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Did you know Tracy played on 5 major league teams?
MO' Favorite Links
MO' Favorite Links
I will gladly accept bribery to put your site on this list.
My favorite site. Not for those easily offended.
This is a great NBA blog. The NBA (National Basketball Association) is a professional men's basketball league, consisting of 29 American teams, and one Canadian team. It was founded in 1946. Cincinnati used to have a team. I wish it did now.
Better Off Red
Jamie Ramsey is the Assistant Media Relations Director of the Reds. He takes you behind the scenes of a Major League team. And he writes funny captions for his photos.
Plenty of scenery and funny stuff on Big Smudge. I'll be honest, these guys told me they were fans of my show, and even if they didn't mean it, that gets them linked.
Bugs and Cranks
If it's about baseball, these guys usually have something to say about it. And it's usually funny.
Booze, Ladies, and Football.
Calling It Like It Is
A guy from Cincinnati, who uh, well he calls it like it is.
Chris Sabo's Goggles
A Reds fan stuck in Chicago does a blog. He says the purpose of the blog is to inform people of the Reds without the geeky stuff, like facts for example. My kind of guy.
You're probably thinking this website is about me. Actually, it's not.
Local college basketball blog by two guys...one a UC fan, the other an XU fan.
The Godfather of sports blogs.
My favorite baseball blog. I thought I loved the game, then I read these guys.
Stuff guys like. At least stuff normal guys like.
Hugging Harold Reynolds
Very funny sports blog with one of my favorite names.
John Clay's Sidelines
John is an outstanding writer who covers everything and anything UK-related.
Larry Brown Sports
The other Larry Brown, not the guy who's coached half the teams in the NBA.
Look At Me Shirts
Be the guy in the ironic shirt. Take credit for someone else's joke.
Mo Egger's Blog
Did you really think my blog wouldn't be on a list of "favorites?"
Do you like mind-numbing statistical analysis of the Reds? Do you treat every game like the fate of the world rests on it? This site is probably not for you.
Most negative man in America. And I usually agree with him.
Pro Football Talk
Not daily, but almost hourly reading for NFL fans.
Everything and anything Reds...and more, by Reds fans.
Rush The Court
The Ubiquitous college basketblog.
A little UK, a little Louisville. A lot of funny.
Anything and everything hoops.
A Cincinnati guy based in Vegas. What I'd write if I could write.
Because some things can't be taught.
I admit, I'm a geek.
Who Dey Revolution
No site better captures the frustration of being a Bengals fan better than this one. Fan empowerment at its best.
A FEW MO' THINGS, 8/23/12
Can't blame him. I'd like to go ca-noodling with her too.
Let's start with what's most important. These uniforms need to stay....
(Photo courtesy of the AP)
I don't know what MLB's uniform protocol is. I don't care. Last night the Reds and Phillies wore the uniforms from the 1991 season, to commemorate Philly's last season in those threads. Both teams looked splendid, the Reds a little moreso for three reasons...
1) Red is a nicer color than maroon.
2) The Reds had old-school elastic-waist pants. The Phillies wore belts.
3) The Reds won the game.
The current Reds uniforms are not exactly ugly. They're passable and their arrival in 2007 marked a very welcome change from the awful duds the team wore from 1999 through 2006, and they helped us move a little more beyond the forgettable unis they donned from 1993 through 1998, but they don't exactly jump off the TV screen, and they fail the ultimate litmus test for a sports uniform in that you've never seen a rapper wearing a current Reds jersey in one of his videos.
They need to go back.
How slick did the Reds look last night? Not just because Bronson Arroyo was in complete command, or because Cozart and Phillips turned one of the prettiest double plays you'll see, or because Jay Bruce hit a ball that landed in Trenton, but because for the first time in nearly two decades the Reds took the field looking more dapper than a kid who goes overboard on the first day of school.
(Nothing bugged me more as a kid than the classmate who went head-to-toe with all new clothes on day one of a school year. Nothing bugs me more as an adult than people who think I want to see 23928 Facebook pictures of their kid in the new clothes on day one.)
The Reds have had a number of uniform variations throughout their history, but the ones the Reds wore from 1972 - 1992 are the franchise's most identifiable. (The uni, especially the road grays did have slight variations throughout their lifetime. The lettering one the road jersey was altered before the 1990 season. Also, the unis they wore from '68-'71 were similar, but the jersey was a button-down, and given that pullover jerseys are 239234 times cooler than button-downs, they don't count. Yes, I know this stuff by heart and yes, I find it pathetic as well) They just look right in them. They look the part. They look like Reds.
Other teams have changed up their uniforms before going back to the look that fans most associated with them. The San Francisco 49ers and New York Jets come to mind in the NFL. (I can't stand the Jets, but I'm a sucker for their uniforms) So do the Braves. And the best sartorial development in Major League Baseball this season has been the return of the "cartoon bird" to Orioles' hats. (Can't tell me their resurgence is coincidental)
The Reds are most associated with the look they had last night. The look you saw last night was the look the Reds had for their most successful run in history. Wearing those uniforms, or the early-90s variation of it, the Reds appeared in postseason play five times and won three World Series. Since the franchise made a very regrettable change, they'd had just five winning seasons before this year.
The Reds looked like Reds last night and while they've had a exceptional season in 2012 wearing uniforms that strikes an at least passing resemblance to the ones we saw last night, they haven't looked nearly as good. Last night their uniforms, for the first time all season, matched their play and their effort. As the Reds streak toward the postseason and try to match the accomplishments of their predecessors from the past, wouldn't it be cool if they did so while looking like them?
(Photo courtesy of The AP)
-My man Lance is on a Bronson Arroyo-for-the-Reds Hall of Fame kick. I need to think about that more and I probably lean toward waiting to see if he comes up big in the postseason before handing down a verdict. (That sentence by the way, sounded very self-important) But since we'll have years to debate that, let's that aside and appreciate what he's done here.
After last night's masterful performance, Bronson has ten wins. Say what you want about what wins say about a pitcher (IMO, over the course of a career they say a lot) but the guy has now won at least ten in five of his seven seasons here. Barring an injury or being skipped twice down the stretch, he'll go over 200 innings for a sixth time (the one time he didn't hit 200, he totaled 199). He's got a legit chance to get to 13 or 14 wins, and if he's really good (and he has been recently), he could get to 15 for the fourth time as a Red. If they don't skip a turn, he'll hit 32 starts for the seventh season since coming here.
He hasn't been dominant. He hasn't even really been great. And he's good for two completely disastrous starts per year (make 30+ a year and that'll happen), but find me someone since Jose Rjio's injury in 1995 who's done what Bronson Arroyo has done on the mound for this franchise.
There have been pitchers who've had excellent individual seasons or even a couple really good years in a row, but find me someone who's been a staff mainstay for a sustainable period of time, who's approached 90 wins as a Red (Arroyo has 89), who's thrown 1500 innings (Bronson is 56 away) and who's been as durable, able and willing to take the ball for the Reds. (He's made four starts here on three days rest. His ERA in those starts: 1.95)
I'll sit here and wait.
Maybe he's never been great, but he's been pretty good to very good for a very long time. Since Bronson first showed up in Cincinnati, with his horrific cornrows and mediocre guitar playing (sorry, he's just not very good), 33 other guys have made starts for the Reds. Some of them very good, most of them not, a few of them forgettable (someone named Adam Pettyjohn started a game for the Reds in 2008. I follow this team pretty closely. I can recall even the most obscure Reds. Adam Pettyjohn's work escapes my memory), and while 33 other guys have taken the hill for this team, Bronson has been taking the ball every fifth day the entire time.
And usually with good results. 137 of his 226 starts as a Red qualify as "quality starts." That's not bad. It might not blow you away, but if a starting pitcher gives his team a legit chance to win 60% of the time, he'll stick.
Bronson Arroyo has stuck.
Often we don't notice. Walk around the ballpark or go around your favorite bar and ask people who their favorite Red is. I can almost guarantee you two things: 1) People will find you creepy. 2) No one will say the name "Bronson Arroyo."
And I get that, especially now. The Reds have an an elite level hitter, a flashy and productive second baseman who oozes personality, another guy who's good for 30 bombs a year, two Rookie of the Year candidates, a centerfielder that every woman I now is tempted to throw their underpants at, and two Cy Young award candidates.
It's easy for a guy like Bronson to get lost in the shuffle.
But he shouldn't. Greatness is never ignored. But pretty-goodness over a long period of time often is. Bronson Arroyo's accomplishments for this franchise and his contributions to this team shouldn't either.
-The Reds are on pace to win 98 games. They might have the division clinched weeks before the season ends. Their best player's return seems imminent. They have a number and players and a manager who could win some hardware. They have a chance to win the World Series.
And we have people complaining about lineups that haven't been written for games that haven't been played.
Here's what's going to happen when Joey Votto comes back....
Joey Votto is going to play most of the time at first base. He'll probably get the occasional day off to rest his knee.
Todd Frazier will play.
Scott Rolen will play.
Ryan Ludwick will play.
No one is going to be permanently banished to the bench, left to rot as they wonder why the manager is ignoring them.
And no one is going to play every inning of every game either.
Frazier will play. Rolen will play. Ludwick will play. If one of them starts to play poorly, they'll play less. Also, other guys will play. I know this because this is how Dusty has managed the team all season. Playing time has been divvied up, sometimes to frustrating lengths, but everyone has gotten chances, even if some slightly more than others.
Before Votto's surgery, it's not like Frazier was forgotten. He was playing pretty regularly. Regularly doesn't mean every day, and won't mean every day for him, Rolen, Ludwick, and a number of other players once Joey returns.
This approach has worked. The standings tell me so.
-The Bengals play the Packers tonight. As for what I hope to see...
1) I would like it if the Bengals did not suffer any injuries.
2) I would like it they'd show Cueto v. Hamels on the video board at PBS.
3) I would like it if after the game I walked out of Paul Brown Stadium in love with both the team and its chances to win big in 2012
I'll let someone else sort through all the positional battles, a number of which remain intriguing. What also remains is the nagging feeling that this Bengals team might pretty good, and might be better than last year's but that won't be great and won't be markedly better than last year's.
I like this team. I don't yet love it.
That's not an indictment against what they've done their first two games. Actually, I'm pretty happy with the way they've played. And it's not a statement about the direction of the franchise. I really like what they're doing.
But I wanna love 'em.
I want to look at the back seven of the defense and be wowed. I'm not, especially with the injuries to the secondary. I want assurance that Andrew Whitworth bounces back, that Clint Boling is up to the task, and that the Bengals don't just have a different and more reliable starter at tailback, but a much, much, better player at that position. I want to have strong feelings about whomever the number two receiver is. I think I will down the road. I don't know that I will in two weeks. I want to be confident that the offense can successfully expand and that the defense can make the leap. I want affirmation that Andy Dalton is set to make the jump and that someone on defense can be the guy who keeps opposing offensive coordinators up all night. I want to walk out of there with complete faith that the players deeper down the depth chart can compete against ones. And I want something tangible that suggests that a meaningful improvement from last year should be expected, and not just hoped for.
They've got so many things going well for it, and we've covered them extensively. Part of this is a byproduct of the newness and optimism of the beginning of training camp subsiding and plenty of time to think and worry about things between day one of camp and day one of the season.
I like this team. I don't yet love it.
I doubt I will tonight. I hope I do in 18 days.
-Come back for "One Mo' Thing" later, where our Twitter followers pick today's topics. Catch up with the stars of The Sandlot by going here. And enjoy this statement about how gaga we are over celebrities by watching this...