JOE NUXHALL PHOTO GALLERY
In the summer of 1943, Reds scouts Pat Patterson, Bill McCorry and Eddie Reid were in need of pitching for the team's roster, which was depleted because of wartime service. They set out to meet Orville Nuxhall, Joe's dad. Although big and strong, and a legend in the Hamilton Sunday League, Orville turned down an offer to play for Ogden, Utah, in the Pioneer League. The scouts, however, quickly took notice of another Nuxhall - a tall 14-year-old Joe, who folks called "Sonny." After working out at Crosley Field for Reds Manager Bill McKechnie, he was offered a Reds contract.
On June 10, 1944, Reds Manager Bill McKechnie (left) watched as his Reds were losing miserably to the Cardinals, 13-0. He turned to his bullpen in what would become a truly historic event. He called upon 15-year-old left-hander Joe Nuxhall, who became the youngest player in modern history to appear in a Major League game. He pitched two thirds of an inning and wouldn't appear in the majors for another eight years.
By 1953, Joe was a fixture in the Reds corps of pitchers. He started 17 games, won nine and threw five complete games. Here, he enjoys spring training with his wife, Donzetta, and sons, Phil (left) and Kim.
By 1956, Joe had emerged as one of Cincinnati's most reliable starters. He won a career-high 17 games in 1955 and led the league with five shutouts. He made the All-Star team that year and again in 1956. He won at least 10 games every year from 1954-'58 for the Reds.
"Hamilton" Joe Nuxhall had a loyal following with Reds rooters. He was showered with gifts and presented with a key to the city during Joe Nuxhall Hamilton Night on June 21, 1955.
Joe spent all or parts of 15 seasons with the Cincinnati Reds during his 16-year pitching career. Only in 1961, a year in which he spent with the Kansas City Athletics, did he not play for the Reds. Unfortunately, it was the only year during his entire playing career that the Reds won the pennant. Joe is seen here in 1965, a year in which he went 11-4. It would be the second-to-last season of his career.
Joe moved into the broadcast booth immediately following his playing career. He teamed with Jim McIntyre from 1967-'70 and with Al Michaels (left) from 1971-'73.
For nearly 20 years after his retirement, Joe continued to serve as one of the team's batting-practice pitchers.
In 1974, Marty Brennaman, a broadcaster for the Triple-A Tidewater Mets, beat out 200 other applicants to replace Al Michaels in the Reds radio booth. It was the beginning of what would eventually become a 31-year partnership with Joe. The pair would become the longest running radio duo in club history.
Reds broadcasts soon had a folksy and inviting feel. In addition to the action on the field, Marty and Joe spent plenty of time talking about their other interests, including their families, basketball, gardening and even Elvis, who became a popular fixture in the Reds radio booth.
Marty and Joe broadcast a game during the final game at Cinergy Field. Joe broadcast every season the Reds played in the stadium.
Joe addresses the crowd during closing ceremonies at Cinergy Field. During the weekend festivities, Joe was honored as one of just six Reds employees with 30 or more years of service in the front office.
Joe checks out his plaque during the Reds Hall of Fame and Museum's Opening Night Gala on Sept. 20, 2004. Joe was inducted into the Hall in 1968, just one year after his retirement.
Joe embraces his longtime partner and friend Marty during Joe Nuxhall Tribute Night on Sept. 18, 2004 at Great American Ball Park. The pregame ceremony featured more than 20 Reds greats, including Johnny Bench, Mario Soto and Sparky Anderson.