It's been said before, you don't make promises that you can't or don't intend to keep. One person who definitely kept their promise on Friday was longtime radio broadcaster Marty Brennaman. This is because the 70-year old wound up on the losing end of a bet and was subsequently forced to shave his trademark hair after last night's 3-0 victory over the visiting Pirates. But there's more to this story than just that. The end result of this pledge went way beyond a buzzcut. Yes, it turns out that Brennaman used the spectacle to help raise awareness and money in support of some great causes.
It all started a few weeks ago when Brennaman jokingly told team bench coach, Chris Speier, that he'd go bald if the Reds ripped off a streak of 10 wins in a row. At the time, the feat seemed near impossible as the club hadn't been unable to win more than six consecutively after three attempts. However, they were able to get over the hump in their most recent streak, obviously, and eventually notched their tenth straight victory in Colorado last Sunday. Thus, prompting the players, coaches, team personnel and fans alike to remind Brennaman of his pledge.
Said the iconic man of the mic after the team's tenth straight win in Denver, "I'm a man of my word...I'll do it".
The original agreement was to have his hair shaved off privately in the friendly confines of the team's clubhouse. However, he offered a stipulation and challenge to the Cincinnati community on Monday when he vowed to have his locks removed to the public after Friday's game if fans could raise $20,000 or more for the Reds Community Fund. The fans overwhelmingly stepped up to the plate and surpassed the threshold ($50,000+) and the rest as they say is history.
“This is one of those occasions where I opened my mouth and inserted my foot,” Brennaman said earlier on Friday. “There was never any question about backing down. The only emotion I have is that I’m inquisitive to see how it looks. If it looks bad, then I’ll be in a fit of depression.”
As you can see, his new look certainly is a drastic change from the signature poofy style he's been sporting for years. However, times such as these call for such odd, rare and exciting spectacles around the Queen City. The town is home to the team with Major League Baseball's best record and current NL Central leaders. The season is shaping up to be a classic; a one with which fans won't soon forget. And the gesture by their legendary broadcaster on Friday adds just one more chapter to an already story-book campaign.
Hats off to Marty for being a man of his word and making this such a great event for all involved.