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Rangers History Today: Kevin Reimer's Walk-off

On this day a former Rangers slugger drove in another former Rangers slugger for the team's second walk-off win in three games

On this date in Texas Rangers history, Kevin Reimer drove in Juan Gonzalez in the 11th inning to help the Rangers to their second extra-inning walk-off victory in three games.

Back on May 27, 1990, the Rangers were hosting the Chicago White Sox. Two games earlier, the Rangers defeated Kansas City, 4-3, in 13 innings. Against the White Sox, the Rangers didn’t have to wait quite that long to win the game.

In the bottom of the 11th, Reimer strode to the plate at Arlington Stadium with Juan Gonzalez already on base. Reimer drilled a line drive down the first-base line, one that allowed Gonzalez to score and give the Rangers the victory.

Mar 8, 2020; Surprise, Arizona, USA; A general view of the field prior to the spring training game between the Texas Rangers and the Los Angeles Dodgers at Surprise Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Nolan Ryan
Apr 5, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; A view of the Texas Rangers bullpen during the game between the Texas Rangers and the Toronto Blue Jays at Globe Life Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Reimer started his pro career as an 11th round pick by the Rangers in the MLB Draft, and by 1988 he was named the Rangers Minor League Player of the Year. He was thought of as a player on the level of other young prospects in the Rangers’ organization at the time, including Gonzalez, catcher Ivan ‘Pudge’ Rodriguez, and third baseman Dean Palmer.

He certainly had his moments. He had a couple of cups of coffee with the Rangers at the end of the 1988 and 1989 seasons, but in 1990 he played 64 games, but only hit two home runs. Finally given a chance to play every day in 1991, Reimer’s numbers started to pick up. He hit a career-high 20 home runs in 1991, driving in 69 runs. Then, in 1992, he hit another 16 home runs with 58 RBI.

After the 1992 season, the Rangers had to expose some players to the MLB expansion draft for the league’s two newest teams, the Colorado Rockies and the Florida Marlins. The Rockies selected Reimer with its ninth pick. 

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But it’s what happened next that he’s likely best known for. The Rockies dealt Reimer to Milwaukee for a relatively unknown player named Dante Bichette, who went on to be a four-time All-Star for Colorado.

Reimer played the 1993 season with the Brewers, hitting 13 home runs and driving in 60 runs. During that season he became just the second Brewer all-time to go 6-for-6 in a single game.

Reimer spent two seasons in the Japan League with the Fukuoka Daiei Hawks before his professional career ended.

You can find Matthew Postins on Twitter @PostinsPostcard

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