off Adam Wainwright, the next two off John Gant, and the fourth against John Brebbia. He continued to hit well after that game and on August 14th, he reached the 20-homer mark for the first time with a blast against Mike Montgomery of the Chicago Cubs. That game was a blowout 15-5 loss and he got to make his major league pitching debut in the game, tossing an inning of mop-up relief during which he surrendered a two-run homer to Javier Baez. On September 22nd, he set a new Reds record with his fourth grand slam of the season, although it came in a 5-4 loss to the Boston Red Sox; it came against Rick Porcello in the 1st.

He explains that he got the name Scooter when he was five years old, when his mom took him to the police station so that he could get a lecture about not wearing a seat belt. As he explains: "I thought I was going to be arrested. So, I told the policeman my name was Scooter. After we left there, I didn't answer to Ryan because I thought if I answered to my real name I'd get arrested." The name Scooter stuck ever since. It seems he was destined to grow up to be a middle infielder.

Source: 2012 Brewers Media Guide

Further Reading[edit]

  • Bob Nightengale: "Scooter Gennett's four-home run night: An only-in-baseball 'miracle' for Red", USA Today Sports, June 7, 2017. [1]
  • C. Trent Rosecrans: "Reds outfielder Scooter Gennett makes history with 4-home run game", USA Today Sports, June 6, 2017. [2]
  • Mark Sheldon: "Gennett becomes 17th player with 4-HR game", mlb.com, June 7, 2017. [3]

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