Even pretty avid long-time Red Sox fans might have difficulty remembering today’s Beantown Baseball Birthday Celebrant. Mike Brumley was the son of a big league catcher, who followed his Dad into the big leagues and spent parts of eight seasons in the Majors as a pretty obscure utility infielder for six different teams.
One of those teams was the Red Sox. In fact, Boston had originally drafted Brumley in the second round of the 1983 amateur draft only to trade him and pitcher Dennis Eckersley to the Cubs the following May in the deal that brought Bill Buchner to the Red Sox.
Brumley ended up making his big league debut with the Cubs in 1987. He then returned to the minors for a year, spent the 89 season with the Tigers and the following year with Seattle. The Red Sox then signed him as a free agent in January of 1991 and he spent the following season as manager Joe Morgan’s primary utility infielder, appearing in 63 games. A switch-hitter who couldn’t find a good big league stroke from either side of the plate, Brumley averaged just .212 that year and only .206 for his entire career.
His last year in the big leagues was 1994 and then he got into coaching and managing in the minor league systems of both the Diamondbacks and Rangers. He became the Seattle Mariners third base coach in 2010 and in 2014, was named the hitting coach of the Chicago Cubs. It does sort of make you wonder how a guy who had trouble staying above the .200 mark with his own bat can help others better use theirs.