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John Fay
John Fay has been the Reds beat writer for the Enquirer since 2001. Prior to that, he served in a variety of roles for the Enquirer: backup Reds writer, UC beat writer, backup Bengals writer and as a general assignment reporter. He is a Cincinnati native and a graduate of Elder High School and the University of Dayton.

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Friday, May 18, 2007

Krivsky on Narron: 'It's not going to happen'

Wayne Krivsky said in the strongest -- I mean strongest -- terms possible that manager Jerry Narron's job is safe after Reds' 9-4 loss to the Indians.

Krivsky took exception to a response I made to a question from Marty Brennaman during our second inning chat. Marty asked if I thought Narron was safe if the team continued to play the way it is. I said no, or words to that effect. "It's not going to happen," Krivsky said after the game. "Get off of it." I did three radio interviews today. I was asked about it in all three. I answered the same way: I don't think it's Narron's fault. But managers tend to take the blame. The old you-can't-fire-the-players thing. So unless the Reds turn it around, my guess is, Narron will take the fall at some point.


at 11:21 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why is Krivsky listening to your radio interviews? If Narron's job is so safe, why is Krivsky getting upset about people talking about it? Why is Edwin Encarnacion in AAA with Juan Castro taking his ABs? Why did our lineup consist of Norris Hopper, Juan Castro, and Chad Moeller? Why does Narron consistantly bat Conine cleanup?

The mess is not all Narron's fault, but alot of it is. This team is not as bad as their record is, and Narron has lost the team.

He needs to go.

at 12:50 AM Blogger George said...

Good for you John! And don't sweat Krivsky getting bent out of shape. ..I don't buy his macho act. What does he think he is, a surly NFL coach after a loss? C'mon, Wayne. And by the way, Krivsky's wrong--it could happen if Castellini says so. One phone call. And that call may come soon if Bob starts becoming the butt of other owners' jokes, or he starts getting pitying looks from people. Castellini is a proud guy and he's not going to take much more of this, especially given the promisies he's made and the "impatience" about winning he claims to have.

at 12:57 AM Blogger Redsheart said...

I took so-what attitude. I'll just have to root for the Reds, Go Reds!
...Anyway, I guess our bullpen Krivsky has prepared is too awful. Any manager couldn't treat it. Fixing the bullpen pitchers can't pitch well when we have a narrow lead is the first thing to do for the team. Krivsky needs to do something right now!

at 1:15 AM Blogger cincikid said...

What happened to the Krivsky of last year? Is he gun shy? After the Kearns / Lopez trade. Apparently he feels pretty strongly about keeping Narron as the Skipper. For what ever reason I don't know. I'm surprised he wasn't axed after the collapse last season.
Now would be the time to make a trade. He could put a blindfold on and pick anyone of the 98% of the players not performing to trade. He could pick up any major league player at any position and make a case that he was filling holes on the roster because lord knows that we have too many that can be filled by one trade or even one off season.

at 3:09 AM Blogger Pat said...

if you don't have a dominate player in the locker room, then the manager has to be the guy. The reds don't have either.

Maybe they're waiting for the Cards to fire La Russa?

at 4:30 AM Anonymous jaxhrs1 said...

It's time to stop blaming Dunn and for the organization to find a way to trade him to the AL. I heard a comment on the TV broadcast that he doesn't enjoy DH'ing in interleague games but it's clear that's exactly what he is. My best to Tim.

at 6:57 AM Blogger Mark said...


Maybe the reason Jerry's job is safe is because NO ONE else wants to come in and try to clean up his messes!

And no, I'd say, don't get off the subject, John. I don't think you work for Krivsky so KEEP THE HEAT ON. If the front office continue to ignore the fans, some one has got to reflect what we are thinking.

One big positive on this team continues to be Brandon Phillips. After digging an early season hole at the plate, he has demonstrated that he not only belongs but is very deserving of a spot on the all star team.bw

at 7:36 AM Anonymous jc said...

when does bobby valentines season end. i'm not kidding. the guy is a winner and can light a fire under some of these guys. i have to admit...i did not see this lousy season coming. i thought lohse was going to have a solid season... we would either be in it... or he would fetch a pretty price come deadline time.
i am old enough to have watched atlanta the year they threw glavine and smoltz out there along with every fifth day the first year. it was not always pretty but it has to be done to reach the next level. none of the three were killing it in AAA but they made a decision to go with them. we will never get to the next level with who starts with harang, arroyo and belisle. its time to see what those guys can do. as soon as bray gets ready.... release stanton and get majewski here as quick as possible.

at 7:39 AM Anonymous Sedi said...

Castellini said he was going to bring championship baseball back to Cincinnati. I say bring back the Big Red Machine, they can't be any worse than this team is now and he would be a man of his word.

at 7:45 AM Anonymous Allan said...

Narron didnt blow the early lead early, Lohse did. Face it, this team has major flaws. On a contending team, Lohse and Belisle anchor the bullpen. On a contending team, Harang and Arroyo are number twos if not threes. On a contending team, Stanton is is nowhere to be found and Coffey is in AAA. The Reds dont have a leadoff hitter unless Freel is in the lineup.

Would I like to see Narron pick a lineup and stay with it with a MINOR change here and there to get someone a day off, YES! Other than that, I cant complain until Iv'e seen him manage a team of major leaguers. Right now, he has some talent, but not enough.

at 9:39 AM Anonymous Justin Fernandez said...

Narron AND Krivsky need to GO.

NARRON is the WORST manager in Reds and quite possibly baseball history.

at 9:41 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sure its comforting for Narron to hear his job is safe, despite the horrendous start to the season. This team is much better than it has played. Part of the team's struggles is related to the personnel on the field, but a big part of it is the leadership and management of the team. If the Reds continue to struggle, then Narron has to go. The other question has to be asked...when does Krivsky's job become endangered? He has signed a few key players, but he has also had some mistakes. Last year it was all about releasing players and eating salaries...it will soon come to that again if things continue. I don't think Mr. Castellini is an owner that will put up with that for long, nor will he take the Reds being in the cellar all year. So we will just have to wait and see who's head will roll first. - MB

at 9:43 AM Anonymous Justin Fernandez said...

On a contending team, there are no Lohses, Belisles, Stantons, Coffees, Castros batting higher than 8th, or Miltons (well just name a Reds pitcher besides Arroyo and Harang and Weathers and you wouldn't find them anywhere near a roster of a contender). On a contending team, the manager doesn't resemble Narron, AT ALL. On a contending team, the guys actually run hard all the time. Isn't this the team of Charlie Hustle? What a bunch of lazy, undisciplined, sloppy, fundamentally lacking players we have. No way Phillips gets doubled off or Hamilton jogs down to first on his ground ball last night if Pinella were hear! Let's face it, this team is mentally whipped and that's ALL Narron's fault!

at 9:45 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not going to another game until "baseball guy" is gone. He is a minor league manger, nothing more. When he gets fired he will never manage a major league team again. The Reds are the ONLY team who would ever hired him at this point in his career in the first place. I'm sure he is a great bench guy, but should not be leading an organization. Castellini is going to step up and pay for an honest to goodness real MLB manager. It has been a while since the Reds have had one. Jack Mckeon mixed in with Bob Boone and Dave Miley. Good lord, what a joke!

at 10:21 AM Blogger Jaybee said...

"NARRON is the WORST manager in Reds and quite possibly baseball history."

You must be too young to remember Vern Rapp and Russ Nixon - nice guys but horrible managers of the Reds. And then there was Bob Boone, who NEVER found a starting lineup he liked for 2 days in a row. Or Dave Miley, a terrific AAA manager but totally overmatched at the major league level.

I'm not taking up for Narron. A lot of his moves totally baffle me from a baseball standpoint but he's far from the worst in Reds history.

at 11:17 AM Anonymous ADMS said...

How much worse can it get? Is the Ohio River going to change to blood and are the plague of locusts right around the corner? GABP already resembles a smoking crater after during the 8th inning so imagine it when they get back after just destroying whatever morale is left on this wretched road trip.
Haven't WE paid for this team? Didn't WE pay for this stadium? We buy the hot dogs, the sodas, and the shirts and jerseys. So, why is Reds management just ignoring us? I don't think they will be able to ignore the 95% empty seats once we are 20+ games out and the humidity is thick and it is pushing 100 degrees. Who's going to sit through those games? (Ooohhh - Pittsburgh is in town, we're 25 games out, we've walked in the winning run in how many games, it's 100 degrees with humidity that will take the paint off of a car, and it will cost 100+ bucks for tickets and food and parking. SIGN ME UP!!!)
Krivsky, you're losing us. I'll use the word "lost" when season ticket renewal time comes around. To everyone in the front office, THANK YOU for giving us a competitive team with decent pitching and fielding and a deep farm system all paid for by a modern stadium with all of the suites and boxes and perks and rich TV and radio deals. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! Oh wait. That's what was promised. Whoops.
Ball four. We lose again.

at 11:34 AM Blogger Mr. Redlegs said...

Krivsky has to go?

How stupid are some of you people--so-called knowledgeable Cincinnati fans of yore?

Krivsky has been on the job 16 months. He's just started to get things smoothed out from the years of neglect from the Marge Shott and Uncle Carl. If you fired the GM of every team that gets off to a bad start there would be about 20 openings every year and not an ounce of staff, development and scouting stability in the system.

The general manager does more than hire and fire the manager and maneuver the roster.

This not fantasy sports. You should know that. Cincinnati fans are supposed to be some of the best and most knowledgeable in the game.

But that was 1976. Look at some of you now.

at 11:41 AM Blogger Mr. Redlegs said...

Narron is the worst manager in Reds history, or the history of baseball?

I guess the oldest franchise baseball really wasn't born until 1997 (when Jack McKeon took over).

So you know, Jaybee, in recent memory, Ray Knight was a lot worse than Narron. Bob Boone? Wow. Vern Rapp was worse than them all combined. Don Heffner was pretty useless. Dan Howley and Chuck Dressen? Yeesh.

The list goes on and on. Narron doesn't rank as the in the top 10 worst in team history, least of all MLB history.

Good grief. Where did these so-called kne-jerk "fans" come from?

at 12:14 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...


You and Paul have always told it like it is. For the sake of Red's fans everyone, who have watched this once-proud franchise become the laughinstock of MLB, KEEP UP THE HEAT!!! Krivsky imported Joe Mays and Kyle Lohse from Minnesota, a classy organization that should be the Reds' model, but inexplicably is not. Mays was terrible before we got him and he was terrible with the Reds. The Twins gave up on Lohse and the Reds should do the same. How much longer can Homer Bailey continue to pitch at AAA? Does anyone really care if Lohse or Milton are designated for assignment and some combination of Bailey, Livinston and Dumatrait replace them? Bob Castellini needs to make good on the promise he made to Reds' fans to impose his considerable will on the organization. The Kearns/Lopez trade is likely the second worst in Reds' history. The Reds never filed a grievance which implies their bluster about being deceived by the Nationals was just that, bluster ... to cover themselves for a horrible trade. Those who point to Lopez and Kearns current stats are ignoring the huge difference between RFK (which is a pitchers' park) and GABP (which is a hitter park, albeit a second-class stadium ... the best evidence of which is the fact you won't see the All-Star Game in Cincinnati in our life time.) Krivsky is simply not doing enough to put a competitive team on the field. Having said that, the players either don't respect Narron or don't care, either of which mean its time to move on. Bucky Dent is a former Yankee, who played on winners. Let him take over with a mandate to kick some butt. I have to tell you, I live in Chicago. It's so refreshing to watch Ozzie Guillen and Lou Piniella kick butt and take names. Lou, in particular, lets guys have it on the field and in the press. The players don't dare cross Ozzie or Piniella. Case in point, one time last year, a pitcher for the White Sox failed to retaliate after two Sox players got hit after a Sox offensive explosion. The next day, the pitcher was sent down. Another case in point, in the 9th inning of a Cub's game several weeks ago, Ryan Dempster came in with guys on first and second, and promptly proceed to walk the next guy on four pitches, and threw ball one to the next hitter. Lou comes flying off the bench, and without covering his mouth, screamed at Dempster "What the [expletive] are you doing!!!" Dempster proceeded to retire the next two batters, and the Cubs won. The other day, when the Cubs lost a game by giving up 5 or 6 runs in the 9th inning, thanks again primarily to poor pitching by Dempster and a reliever who came in after Dempster, Lou told the press after the game that the second reliever was in tough spot because he had to come into a tough spot to try and "clean up my garbage." I realize here are limits here, and Cincinnati is not Chicago, but Narron's players are lazy, undisciplined, sloppy, fundamentally lacking players. When Gonzalez is not making routine plays, you know something is wrong. Someone told me over Mother's Day when in was back in Cincinnati that Brandon Phillips had told a reporter the problem was in the clubhouse, but wouldn't elaborate. I don't know if Phillips actually said it or not, but something is not right in River City ... and it begins with "p" and its stands for "pooeey" baseball. Mr. Castellini, do yourself a favor, and listen to your fans. It's broke. Please fix it.

at 12:28 PM Anonymous mikec said...

The "Narron's job is safe" comments don't help. What this team needs more than anything is accountability. I have 10 people that work for me. If my staff was as unsuccessful as the Reds have been I'm certain I would be called into my boss' office and yelled at. And if my staff continued to under-produce I would be fired. I might be the smartest person in my building, but MY JOB is to make my staff perform well. If I don't do that, nothing else matters.

The management needs to put pressure on. Tell Narron if they don't win five of eight on the upcoming homestand he gets the ax (that's more than reasonable considering they play the Pirates and Nats).

I still stand by Krivsky as a good GM. It's hard to transform something a franchise so weak into something strong. But frankly his defensiveness has the sound to me of someone who is feeling the pressure himself or someone who is being forced to defend a position he doesn't agree with.

at 1:25 PM Blogger Dan H said...

Someone on the field or in the front office for that matter has to show some emotion. It clearly lacks it right now. On Arroyo's Ball 4/strike 3 pitch which lost the game on the walk off walk, did anyone really argue the call with Rapuano? I didn't see it. Yea the game was over, but you would think someone would explode from the frustration of this losing streak. This team needs an emotional charge to help break it from this downward spiral. Argue a call, any call, get tossed from the game, get in someone's face, break up a DP with a hard slide into the fielder, somebody say something to pull this team together! I still wonder what Phillips meant by its in this clubhouse remark? Who were the players going through the motions during the team workout on Friday? I read another beat writer comment a few weeks ago that some players don't seem to care, if that's true they need to be escorted out the closest door. I still stand by Krivsky and Narron, changing managers in season seldom works after the initial honeymoon period of a couple weeks is over. Its the players that need to step it up a notch or three!

at 1:45 PM Anonymous Justin Fernandez said...

Jaybee, points well taken but NARRON is (mis-) managing a FAR MORE TALENTED bunch of guys (with the Reds) than Boone and Rapp and producing only marginally better than NIXON!!!! (you'll note Miley's tenure was too short to really mean much in this comparison but he is the worst of the "manglers" you cited).

Here are the stats:

BOONE 181-206 .468
RAPP 140-160 .467
NARRON 287-333 .463 through 5/18
NIXON 206-307 .402
MILEY 22-35 .386

at 2:01 PM Anonymous Justin Fernandez said...

"We have not played anywhere near where we're capable of playing," said Narron, who was a minor-league teammate of Rangers GM Doug Melvin with Fort Lauderdale in 1976. "It's my job to get guys to achieve and overachieve. I don't know what we're going to change."

NARRON ADMITS he "don't know." It's professional MALPRACTICE to not fire NARRON today!

And if Krivsky won't do it, he ought to be fired too. This is ridiculous.

This team is MUCH MORE TALENTED than 16-26. They're playing lazy, sloppy, undisciplined, stupid-ball, and look like they've given up.

Shame on NARRON for being CLUELESS.

Changing the lineup everyday is stupid and counterproductive and does not begin to address the core problem.

Which is NARRON. He stinks as a manager, motivator, teacher, strategist, etc.

at 2:04 PM Blogger Mr. Redlegs said...

I laugh . . . hoohoo-hehe-haha-hardy-har-har . . because today's Reds fans are even dumber than I dared imagine:

Bob Castellini needs to make good on the promise he made to Reds' fans to impose his considerable will on the organization.

Show us where Castellini has renegged on his promise? Because a magic wane was waved and yet no miracles in a year?

The payroll was bumped last year to make a run. They signed all their key draftees. They have given away tickets, made the cost of going to a game one of the lowest in the baseball, and stood front and center to the fan base since buying the team.

The Kearns/Lopez trade is likely the second worst in Reds' history.

Not even in the top five. And so what if it was? That trade is just 10 months old and the end result has yet to play out. Besides, the fans chased Lopez out of town with his ass between his legs and would have done the same to Kearns in due time. They weren't going to win with those guys, so what's the ongoing obsession/beef? Especially if Majewski and Bray get healthy and solve the bullpen issues.

Krivsky is simply not doing enough to put a competitive team on the field.

Really? How do you know? Are you monitoring his work schedule and phone calls?

Funny how fans act like making a trade doesn't require an agreeable trade partner, or that a player's contract, agent or his service time status makes any difference. Nope.

This team needs an emotional charge to help break it from this downward spiral.

Sure, screaming at the umpire, flipping bats out of the dugout, smashing a watercooler . . . that really eliminates the throwing errors, bad pitching, runners getting picked off base, etc. Nothing says "winner" like going ballistic.

Emotion works in college, not in the pros.

If my staff was as unsuccessful as the Reds have been I'm certain I would be called into my boss' office and yelled at. And if my staff continued to under-produce I would be fired.

And just how many millionaires do you have on staff with guaranteed contracts and protected by the most powerful labor union in the world?

Bucky Dent is a former Yankee, who played on winners. Let him take over with a mandate to kick some butt.

In order to kick butt and have players respond, you must have earned the right and respect to kick butt. When you have been a very successful player and won championships as a manager, only then can you kick butt. Otherwise, the players just snicker and roll their eyes. You can count on one hand the managers that actually kick butt and get away with it. For the most part, it doesn't work.

Again, this ain't college.

But, hey, do something! Right? Even if it's illogical, unworkable, panic-driven and sodered by irrationality.

at 5:23 PM Anonymous Justin Fernandez said...

You're right, the Reds ain't college...in fact I doubt they could be .500 or above in ANY college league.

The only Reds fans that are dumb are the ones who keep buying tickets to this poorly run product that trots out onto the field each homestand night.

Clueless leading the pre-surrendered is what today's Reds are. It makes me laugh when apologists and those deep in denial pretend that Krivvie and Jerrie KNOW WHAT THEY ARE DOING or ARE WORTH KEEPING IN CINCY.

They're a joke. The Reds are a joke (it's not losing, per se, it's HOW they are losing).

Not one penny of mine is going to be spent on the Reds until Narron is gone, and I'll buy twice as many tickets once Krivvie is sent packing.

We might as well have a clueless banker pinching pennies. Oh for the days of Marge and Sweet Lou! (If Pinella had this team we'd be 23 and 19 and destined for the playoffs, not 16 and 26 and destined to beat KC and the NATS for the worst record in baseball (keep Narron, and the Reds will attain the worst record in baseball this year).

at 5:26 PM Anonymous Sparky's Ghost said...

Um, perhaps the reason the Reds aren't winning is that in a manic-depressive fit they demoted one of their best hitters to AAA?

Note to dinosaur GMs (that's you Wayne, since you're clearly not able to get it): When a young, extremely promising player does what Encarnacion did last year, and then (gasp!) struggles the following April, that is what is known to sober baseball people as a cold month. You know, the phrase you'd use when one of your 32-year-olds does the same thing? Yes, yes, that one. 24-year-olds who have ALREADY PROVEN THEY CAN HIT IN THE BIGS are not magically immune to them (shocking, I know).

Not only is Encarnacion a key to the all-important drive to finish 4th in the NL Central (since the Reds seem congenitally incapable of embracing a longer-term plan than "lets see if we can break .500 again next month"), he's actually one of parts to the next good Reds team (if there were a plan in place for one of those).

THINK. It's really not just for stathead geeks. You're allowed to do it too, Wayne.

There must be an AL team that would salivate to get Adam Dunn's combo of OBP and power (Oakland?), and his leaden glove would be less exposed there. But get Edwin back up somehow. And don't bench him the next time he has an off night. Good teams don't stunt the growth of their young stars that way.

at 5:35 PM Anonymous Sparky's Ghost said...

Oh, and have we noticed that Joey Votto has been tearing the cover off the ball for the last month in AAA (rumor has it that getting fitted for contacts made a big difference)? Might be time to start thinking about bringing him up and giving the two-headed sub-replacement-level Scoff Hattanine monster some time to the reflect on the decent-but-not-more-than-that years they had back in their prime. Good (heck, even mediocre) teams get more out of their 1B slot than this.

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