Wilson R. Redus
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 5' 5", Weight 160 lb.
- Debut 1924
- Final Game 1940
- Born January 29, 1905 in Tullahassee, OK USA
- Died March 23, 1979 in Fort Worth, TX USA
Oklahoman outfielder Wilson "Frog" Redus played for 17 years in the Negro Leagues. He was often among his league's leaders in key offensive departments.
Redus broke in as a teenager during 1924 with the Indianapolis ABCs (.074) and Cleveland Browns. In 1925, Frog became a starting outfielder for the St. Louis Stars, joining Cool Papa Bell and Branch Russell; the trio would stay together for 7 years. He hit .381, 4th in the Negro National League behind Mule Suttles, Edgar Wesley and Dewey Creacy. He hit only .217 in a postseason series against the Kansas City Monarchs.
Redus batted .323 in 1926; his 8 triples were 4th in the NNL behind Suttles, Turkey Stearnes and Dink Mothell. In 1927, Redus batted .351. He was among the NNL leaders in every extra-base category, with 15 homers (third behind Willie Wells and Stearnes), 18 doubles (tying Bell and Steel Arm Davis for 4th) and 7 triples (tying for third behind Stearnes and Creacy).
Frog hit .345 in 1928. He hit 21 home runs, second to Stearnes. His 6 triples tied outfield mates Bell and Russell for 5th behind Suttles, Red Parnell, Stearnes and George Giles. He hit a measly .154 in a postseason series St. Louis won against the Chicago American Giants. In 1929, the lightweight outfielder hit .318, once again beating out Bell. He hit 24 doubles to tie Newt Allen for third in the league behind Suttles and Bell.
The Muskogee native hit .300 for the Stars in 1930; it was the first time in six years that he had not been among the league leaders in a key category. He went 4 for 12 with a double in a postseason series St. Louis took from the Detroit Stars. In 1931, Redus was no longer a regular as Russell, Bell and Suttles manned the outfield.
In 1932, Redus hit .233 for the Cleveland Stars. He batted .325 in 1933 for the Columbus Blue Birds and Cleveland Giants. His 10 home runs were 5th in the NNL behind Josh Gibson, Oscar Charleston, Jabbo Andrews and Stearnes, 3 of whom would go on to the Hall of Fame.
Redus continued his wanderings in 1934, batting .264 for the Cleveland Red Sox. He joined the Chicago American Giants as a backup late in the campaign. Frog hit only .171 for Chicago in 1935. In 1936, Redus batted .150 in the few games Chicago played against other top black teams (they were no longer in an organized league).
Redus was the starting right fielder for the West in the 1936 East-West Game. Hitting third, he went 0 for 2 before being replaced by Leroy Taylor. He rebounded to bat .252 in the 1937 season, second on Chicago behind Subby Byas on a team hindered by a pitcher-friendly park. Redus did not bat in the 1937 East-West Game, replacing Ducky Davenport in right field late in the game. He continued his playoff woes, going 2 for 23 against the Kansas City Monarchs and making a crucial two-base error in the finale. Redus then was 0 for 9 in a postseason series against the Homestead Grays.
Obviously past his prime as a hitter, Redus retired and later coached and managed in the Negro Leagues. He died in a car crash in 1979 while driving back from a friend's funeral.
- 2-time All-Star (1936 & 1937)
- NNL RBI Leader (1928)
Year-By-Year Managerial Record
|1940||Chicago American Giants||Negro American League||20-31||5th||Chicago American Giants|
- The Biographical Encyclopedia of the Negro Baseball Leagues by James Riley
- The Complete Book of Baseball's Negro Leagues by John Holway
- Black Baseball's National Showcase by Larry Lester