Kent Franklin Mercker was born in Indianapolis, Indiana on February 1, 1968. He graduated from Dublin High School in Dublin Ohio, where he still lives today. I saw a quote from him where he mentioned children, though I don’t know how old or how many. And I presume that children would involve a wife as well, but that’s just conjecture on my part.
People in-the-know say he is the wittiest guy in the Reds’ clubhouse, though we don’t see much of that as fans. Oddly, the media don’t focus so much on the late inning relievers. Go figure.
On May 11, 2000, when Mercker was pitching for the Angels against the Rangers, he had to be pulled from the game with shooting pain in his head and dizziness. At the hospital, he discovered he was having a brain hemorrhage. Oddly, he didn’t have an aneurysm and the bleeding stopped by itself, without surgery.
Mercker missed only 80 games before coming back to get the win against the Red Sox, though he sat out the 2001 season to finish his recovery. He apparently hasn’t suffered any long-term effects, except for a deep appreciation for the preciousness of life and an excellent comeback for whenever his (presumed) wife tries to guilt him about the pain of childbirth.
In 2004, Mercker made headlines when he had an apparent feud with the Cubs’ television announcers, Chip Caray and Steve Stone:
I heard Chip Caray [say], ‘Oswalt pitched eight brilliant innings,'” Mercker said. “Six runs in eight innings, and that’s brilliant? It was in the heat of battle and I shouldn’t have done it, but I called our public relations person, Sharon Pannozzo. I asked her to ask Caray how six runs in eight innings can be brilliant. I should have known better.
Confusion and accusations continued, with Stone claiming Mercker screamed at and threatened him. In the end, Caray and Stone were fired, Mercker was traded, and nothing was satisfactorily explained. Furthermore, it must be the worst-documented incident in the history of baseball, because good luck finding anything about it online. If any of you kind readers out there can remember more details than me, please feel free to share.