Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Trade Deadline Notebook


by: Jack Ward
Staff Writer

Well, the Reds have done it. They traded Johnny Cueto to the Kansas City Royals for three left handed pitchers. They are pretty solid major league prospects so I am pleased with what the Reds got in this deal. I hate to see Cueto leave. The Reds had a legitimate ace with Cueto. Someone they could depend upon to keep them in every game and give them plenty of innings. He will be missed.

Lots of trades have happened so far and more to come. Troy Tulowitzki was traded to the Blue Jays for Jose Reyes, Tyler Clippard was traded to the Mets, Shane Victorino was traded to the Angels and Cole Hamels is still in Philadelphia as of Tuesday.

The question for the Reds is will they do more? I saw where ownership has given the okay for the Reds to begin to rebuild. That means that you can look for Aroldis Chapman and Jay Bruce to probably be traded. The non-waiver trade deadline is July 31st. After that players can be picked up on waivers and dealt that way. So just because the Reds don’t do anymore before July 31st they still have the waiver period that runs until the end of August.

Monday, July 27, 2015

MLB WEEK 16 – THE TRUTH HURTS


by: Dan Howard
Staff Writer

It’s hard to focus on Reds baseball when they’re closer to last place than first. The defending National Champions Ohio State Buckeye begin their title defense in six weeks, so I apologize if my mind wanders a wee bit.

Speaking of football, final score Sunday, Broncos 17 Bengals 7. I thought the NFL Preseason started in two weeks.

It is with great sadness to see Johnny Cueto leave for Kansas City. I wish him all the best as a member of the Royals. Thank you for eight great seasons as a Cincinnati Red.

How huge is that Homer Bailey 106 million dollar contract is now?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Trade Deadline Thoughts and Observations


by: Jack Ward
Staff Writer

I attended the Reds game on Monday night against the Chicago Cubs. It was a great night. Saw Jay Bruce hit one a mile. Todd Frazier and Marlon Byrd each hit home runs. Brandon Phillips made another dazzling play and Aroldis Chapman blew them away in the ninth.

I toured the Reds Hall of Fame before the game. I was very impressed. If you are a Reds fan you have to take this in, and come early so you can take your time. I spent about an hour and a half there and I actually needed about twice that see every display, but I hope to return in September and do just that.

This is an outstanding effort by the Reds Hall of Fame staff. I was very impressed and even moved by the things I saw. The most amazing was the 4,256 baseballs on the Pete Rose “hit wall.” I loved the artifacts and stories. Again if you go, and for every die hard Reds fan this is a must, plan to spend at least 2-3 hours there to do it right. The Tony Perez display was great. Of course Pete Rose and Johnny Bench displays are everywhere. But just about every Reds player seems to be represented there somewhere. There are interactive games where you can throw a ball, hit a ball, and see displays of old ballparks and even see the actual seats. Actual baseball gloves worn by players, old uniforms, old baseballs and bats are everywhere.

Monday, July 20, 2015

MLB Week 15 - Now Get Back to Work

Photo Credit: CBS Sports

by: Dan Howard
Staff Writer

Breaking News (7:34pm Sunday) ESPN’s Buster Olney is reporting that Reds owner Bob Castellini is authorizing General Manager Walt Jocketty to sell off the team. Rumor has it that at least seven Reds are on the trading block; Johnny Cueto, Aroldis Chapman, Jay Bruce, Marlon Byrd, Brayan Pena, Manny Parra, and Mike Leake.

(Personally, I think it would be a huge mistake to trade Johnny Cueto and Brayan Pena.)

Although I cannot prove it scientifically, I believe that a 24 hour day off goes by faster than an 8 hour work day.

Who knew a countdown timer at a baseball event would generate such excitement.

Yeah, I really believe this year’s Home Run Derby was the best ever. And not because our own Todd Frazier won it.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Thoughts on the All-Star Festivities


by: Jack Ward
Staff Writer

What an exciting Home Run Derby. Of course we Reds fans are excited because our guy Todd Frazier won it in dramatic fashion. Each round was a come from behind last second or extra period homer to win it. The crowd was really into it. Congrats to Todd for a job well done and he has made us all proud.

The new format made for a much better flow for the home run derby. They cut the time from five minutes per competitor down to four minutes due to the threat of inclement weather. But I think they should keep it at four minutes next year. These guys were getting gassed at four minutes, you could imagine if they had to go five. Every competitor called his one allotted time out. My vote is to keep it at four minutes next year. And you said baseball would never have a time clock. Well, it worked pretty well in this case.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Reflections from the First Half


by: Jack Ward
Staff Writer

As we are at the All-Star break, what is our assessment of the Reds so far? Two words, no surprise. The Reds at the break are 39-47 and that’s about where I expected them. As you well know pitching is the name of the game. The Reds are woefully short in experienced starting pitching and their bullpen is not performing very well. Losing Mat Latos and Alfredo Simon in the off season meant the Reds would have to rely on Johnny Cueto, Homer Bailey, Tony Cingrani and Mike Leake for 2015. On paper that seemed to be a pretty good starting core. But let’s face it, most of us had very little confidence in the consistency of Homer Baily, and Mike Leake. Then Bryan Price decided to put Tony Cingrani in the bullpen and then not knowing what you would get with everyday players Billy Hamilton, Devin Mesoroco, Joey Votto and Jay Bruce, I think we all knew it could be a tough year. And then Bailey and Mesoroco going down with injuries threw a wrench in everything.

The Reds most glaring problem is hitting with runners in scoring position. They are hitting just .210 which is last in the National league. The Reds are 14th in strikeouts which is terrible. The Reds are 11th in batting average at a paltry .247. 12th in runs scored and 10th in on base percentage. Not very good for a lineup that includes seasoned veterans.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

MLB WEEK 14 – BREAK TIME!!!

by: Dan Howard
Staff Writer

Some notes from the Rain Forest region of the Southern Appalachians.

A couple of days ago I drove by Noah Dillon’s house near my home and I couldn’t help but notice that he and some of his sons were building a huge boat in their yard. Do you think they know something we don’t?

In 2015 Cincinnati is 12 – 2 versus the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Washington Nationals.

Facing the rest of the scum sucking bottom feeders of baseball not named the Kansas City Royals, our Reds sport a record of 27 – 45. For what it’s worth the Reds are 0 – 2 against the Royals.

Speaking of Pittsburgh, Saturday night’s P.N.C. 14 inning clash with St. Louis may have been the best game of the 2015 season. Three times the Bucs rallied from deficits, twice in extra innings, only to see Andrew McCutchen win the game in the home 14th with a dramatic two run walk off homer. I case you’re wondering, that’s what swag does for you.

Monday, July 6, 2015

MLB Week 13 - Firecrackers and Duds


by: Dan Howard
Staff Writer

Who knew the Milwaukee Brewers were that good?

It’s hard to believe that the 2015 baseball season, along with the year, is officially half over.

In honor of the Independence Day weekend, I thought I’d list the Reds “Firecrackers and Duds” through the first half of 2015.

Firecracker – Todd Frazier, who is now on pace to hit 51 home runs, 49 doubles, 102 extra base hits and drive in 111 runs. Frazier is the first Cincinnati Reds player to produce 24 doubles and 25 homers by the All Star break. Can you say Most Valuable Player?

Dud – Joey Votto, who is a scant one for fourteen during the month of July. That’s a scintillating .071 batting average.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

MLB WEEK 12 – ERRORS, MUFFS, AND BLUNDERS


by: Dan Howard
Staff Writer

Last week I made a reference to me slowly becoming a Eugenio Suarez fan. Since that time Suarez has forgotten what side of a glove you catch a ball with, leading to three Reds losses, so I officially rescind my fan hood of Eugenio Suarez.

If the Mets Matt Harvey is the “Dark Knight” then Steven Matz is “Superman”.

Matz line for Sunday’s game – 7.2 innings pitched, 2 runs (earned), 5 hits, 3 walks, 6 strikeouts, along with 3 for 3 at the plate and 4 RBI, not a bad big league debut.

Rumor has it the New York Mets are petitioning Major League Baseball to play their remaining 2015 games at Citi Field. After Sunday’s win versus Cincinnati, the Mets are 29 – 11 at home this year. If you’re scoring at home, that’s a .725 win percentage.

Monday, June 22, 2015

MLB Week 11 - Open Forum

Todd Frazier 20130625.jpg

by: Dan Howard
Staff Writer

Pretty catchy title for this week, isn’t it?

Were you like me coming into work Monday morning all bleary eyed and tired from watching the conclusion of the U.S. Open? It was great theater.

Jason Day played two rounds of golf with vertigo, what’s your excuse?

Was it me or did the Chambers Bay course make the world’s best golfers look like mere mortals?

And now for something completely different…..

In his last fifteen games Todd Frazier is hitting .375 (24 – 64) with eight doubles, seven homers and 16 RBI. Frazier has hit four of the Reds last five dingers and five of their last seven. Yeah, he’s got my All Star vote.