5 former Chicago Cubs you’ve likely forgotten about – #4: Reed Johnson
Reed Johnson played for six teams during his 13-year career, but his four seasons with Chicago were among his best. His tenure with the club included a pair of two-year stints, the first of which came in 2008 after he joined the team in free agency.
That season, Johnson hit .303/.358/.420 for the Cubs – and although he was never a power guy by any means (he hit just 23 home runs in his career) – he quickly endeared himself to the fanbase by playing with a gritty, hard-nosed mentality. Whatever needed done, this was the guy who was always ready to give it all to get the job done.
After leaving for the Dodgers following the 2009 season, the veteran returned to Chicago ahead of the 2011 campaign – and he picked up right where he left off, batting .309/.348/.467 across 111 games in one of his best offensive seasons to-date. The following year, he just kept rolling, hitting .302/.355/.444 before the new Theo Epstein-led regime traded him to Atlanta, along with Paul Maholm, in exchange for Jaye Chapman and Arodys Vizcaino.
Neither of those guys wound up doing a whole lot for Chicago, but it was Vizcaino who went back to the Braves in the deal that brought Tommy La Stella to the Windy City back in 2014 – so that’s something.
To this day, if you skip past the legends and superstars, Johnson is one of my favorite Cubs ever – and he’s definitely one I don’t think about nearly enough these days.