We’re 2 for 2 today with 2 birthdays to report on January 2nd…
Merlin Henry Kopp B Jan. 2, 1892 D May 6, 1960
Merlin Kopp would join the Senators in late July of 1915, being purchased from St. Thomas of the Canadian League. An outfielder, Kopp would only make it into 16 major league games as a Senator going 8 for 32 at bat with no extra base hits.
Kopp would return to the majors in 1918 with the Philadelphia Athletics. Playing in 96 games in 1918, he’d hit .234. Kopp would also play for the A’s in 1919, making it into 75 games, hitting .226.
Ralph (Red) Kress B Jan. 2, 1907 D Nov. 29, 1962
Here we go again, Red Kress, primarily a shortstop during his career, would play in 1391 games over 14 seasons with 6 different major league teams. Only 249 of those games would come in the uniform of the Washington Senators.
Debuting in late September of 1927 with the St. Louis Browns, Red Kress would make it into 7 games during his first trip to the majors, hitting .304 in 23 at bats.
Kress would play his first full mahor league season in 1928, appearing in 150 games, hitting .273. Kress would hit over .300 the next 3 seasons (1929-1931).
Starting the 1932 season in a slump in St. Louis, Kress was hitting just .173 in 14 games when he was traded to the Chicago White Sox in late April. Kress would finish the year with the White Sox, hitting .285 and would stay in Chicago for the 1933 campaign.
After 8 games with Chicago in 1934, Kress would be traded to the Washington Senators for Bob Boken.
Kress would hit .228 in 56 games for the Senators the rest of the year but would rebound in 1935, hitting .298 in 84 games. Kress would spend 1936 with the Senators as well, hitting .284 in 109 games.
He’d return to his old stomping grounds with the St. Louis Browns in 1938 and respond by hitting .302 in 150 games.
After 13 games with the Browns in 1939, Kress would be on the move again, traded this time to the Detroit Tigers in mid-May. Kress would play in 51 games for Detroit the remainder of the season. After 33 games in 1940, Kress would be released in early August.
Out of the majors, Kress would add a footnote to his career by appearing in 1 game with the New York Giants in mid-July of 1946.