Former Reds player Tom Browning has died at the age of 62


Tom Browning, the All-Star player who threw the only perfect game in Cincinnati Reds history and helped them win the 1990 World Series, has died.


CINCINNATI — Tom Browning, the All-Star player who threw the only perfect game in Cincinnati Reds history and helped them win a World Series title, died Monday. He was 62 years old.

Boone County Sheriff’s Office Browning’s death was announced on Twitter, Saying he died at his home in Union, Kentucky. No reason is given.

Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to Browning’s home around 1 p.m. after receiving a report of a man found not breathing. They discovered him unresponsive on the couch, and efforts by deputies and EMS staff to resuscitate him were unsuccessful. The Sheriff’s Office announced Browning’s death at 1:13 p.m.

Team spokesman Rob Butcher said the Reds issued a statement after contacting a member of his family.

“The entire Reds family is so amazed and saddened to hear of the passing of Tom Browning. He is affectionately referred to as “Mr. Perfect, “Tom was a true redhead after his playing days who made the Cincinnati area his home and remained deeply involved with the organization,” said the club.

A fan favorite, the Reds Hall of Famer touched fans’ hearts at team events, Reds Hall of Fame ceremonies, and Reds Community Fund activities. We join Reds Country in mourning the loss of one of our all-time greats, who created so many memories and magical moments for all of us. Our deepest condolences to Tom’s family during this difficult time.”

Known for his colorful personality, Browning once walked out of a Wrigley Field game and sat in full Cincinnati uniform with Chicago fans on a rooftop across the street during a game with the Reds-Cubs in July 1993. He was fined $500 for the stunt, according to For The Cincinnati Enquirer.

However, the left fielder’s biggest moment on the mound came when he retired all 27 players he faced in a 1-0 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers at Riverfront Stadium on September 16, 1988.

After a two-hour rain delay, the game started at 10:02 pm and lasted just 1 hour and 51 minutes. It came just over three months after the Brownings lost an unsuccessful pitch in San Diego in the ninth inning on a leadoff single by Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn.

The Browning gem against the Dodgers was one of only 23 perfect games in major league history and the only one for the Reds, professional baseball’s oldest franchise.

Just over a month later, the Dodgers won the World Series – making Browning the only pitcher to throw perfect against a team that won the championship that same year.

“RIP my friend Mr. Perfect Tom Browning,” He tweeted from Hall of Fame and former Reds teammate Barry Larkin. “We shared some great times and also the same birthday 4/28. We will miss you.”

Browning was 18-5 with a 3.41 ERA in 1988 and made the National League All-Star Team in 1991. He went 20-9 with a 3.55 ERA in 1985, finishing second to St. Louis Cardinals Vince Coleman for NL Rookie of the Year of the year and sixth in NL Cy Young Award voting.

Browning has won at least 14 games six times. He led the NL in starts on four occasions, spent six years with more than 225 runs batted in, and gave up the most home runs in the league three times.

Browning went 15-9 with a 3.80 ERA in 1990 to help the Reds win their latest pennant and World Series crown. He was 2-1 with a 3.71 ERA in three starts that postseason, beating the powerhouse Oakland Athletics 8-3 on the road in Game 3 of the World Series to help the Reds achieve an amazing four-game sweep.

“He was just an amazing guy. He was as beloved by the Cincinnati Reds as he was by the city,” said Butcher, longtime vice president of media relations for the Reds. “Everyone who met him just loved the guy. It was fun. I guess that’s the word – it was fun.”

Browning spent 11 seasons with Cincinnati from 1984-94. He broke a bone in his arm during a game in 1994 and ended his career by playing in two games for the Kansas City Royals in 1995.

In 12 major league seasons, he was 123-90 with a 3.94 ERA in 302 games (300 starts).

“I would go on our winter caravan with him and he was just – we were on the bus for hours and the stories he was telling were amazingly funny,” Butcher said. “You can tell his teammates like him. I mean, when it’s around our other Hall of Famers and around his old teammates, you can just tell they like the guy.”

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