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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.
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If it's about baseball, these guys usually have something to say about it. And it's usually funny.
Booze, Ladies, and Football.
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A guy from Cincinnati, who uh, well he calls it like it is.
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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.
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The other Larry Brown, not the guy who's coached half the teams in the NBA.
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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.
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Who Dey Revolution
No site better captures the frustration of being a Bengals fan better than this one. Fan empowerment at its best.
And just like that, the Reds have their leadoff guy. I talked about why I like this deal at the in yesterday's One Mo Thing, but a lot of it bears reiterating.
Shin-Soo Choo is a better leadoff option than what the Reds already had. No, he might not have been at the top of the list of potential top-of-the-order guys, but considering both what he is, namely better suited for the top spot than Stubbs, Phillips, or Cozart, and what he didn't cost, namely a starting pitcher, this is a win for the Reds.
The key for me is not only what Shin-Soo Choo is, but what he cost. Drew Stubbs is gone, which is good for Drew and good for the Reds. He also cost Didi Gregorius. Nothing is for free.
Look, I know the Didi hype machine kicked into gear this offseason. John Erardi sent it into hyperdrive by comparing him to Davey Concepcion. But Didi was blocked by Zack Cozart, a player that neither the Indians or Diamondbacks likely wanted. Cozart might not ever be a star, but can a good team get by with him hitting seventh in the batting order while playing steady defense? Well, a 97-win team miscast him at the top of the order during his rookie season. I'm guessing these guys can thrive with Cozart hitting lower in the order.
And Choo didn't cost a starting pitcher. So far this offseason, the Reds have signed a closer (and overpaid out of necessity), a left fielder (and overpaid out of necessity) and added a leadoff guy all without, at least to this point, sacrificing a starting pitcher.
Starting pitching was a major strong suit last season, and so far the Reds have either upgraded or maintained at key spots all without cutting into their rotation.
The Reds could still trade Mike Leake, but it's now very unlikely that they'll need to deal either Bailey or Latos, and even keeping Leake makes sense. The Reds will probably need a sixth starter at some point in 2013, especially given Chapman's probably inning limit, and you could do a lot worse than Leake as the sixth option to start.
And yes, the Reds will miss Stubbs' defense. But back when we decided that finding a leadoff hitter was at the top of Walt Jocketty's winter shopping list, we subsequently agreed that that player was most likely to be a center fielder and was likely to not be as good with the glove.
If Choo helps the offense, we'll deal with regression in center. And while Choo doesn't have a ton of experience in center field, it's not like a guy who's already very good in right will be a total disaster in center. He's flanked by good outfielders to his left and right, and he's got middle infielders in front of him who can cover ground.
Choo isn't perfect. Despite the higher OBP, he does whiff a lot. And he wasn't very good againt lefties in 2012 (.199), but the fact that he's a lefty should please Chris Heisey fans. It should be easier for Dusty to find regular starts for Heisey, not a platoon, but regular starts. It will be a lot easier to do than when the right-handed Heisey was backing up the right-handed Gomes, Ludwick, and Stubbs.
And it clears the way for Billy Hamilton in 2014. The addition of Choo lessens the likelihood that we'll have to listen to annoying calls for Billy to get promoted after a week's worth of AAA at-bats.
I like this deal. I like it because of what it does for local slingers of sports merch. With Jordan Shipley and Drew Stubbs both gone, there's a chance your lady needs a new jersey this Christmas.
And I like what this deal was coupled with - the Kevin Youkilis signing by the Yankees. No, we can move on to other topics besides whom the Reds should fill the leadoff spot with AND we no longer have to hear people banging the drum for the Reds to sign Youk SOLELY because he's a "hometown guy."
There's still some work to do. The Reds need bench help and they could use another bullpen arm. But a little more than two months from spring training they've addressed their most important need without cutting into their biggest strength.
I like this deal.