breaking news

Police: Mother facing charges after Urbana elementary student comes to school with cocaine in system

Legendary Reds scout Gene Bennett dead at 89


Gene Bennett, the legendary scout who urged the Cincinnati Reds to draft Derek Jeter only to have his pleas fall on deaf ears, died Wednesday in Portsmouth, Ohio at 89.

“Gene was one of the game’s great scouts,” Reds owner Bob Castellini said. “He loved baseball, loved his team and forever changed the way we looked for talented players.”

Bennett was a senior special assistant to Reds general managers from 1992 until he retired in 2011. He began scouting in 1958 and was promoted to supervisor in 1975. His notable signings included Don Gullett, Barry Larkin, Chris Sabo, Jeff Russell, Charlie Leibrandt and Paul O’Neill.

In 1992, the Reds had the fifth pick in the amateur draft and chose outfielder Chad Mottola over Jeter, who went next to the Yankees and began his Hall of Fame career.

“They said, ‘The Cincinnati Reds take Chad Mottola,’ and I said, ‘Yeah, the Cincinnati Reds just took Babe Ruth, too,’ ” Bennett once said. “Then real quick I heard them say, ‘New York Yankees take Derek Jeter,’ and I said ‘Holy cow!’ ”

Mottola played 35 games for the Reds.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Sports

WATCH: Former Baylor baseball player Max Muncy homers in first start with Los Angeles Dodgers
WATCH: Former Baylor baseball player Max Muncy homers in first start with Los Angeles Dodgers

Former Baylor baseball player Max Muncy played in his first MLB game since 2016 this week, and it was nothing short of impressive. Muncy, now with the Los Angeles Dodgers organization, was called up from the team’s Triple-A affiliate in Oklahoma City, Okla., and made his first start with the team on Wednesday during the finale of...
WATCH: Tennessee AD Phillip Fulmer resumes rebuild of Vols athletics with 4-year deal
WATCH: Tennessee AD Phillip Fulmer resumes rebuild of Vols athletics with 4-year deal

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Philip Fulmer always will be a football legend in Knoxville, but he has a unique opportunity to leave another lasting mark on Tennessee athletics. The Hall of Fame coach-turned-athletic director has been awarded a four-year contract by the university. Fulmer will try to bring the athletic department...
Lincoln Riley’s marketing acumen brings Oklahoma recruiting to new heights
Lincoln Riley’s marketing acumen brings Oklahoma recruiting to new heights

The first eye emoji dropped from Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley’s Twitter account at 1:09 p.m. CT on Friday. Two hours later there was a second. And then a third. No. 4 came later that night. Oklahoma Twitter could barely handle it. When the dust settled, the Sooners reeled in five commitments from high school players over...
Jalen Hurts? These could be SEC’s biggest, best ‘free agents’
Jalen Hurts? These could be SEC’s biggest, best ‘free agents’

Jalen Hurts’ father, Averion, made the some very controversial comments on Thursday, when he alluded to the possibility his son could transfer from Alabama. Jalen is 26-2 as a starter, and while he has struggled in the four College Football Playoff games he has played in, those games have come against the best teams...
Oklahoma football: Love of the game helped Caleb Kelly embrace position move
Oklahoma football: Love of the game helped Caleb Kelly embrace position move

NORMAN, Okla. — The spring is the time to make a position switch. A dozen practices and three scrimmages are sufficient time to see if an experiment can turn into a positive finding. However, Oklahoma linebacker Caleb Kelly’s spring was different. He’s making the move to inside linebacker in 2018. That much ...
More Stories