Wednesday, September 20, 2006


Since I have failed to report on anything in a while, let it be known that the days that I did not write contained mostly humiliating losses to the lowly last place Cubs and the not-so-lowly Wild Card leading Padres, along with a loss to the Astros. The one win over the Cubs in the duration was once again behind Bronson Arroyo's recently fantastic pitching.

Now onto something I actually saw (on TV) and can actually write about.

Holy crap! They won! Harang has 14 W's! The bullpen tried to keep it familiar, though. They certainly tried their darn'dest to blow the lead. Stormy came through to preserve the win, though, a 5-4 win. After Sunday's debacle it seemed impossible that the Reds would ever win again, but they did. Barely.

Houston scored first, when Luke Scott's RBI triple tried to kill Brandon Phillips (sure, it might actually have been Freel's throw that hit him in the eye, but I'm blaming Scott). Denorfia would have none of it, though, and quickly responded with his first Major League homer, a 2-run affair that put the Reds up by 1. They continued the scoring in the 5th, and by the middle of the inning Cincinnati was up 5-1. The Reds, however, failed to score again, and Cincinnati fans spent the rest of the game holding their breath.

Harang gave up a run in each of the 5th and 6th innings, bringing the score to 5-3. He ran into heaps of trouble in the 8th and handed the ball over to Schoeneweis, who allowed 1 run (credited to Harang) and didn't get anyone out. Weathers stepped in to finish the 8th and 9th rather uneventfully. The Reds scraped out a win and their fans finally breathed again. Is "breathed" a word? It sounds very wrong, but says it is right. Of course, some things that are right sound wrong anyway. Like "dived." Apparently "dove" is no longer a word, so instead of saying, "I dove into the water," you must now say, "I dived into the water." Who decides these things? I want to be on that committee. "Oscillate" must go.

Right, back to baseball. Bronson Arroyo takes the mound in Houston today at 2:05. It's on ESPN! Go Reds!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Tales of Interest

First off, apologies to Matt Groening for stealing the title from an episode of Futurama (which, by the way, was a fantastic show).

I wanted to point out a few things I've come across/had pointed out to me lately.

  • Daedalus has introduced the world to a new voodoo doll. Here's hoping this one works as well as Voodoo Albert.
  • RHM finally got her latest podcast up and running. I can't listen to it because DIAL-UP SUCKS. Call her hotline!
  • Write On Sports is a new site dedicated to blogs of all kinds of sportiness. Some of the members of the Reds blogosphere are listed there and I'm sure more are on their way. I haven't really had a chance to check it out much, but since they were kind enough to link to us, we'll return the favor.
  • Eddie Guardado seems to be in pretty good spirits after having his arm cut open. His only complaint was that the scar "messed [his] pretty arm up." The part about Eddie is underneath the main story about Ross's foot pain, also a tale of interest.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

One Game Closer

That was a close one. For some reason, though, I never felt like the Reds were going to lose. That could be because I didn't get to actually see Franklin blow yet another lead. Brandon Phillips and Jason LaRue get big kudos for their efforts. LaRue did not look very excited about winning the game, though. In fact, he looked a little po-ed. But maybe he's just like that; all business and no fun.

The Reds chipped away at the Padres hold on the Wild Card in what I'm sure was heartbreaking fashion for San Diego. After jumping all the way out to a 1 run lead in the 2nd, the Padres hopes were dimmed a bit when Rich Aurilia smashed a 3-run homer in the 3rd. Cincinnati retained the lead until the 6th, when Ryan Franklin decided to make things interesting (I suppose I should point out that Eric Milton was the starting pitcher. He went 5 innings and gave up one run before leaving with a sore elbow). After Franklin allowed 3 runs on 3 hits in 2/3 innings, the Padres were back on top, 4-3.

In the 8th, however, Brandon Phillips's grounder got Edwin Encarnacion home from 3rd and tied the game at 4's. Neither team scored again until the 11th. Jason LaRue came up to bat with nobody on and 1 out in the 11th for the Reds. He swung at and missed the first pitch, but the second was sent sailing into the stands in left field, fair by mere feet. LaRue came home to the traditional beating and marched his way straight to the dugout, no smiles, though he did take the time to hit a few rocks on his way. When all was said and done, the Reds had won 5-4 and taken a small step closer to making it to October.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Bronson Wins 3 in a Row

It's amazing! Bronson Arroyo is determined to own the world for the rest of September. He's had 3 great games in a row, all of which led to W's. We like W's! That's why the blog starts with one. Okay, not really. Arroyo pitched 8 innings and allowed only 2 runs. Scott Schoeneweis pitched the 9th, giving up a hit and no runs.

During the 2nd inning, Gameday says Juan Castillo grounded out, and was also out on batter interference. I have no idea what that means. He was batting, he grounded out, he was the 3rd out, and then he was out again? Obviously, this is a baseball concept I do not understand. It'd probably make more sense if I knew what actually happened. Other than that, there wasn't much action until the 6th inning.

In the top of the 6th, Chris Duffy and Jack Wilson singled for the Pirates, and later scored on Freddy Sanchez's single. The Reds responded with 3 runs in the bottom of the 6th. Aurilia, Encarnacion and Dunn all scored a run to put the Reds up 3-2. Royce Clayton doubled in the 7th and Aurilia brought him home with a single to bring the score to its final 4-2.

The Reds now sit just below .500 with a record of 71-72. They are 4 1/2 games behind the Cardinals in the NL Central (just barely holding onto 2nd place), and 3 1/2 games behind the Padres in the Wild Card (just barely holding onto 5th place). That's still better than a lot of the early predictions.


Apparently I was wrong. We did go to the game Saturday after all, but I went with Christina instead of my mom. And we got tickets for free, rather than half-price. Christina's parents' neighbors, whoever they are, are awesome people. They were the best seats we've ever had at Great American, and even more best because they cost 0 dollars.

Our fabulous seats

Unlike the last three games I've been to, it was warm and sunny. A great day for a game. We got there a little late, and instead of sitting down to watch the rest of the 2nd inning, we went hunting for food. We discovered that one hot dog vendor will sell hot dogs for $3.75, while the one right next to it sells them for $8.75. I hadn't noticed that ever before. Apparently people will buy 9 dollar hot dogs, though.

At some point we missed Jason Bay's home run and we came back to a 2-1 game. Jackass and Loudmouth, the two old men sitting in front of us, ruined any chance we had of enjoying a game that had so little to enjoy. The Reds kept it close for a while, but all the while Loudmouth kept yelling about how much he hated the guys. I was moments from smacking him when he started laying into Coffey. Jackass kept moving his head so that I couldn't see a damn thing that was going on. I'm not tall, so that's a problem to begin with anyway.

Memorable moments:
  • Free team photos to every fan but me
  • Brandon Phillips's two-run homer right after we were noting the game's level on the Meter of Suckitude
  • Helmet Sundaes (now with M&M upgrade)
  • Mr. Red stealing a Pirates fan's hat (returning it after rubbing it under his arm)
  • I couldn't see the corner in right field and thought Dewayne Wise's double in the 7th was a home run
  • Seeing more of Great American than I have ever seen before
  • Finding Adam Dunn's apartment (we really just saw a Texas flag hanging off the balcony of an apartment near the ballpark, but it could have been Adam's)
  • I made Buckeyes and am very proud of myself for not screwing them up

Unfortunately, the Reds lost this game 7-4. I blame Ryan Franklin. Or, more appropriately, Narron for using him again and again, knowing that he blows close games again and again. I also blame the cat for waking me up this morning by sticking his claws in my foot. At least the dog just lays on me.

Evil Kitten

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Reds Beat Stuffing out of Pirates

Take your best record in the NL Central since the All-Star break and shove it, Pirates! Your bad assness was not strong enough to overcome the power of Kyle Lohse's unusually pronounced name, or Freel's lead off home run, or Javy's multiple home runs, or Dunn's 40th home run (for the 3rd straight year). Winning 9-1 last night makes me kind of sad that we decided against the game tonight. But, if we did go, I'd just have to listen to my mother complaining that she's missing the Ohio State/Texas game.

Lohse looked grand once again, with 7 innings pitched and 1 run earned (on 7 hits). Todd Coffey and Gary Majewski (who has been out so long I couldn't remember his first name) finished out the 8th and 9th innings respectively without allowing any more runs.

As previously mentioned, it was all about home runs for the Reds last night. It was all about home runs for the Pirates, too. Their one run was scored on a homer from Ryan Doumit. If the Reds can just do that every night for the rest of the month, maybe there's still hope. The Cardinals were soundly thrashed by the Diamondbacks last night. That helps.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Tea for Two

Two more series, two more wins. And two wins in a row for Bronson. There's a refreshing change of pace. Unfortunately, post-season hopes are dwindling, and fast. The Reds are now 6 games (I think) behind St. Louis and have several teams ahead of them in the Wild Card. And, with their win last night, Houston is now creeping up and threatening to move between the Reds and Cardinals in the division. Alas! But all hope is not lost. Though there are several teams to overtake in the Wild Card, there are only 4 1/2 games between Cincinnati and San Diego (and only a game and a half between Cincinnati and everybody up to San Diego). The Marlins are making the last bit of the season interesting.

On the bright side, Arroyo pitched a pretty nifty 3-hit shutout against the Giants on Tuesday. I missed the last inning because somebody had to watch the end of Big Brother. Or perhaps it was the beginning of Rockstar Supernova. Either way, reality television ruined my evening. The offense garnered only 3 runs, but they were more than enough, thanks to Arroyo's shutout. Arroyo's other win was against the Padres this past Friday (reverse chronological order! AHHHHHHHH!). It was another lopsided game, with the Reds winning 6-2. Is it an indicator that Arroyo is ready to blast us through September like he did at the beginning of the season? I hope so. I also hope that a few more people jump on board and follow suit. Like, the whole team.

Aurilia has been tearing the place up lately. He's had several multiple hit games and has been making some very nice plays on the defensive side. He's jumping on board. Freel's always on board. Griffey can't be on board right now, as he dislocated his toe trying to emulate Freel. No word yet on when he'll be back.

Eddie Guardado will not be back at all this season. Turns out he has a torn ligament in his arm. That's quite a bit worse than tendinitis. Guardado was placed on the 60-day DL to make room for Jason Johnson, whom the Reds acquired last week and I think I didn't mention. He's a pitcher of the long-relief variety. Long-relief for now, anyway.

Cincinnati also picked up Sun-Woo Kim from the Rockies. His 19.26 ERA was scary as can be, but he allowed just 2 runs in his start yesterday. He's going to need a few more of those before I stop being scared for him, but that was a good way to start (Edit: I had no idea the game was on ESPN yesterday, and now that I've read what other people have to say about it, maybe Kim's start wasn't as good as it sounds).

Cincinnati is finally done with California for a bit, as they take on Pittsburgh this weekend. I might be at the game Saturday. I don't know yet. Half-price tickets are awfully tempting.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Happy September!

Let's make it 6 in a row. I expected the Dodgers to be tough, but I was holding out hope for at least one win. I'm not going to be depressed about it, though. Last year the Reds tore through the West Coast and it did very little for them. Considering that, perhaps they can be torn up by the West Coast this year and have very little done to them. Last year they weren't on the brink of making the playoffs, true, but there are only 1 1/2 games between Cincinnati and San Diego and 3 games with San Diego coming up. Plus 3 more later this month. That's plenty of opportunity to stay in the Wild Card race. We'll just have to do something about the Phillies. Kidnap Howard? Don't.

In light of the off day (even though every day feels like an off day when the Reds are in California) Edit: It is not an off day. That was yesterday. I guess that proves my point. I was going to give you a whole bunch of links. However, graduating from college has left me reliable-internet-less. Cursed dial-up is all I have, and right now it refuses to cooperate in any manner, save at least allowing me access to my own blog. I really hate dial-up.

In general, those links were going to consist of:

  • Daedalus has lots of stuff to link to. Chelipe was particularly entertaining
  • RHM says her blog is worth a bit more than $23,000 in internet money or something. We are worth a measely $8,000 and change
  • JD's peeps took over a Dodgers blog
  • Rumblings about David Wells (all for naught, as the Padres apparently got him)
  • And others