Red Kress

Red Kress

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Red Kress

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Ralph "Red" Kress (January 2, 1907 – November 29, 1962) was a shortstop and coach in Major League Baseball. From through , he played for the St. Louis Browns (1927–1932, 1938–1939), Chicago White Sox (1932–1934), Washington Senators (1934–1936), Detroit Tigers (1939–1940) and New York Giants (1946). Kress batted and threw right-handed. He was born in Columbia, California.

Playing career

Throughout his major league career, Kress was known for his great disposition and perpetual motion. Although he played mostly at shortstop, he showed his versatility playing every position but catcher and center fielder. Kress broke in the majors with the St. Louis Browns in the 1927 season. In 1929 he led American League shortstops in fielding percentage (.946) and double plays (94), and during three consecutive seasons he batted over .300 with over 100 runs batted in: .305 with 107 in 1929, .313 with 112 in 1930, and .311 with 114 in 1931, including a 22-game hitting-streak in 1930. Despite his efforts, in 1932 he was traded by St. Louis to the Chicago White Sox, who were unveiling Luke Appling at shortstop. Kress therefore adapted to whatever position he had to play, even pitching, in detriment of his offensive production. In the 1934 midseason, he was sent by Chicago to the Washington Senators.

With the Senators, Kress had to compete with Joe Cronin, who was not only the shortstop but the manager. Then Kress became an utility, playing in seven different positions,...
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