Reds 8, Nationals 7
I'm sure Doc is in the WLW studio right now fielding a lot of calls on what a great job Jerry Narron did managing tonight in the Reds' 8-7 victory over the Nats.
I'm being facetious here (facetious, by the way, is the only word in the English language with the five vowels in the order).
But my point is managers never get credit when everything goes right. And a lot went right for the Reds on night when things started very wrong. Narron managed the bullpen well to get seven innings of shutout ball from them. He used his pinch-hitters the right way, too, so Javy Valentin was up in a situation to win the game, which he did.
After Valentin got the Reds the lead, Narron sent up Juan Castro instead of Jeff Conine to pinch-hit. That meant Castro played third in the ninth, Ryan Freel went from third to center, and Norris Hopper went from center to left. Freel ran down Ryan Zimmerman's drive in the right-center that looked like a game-tying double. Hopper doesn't make that catch.
I don't think Narron deserves a medal for his decisions, but if one of them had gone the other way and the Reds would have lost, he'd be getting lit up right now. That is right of every fan. But you've got to give the guy credit when things go right.
After the game, Chris Welsh interviewed Narron for FSN. He concluded with "thanks, coach." A major faux pas when talking to a manager. Bill "Seg" Dennison was once sent down to John McNamara's office to next day to apologize for such a gaffe. Narron took it in stride.
"That's the least insult I've heard lately."