Tuesday, July 12, 2016

MLB Week 14 – A Break from Losing

by: Dan Howard
Staff Writer

Notes from the lounge chair.

BREAKING NEWS: The Reds have no pitchers in Tuesday’s All Star Game.

At least the All Star break means our beloved Reds can’t lose for the next four days. Can’t win either.

Impressive showing from Adam Duvall in the Home Run Derby, losing in the semi-finals to last year’s champ, and former Red, Todd Frazier.

Frazier fell in the championship round to Giancarlo Stanton 20 – 12. Frazier probably would have had more if it weren’t for some kid in left field robbing him a couple of times.

“Yes, it is more fun to steal a homer than to hit one.” Says the man who has robbed homers but never hit one himself (me).

In case you were wondering Stanton’s performance is generally referred to as “Beast Mode”.

Of the twenty-one longest home runs hit during the Derby, twenty were hit by Stanton. I think one of them landed in my yard earlier this morning.

Did you see San Diego’s Wil Myers get plunked by his brother during Myers opening round battle with Adam Duvall? Nice to know there’s still some old school pitchers around.

My kids understood the hard way that if you go yard on Dad, you’re going down the next time you come to bat. I wonder why none of them played baseball. Maybe it was my philosophy about fielding, “Your life is meaningless, catching the ball is everything.”

Since June 12 the vaunted Chicago Cubs were cruising at 43 – 18, baseball’s best record, and a nine game lead in the National League Central. Twenty-seven games later and the Cubs are 10 – 17, and have been passed by the white hot San Francisco Giants for N.L. home field advantage.

Our Reds are 8 – 18 since June 12.

Speaking of home field, isn’t it about time for baseball to do the right thing and scrap the idiocy of World Series home field being determined by the winner of an exhibition game? Give it to the team with the best record like the other professional sports.

I do see the logic, however, in not awarding home field to the team with the best record since Major League Baseball does not have a balanced scheduled, meaning not all teams play each other during a season.

A balanced schedule can be easily attained with some thought, which is waaaay above my pay grade.

Useless Trivia; for the first time in baseball history, the National League will host four consecutive All Star Games, last year at Great American Ballpark, Petco Park this year, Marlins Park next year, and Nationals Park in 2018. Also, for the first time in history, the host league will not be the home team in the game. That’s going to be very strange.

40 Years Ago; Tuesday July 13, 1976, The Cincinnati Reds were well represented at the All Star Game held in the bicentennial city of Philadelphia. 3B Pete Rose, 2B Joe Morgan, C Johnny Bench, LF George Foster, and SS Dave Concepcion were elected to start, while 1B Tony Perez and RF Ken Griffey Sr. were added as substitutes. Manager Sparky Anderson brought the total to eight Reds participating in the game, won by the National League 7 – 1. With a homer and three RBI, George Foster was named the game’s Most Valuable Player.

Have a blessed week. GO NATIONAL LEAGUE!!!

Dan Howard

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