Johnny Lee Bench (born December 7, 1947 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma) is a former professional baseball catcher who played in the Major Leagues for the Cincinnati Reds from 1967 to 1983 and is a member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Bench, a 14-time All-Star selection and a two-time National League Most Valuable Player, was a key member of The Big Red Machine, which won six division titles, four National League pennants, and two World Series championships. ESPN has called him the greatest catcher in baseball history. Bench played baseball and basketball and was class valedictorian at Binger High School in Binger, Oklahoma. He is one-eighth Native American (Choctaw). His father told him that the fastest route to becoming a major leaguer was as a catcher.
Contributions by Orsoni, RobotG, and Yankees10.