Culture / Sporting Life

Josh Reddick Vows to Sleep With His Astros Championship Ring: The Wild, True Touching Stories of Houston’s Ring Night

BY // 04.04.18
photography F. Carter Smith

Josh Reddick didn’t just get a new ring. He got a potential new bedmate.

“I think I might sleep with mine tonight,” Reddick says. Hey, the lure of a sparkling, 210-diamond authentic, earned-on-the-field-only world championship ring is powerful. There are Major League Baseball players who’ve made much worse choices in sleeping partners over the years.

Reddick leaves Minute Maid Park after a magical April Tuesday — a ring night — certain of one thing. He’s going to put on his new Houston Astros championship ring — the one with the Houston Strong in diamonds on one side, the one that comes with its own special carrying case, the one that costs more than many Houstonians’ cars — and wear it on the drive home. At least.

After that… well, what happens in the bedroom should stay in the bedroom.

“It’s a gorgeous ring,” Reddick says. “I think it’s magnificent.”

After the night Josh Reddick had, you could forgive a man for falling in love. Reddick howls. He breaks into wrestling poses. And that’s just on the way to getting his world championship ring from Astros owner Jim Crane on the big stage set up in front of the pitcher’s mound. Then, Reddick really goes crazy.

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Enter Josh Reddick, the human personification of a can of Red Bull.

Ring night turns into another party night at Minute Maid Park — and Reddick is the long-haired, tattooed wild man ringmaster at the center of it all. He hits two home runs, including a grand slam that sends another large, loud, late-staying Astros crowd (37,106 after more than 45,000 on opening night) into giddy delirium. He knocks in six runs in all, in a 10-6 Houston win over the Baltimore Orioles that shows this Astros team won’t just stop rolling.

Heck, Reddick even pulls off a home-run robbing catch over the right-field wall that’s near George Springer Spiderman worthy.

If Josh Reddick is a maniac, he’s a maniac in full on this night.

That’s the thing about the Astros’ wild man, the guy who struts around winning postseason clubhouses in nothing but an American flag speedo. Reddick is so off the wall — especially by the button down, corporate standards of many of today’s professional athletes — that it’s sometimes easy to forget what a deadly hitter he can be too.

“Redd — what a huge ballgame,” Astros ace Justin Verlander says on a night when he needed a little pick-me-up. Enter Josh Reddick, the human personification of a can of Red Bull.

On a night that was arguably even more emotional than the world championship banner unveiling home opener, a night that even Astros manager A.J. Hinch admits got to him, the wild and crazy guy stabilizes everyone. “It’s incredible,” Hinch says. “As big as the smiles you see on the stage, it kind of hits you.

“…This is what we’re playing for. We want a ring.”

The Astros have theirs. Their first one at least. And Reddick ensures they can completely enjoy it. To the bedroom and beyond!

Leave it to the guy who seems to relish every moment to make the most of this one too. Reddick pleads to the Twitter Gods on Monday after an 0 for 8 stretch, tweeting, “I will get a hit. I will get a hit. I will get a hit,” in a seemingly endless string and then absolutely tears the cover off the ball on Tuesday.

This is the way of Houston’s world champions. Don’t take yourself too overly serious. Just find a way to produce.

Carlos Correa does it by slamming an inside the park home run off the center field wall despite a bum left toe. Reddick does it reminding everyone he is much, much more than comic relief. The Astros bang out another 10 hits, move to 5-1 on a young season that’s already starting to look like a mandate for dominance.

The Astros have their rings. And the rest of the American League may just be realizing that these guys really just aren’t going to let up. These are not the post-title Chicago Cubs on some type of historic party bender.

These just may be the new lord of the rings.

“Awesome,” Astros pitcher Charlie Morton tells PaperCity of his first look ring reaction. “Beautiful. I think there was a lot of anticipation. Wondering what it’s going to look like. It was awesome.”

Morton pauses. The emergency World Series Game 7 savior could not stop thinking of the heart-wrenching sights of flood-torn Houston the Astros saw from the team plane when they first flew back to the city after Hurricane Harvey in the wake of that historic victory. Morton knows these are no ordinary rings. Even by sports world championships standards.

These Astros rings mean more. Because of the city. Because of the fight. Because of Houston.

“There’s nothing like it,” Morton says of the experience of walking across the stage on the field to get his ring. “You never experience anything like it.

Still, Charlie Morton is not going to sleep with his championship ring. Not yet at least. You’ve got to be a special breed for that.

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