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Reds Insider
From news of the day to news of the weird, John Fay provides a glimpse of what it’s like to cover the Cincinnati Reds

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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Thursday, July 26, 2007

Reds 6, Brewers 5

Another nice victory for the Redlegs. Francisco Cordero blew the save in the ninth and took the loss in the 10th. It's pretty impressive to beat a guy like that.

Watching the Brewers, you see why the Reds don't have to blow things up completely to hope to compete in the NL Central next season. The Brewers have led nearly all the way, and they aren't overwhelming better than the Reds -- at least this version of Reds. The Reds are suddenly winning games that they were losing before Pete Mackanin took over. A lot of that is attitude.


"In general this team, at least as far I'm concerned, looks like any other winning team I ever had," Mackanin said. "They look like they're into it. I don't want to get giddy about all this. I want to be under control. The key is when you lose a couple in a row how you rebound."

The Reds have passed that test. They lost three of four to the New York Mets and responded with a three-game sweep of the Atlanta Braves. They lost three of four to the Florida Marlins and responded by taking three of four from Milwaukee.


27 Comments:

at 6:11 PM Blogger steve said...

John
I really like the way Pete has managed this team so far I really
think he should get a real good look for next season. What do you think? I hope they just dont hire a big name because its a big name.

 
at 6:14 PM Blogger Barry said...

Pete is doing an amazing job so far. This is a fun team to watch.

I give Krivsky a lot of credit for selecting Pete as the interim manager.

 
at 7:10 PM Anonymous Justin Fernandez said...

Mac, Keppinger, Junior, Dunn...Hatte (great hit there in the clutch) made a huge difference this week.

Thank you Reds! How nice it is to see pro ball played consistently

(except for you know whos....)

 
at 7:47 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been saying for a long time now that a key reason why the Reds have under-achieved is the fact that David Ross has been hitting about as well a major league pitcher. Reds' management and most Reds' fans have continually suggested the opposite, i.e., that Ross' offensive ineptitude is more than offset by his defensive prowess, and the way he handles the pitching staff. These arguments fly in the face of the horrible track record of the Reds pitchers this year, and the fact that the Reds' inability to score runs has consistently snatched defeats from the jaws of victories. Just asked Aaron Harang. The Reds will not likely make the playoffs this year, but the more we see of Javy Valentin, the more we'll see his offensive skills, and how little the team misses Ross.

 
at 7:54 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

ALL PROBLEMS SOLVED...

In general this team, at least as far I'm concerned, looks like any other winning team I ever had," Mackanin said.

WHAT TEAMS HAS HE HAD

SAME OLD SAME OLD...THIS MILD EUPHORIA WILL TRANSLATE INTO PETE BEING GIVEN AN EXTENSION AND HERE WE GO AGAIN

MILWAUKEE IS A CRAP TEAM AND SHORTLY WILL BE OUTTA FIRST PLACE

YOU WANT A TRUE TAKE ON THESE CURRENT WONDERFUL REDS.. SCROLL BACK TO WHAT THE METS AND FLORIDA DID TO US RECENTLY

OH WELL.. WE HAVE ACCEPTED MEDIOCRITY FOR THE PAST 17 YEARS WHATS ANOTHER 5 OR 10

 
at 7:59 PM Blogger Mark said...

Milwaukee is treading water right now and letting the rest of this division hang around. All of a sudden a 12 1/2 game margin doesn't seem as insurmountable... Not saying the Reds are in the driver's seat but if they get to about 8 or so games in the next 2 weeks, it may generate interest in a team that seemed destined for the worst record in baseball. Go figure! And of course if they pull off a miracle we can give all the credit to Boom Boom Hume;)

 
at 10:40 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mark -

Respectfully, I think there's been pretty keen interest in this team all season. Several fans posting on this blog have suggested the fans are, in fact, too interested in the team, and in dissecting every nuance of every loss. And attendance has been pretty darn good, given the team's record and sub-major league play at various times. Judging from today's comments, many folks still believe this year's team may even be able to get back into the race. It won't take much for everyone to jump back on the band wagon

As for Mackanin, I was an early skeptic, and someone who believed a big name was needed to turn things around. However, the club has been very competitive under Mackanin, and true to his word, he's trying some new combinations which have yielded excellent results against quality teams. Say what you will about the Brew Crew's declining fortunes ... fact is they're still in first place last time I checked, and they've been there all year. If the Reds continuing playing at or near this clip, Mackanin will have earned an extension.

 
at 11:04 PM Anonymous ADMS said...

If Mac is getting the most out of the team, and they like playing for him, he should get a longer look after the season. After the season, if he does get the "interm" tag removed, I do hope the money the Reds set aside for a huge name manager gets used for additional coaches and for the bullpen.
With the trade deadline fast approaching, and this can change in a micro-second, but it looks like the Reds are going to stay put with what they have. If that's the case, I do see some hope - and nothing that follows is with pitching!
If Dunn stays, I think he has to leave the outfield. You see, I hope the current batch of starters realizes that they were all involved with this trainwreck and if they want the contract and to win, going back to basics is probably needed. We put Dunn at first and during the winter he learns the position. We should keep Javi's bat and require near constant practice to help with his less-than-perfect speed with throws to second.
At first, when I started reading the "Freel is overrated" comments, honestly, I mumbled "whatever..." Well, I think I'm eating crow. Watching him hit leadoff was a very painful experience. Way too many 0-fer days. I think he has just became on the chopping block. We have some very capable AAA players just waiting to take his place.
I've stressed it before and I'll say it again - if Junior wants to stay a Red, make it happen. If his goal is to retire in Seattle, same thing - try to make it happen. Best case - he wants to do what Smith did when he played in Phoenix but got the 1-day/ceremonial contract back with Dallas to retire as a Cowboy.
Last but not least - what is that saying - losing breeds losing? Yes, they are pro ballplayers, but if day in and day out they see their work getting bombed out by the bullpen or starters that can't get out of the 4th inning, that has to be crushing seeing something like an 8 run lead vanish. I firmly believe that once the middle relief gets worked out, we can easily win 20+ more games and then the feeling from the dugout to the clubhouse and with us fans should improve tenfold.
Given Krivsky's decisions this season, is he the one that deserves the credit for Pete or was there a lot of input from others? If the upper management gets us a bullpen, we'll forget about all of this!

 
at 11:28 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mark,
10.5 behind the Cubs sounds like a much bigger gap right now than 12.5 behind the Brewers. Then again, the Cubs can find ways to lose with the best of them!

 
at 11:32 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Milwaukee is treading water right now and letting the rest of this division hang around. All of a sudden a 12 1/2 game margin doesn't seem as insurmountable..."

I have been of the opinion for about 3 weeks that the margin to watch is the distance to the Cubs.

Given the general trends and the last 4 days I would not be at all surprised if the Reds finished 2nd in the division but to the Cubs instead of to the Brewers.

This won't happen if the Reds unload much more than Lohse; but if they essentially stand pat, it well could.

 
at 12:14 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah, the double edge sword the amount of guys you trade now could hurt you... maybe. Once the Reds find a bullpen worth trusting this team is probably good enough to be the best team in the central division... but overcoming that 12.5/10.5 games back margin is huge. That is why only a select few have ever come from so far back to make the playoffs. Until certain pitchers aren't pitching for the Reds anymore or in different roles (or see a sports shrink) that won't happen.

It is nice to follow the Reds and know they can win and want to win. What will happen when Eddie, Bray and Hamilton are back? fun days are ahead. Maybe not the playoffs, but winning baseball... finally... and maybe for the longer haul.

Adrian

 
at 4:59 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I bet the jokers that think Mackanin's success warrants a hire for next season are also calling for Mike Gosling to be in the rotation.

Listen. Pete Mackanin is nothing special. Look at the track records of teams that undergo a change in managers during the season. They tend to win more than lose for a while, then come back down to earth. We saw what happened in Florida. The Reds looked awful. It's only a matter of time before they return to that form.

And I'm sick of the front office. There are certain players that should not be on a Major League roster. Stanton is old and fat and done. He's had better days. Now he's just pitiful. Pedro Lopez hits .240 in AA, puts up a good month hitting .333 in AAA, and that warrants a callup to the ML? You've got to be kidding me. The kid can't play in the Major Leagues. He never will. Also - Juan Castro is as reliable as it gets for the infield, but for a team that needs as much offensive help as it can get, the Reds should not have the luxury of carrying a guy that can't hit worth a damn anymore. Mike Gosling is about to get torn up. We saw it last year. He's a tweener. He'll always have good #'s in AAA, but then, sooner or later, the players in the MLB will just eat him alive. He reminds me of a guy named Chris Michalak (ring a bell? 1 good start last year, then xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx)

Finally, could someone please teach Ryan Freel how to be a leadoff hitter? It seems like last year he was such a better spark plug. It makes me sick watching him swing at the first pitch he sees. Watch other leadoff hitters like Rollins and Pierre who always work the count until they either walk or make contact.

 
at 7:36 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

To all the die hard reds fans

You are letting your emotions cloud the reality of the situation.

And frankly.. you are part of the problem...keep going to games and accept this crap that has been put out on the filed...why would Castellini make any changes?

The Reds have no chance of doing anything this year...oh please ...quit deluding yourselves

Are you people mature adults with any semblance of perspective?

I agree with anon6:54 pm..

You all need to take chill pills, reflect on the losing for the past 15 or so years. Miley comes in ... and we saw improvement and we wanted Miley..Same with Narron.

And here we go again

This organization needs a top flight experienced manager and most like a good GM

Mature adults don't get lost in the moment nor do they ignore the history of a situation .Grow up

Why all of you want to continue to field a loser and accept mediocrity amazes me

 
at 8:41 AM Anonymous jc said...

i agree that this team does not need to be blown up to be competitive in the central.... but it needs some work and good luck to compete with big money clubs, the angels and the tigers.
we had a couple of guys with career years last year who have come back to earth. freel is better suited as a utility player and ross is a servicable defensive catcher. gonzalez is a huge addition at shortstop and will play better once his personal sitution is sortd out. those who think that the health of his son ius not affecting him live in a vaccum. krivsky has won more than he has lost.
dumatrait only went five last night. might mean it is on the horizon. i love the way hatteberg plays the game... but he along with lohse are the tradable parts of this team that might bring something. dunn is too young and too valuable.... and the pleasure of watching griffey is too much fun. sorry. livingston has done a good job. get dumatrait here... get homer healthy... put belisle in the pen. lets see what happens.

 
at 8:53 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the 6:54pm Anonymous Comment

Stop screaming for a second, take a deep breath, and look at Mackanin's managing background.

He has managed hundreds of games in the minors, with success at every level, especially AAA.

He has managed many years of winter ball in Venezuela, Mexico, Puerto Rico, etc.

He has won the Caribbean World Series.

He has been selected Minor League Manager of the year.

He knows how to handle pro players with their unique personalities.

So let's enjoy the rest of the season.

 
at 8:55 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Two of the Mets losses were very well played games. We just lost. Baseball is a 162 game season it happens. What bothers me is when we play like crap and lose that certainly was not the case in New York.
Truth is they double our payroll, all other things being equal they should kick our ass.

 
at 9:51 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

John, I agree with you! I simply don't understand why others are suggesting that the Reds trade every piece that has value, when the team is very close to competing next year. Trading Griffey, Dunn, etc. would put off any chance of winning for at least a couple of years. With next year in mind, we should be buyers, not sellers.

 
at 10:32 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Reds shouldn't be dismantled. The offense could you another contact hitter with some speed and the middle relief needs a complete overhaul. No way I'd trade Dunn or Griffery for any of those types of players. Hatteberg, Conine, Ross, Lohse would be a better trade for those parts. If Dunn or Griffey are traded, we better get top line players/prospects in return - a proven closer, starting pitching prospect, top flight OF prospect. We don't want to trade key starters or our top prospects for more mediocre relievers.

 
at 10:50 AM Blogger steve said...

One thing everyone needs to think about is all of these so called big name managers eveyone wants in cincinnati has been fired at least
once already so some one did not like the way they were doing there job.

 
at 11:18 AM Anonymous gmirones@yahoo.com said...

The sounds of the pieces coming together.

Do you hear that? Listen very carefully, what is it?

When was the last time you heard our shy right fielder speak, "We've got plenty of baseball left," said Ken Griffey Jr. "We may not make the playoffs, but we can still go make it tough for other people." For Jr. to say this much is tantamount to a challenge to the central division. Listen carefully, what is that sound. Again Jr. speaks, "Two people have to fall down for me to get a triple now." Is that the sound of humor coming from the club-house?
Listen carefully, did Mackanin say, ‘We're looking forward to facing the Cubs."
Pete Mackanin said, “You have to consistently prove yourself, or we’ll find someone else. It’s all about the team winning."
Those sounds you hear are the young Keppinger hitting in the clutch, young Hopper laying down a bunt, young Livingston fighting every inning, and young Burton challenging the inside corner of the plate, a future Hall of Famer banging into the wall and driving the ball all over the field, a young Bailey challenging high and tight at 95mph, and a young Guevara shouting,”Here I am”
These are the sounds of the future, maybe not this year but the seeds are in the ground, the pieces are fitting together and a reluctant, shy leader, is tentatively raising his fist saying, “Follow Me”

 
at 11:29 AM Anonymous gmirones@yahoo.com said...

The sounds of the pieces coming together.

Do you hear that? Listen very carefully, what is it?

When was the last time you heard our shy right fielder speak, "We've got plenty of baseball left," said Ken Griffey Jr. "We may not make the playoffs, but we can still go make it tough for other people." For Jr. to say this much is tantamount to a challenge to the central division. Listen carefully, what is that sound. Again Jr. speaks, "Two people have to fall down for me to get a triple now." Is that the sound of humor coming from the club-house?
Listen carefully, did Mackanin say, ‘We're looking forward to facing the Cubs."
Pete Mackanin said, “You have to consistently prove yourself, or we’ll find someone else. It’s all about the team winning."
Those sounds you hear are the young Keppinger hitting in the clutch, young Hopper laying down a bunt, young Livingston fighting every inning, and young Burton challenging the inside corner of the plate, a future Hall of Famer banging into the wall and driving the ball all over the field, a young Bailey challenging high and tight at 95mph, and a young Guevara shouting,”Here I am”
These are the sounds of the future, maybe not this year but the seeds are in the ground, the pieces are fitting together and a reluctant, shy leader, is tentatively raising his fist saying, “Follow Me”

 
at 12:22 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Anon 7:53

Before you start talking about perspective maybe you should grab some of your own. All of the arguments you made described mac, but if you look close enough they also described someone else as well. DAVE MILEY When you have an organization that has lost for 15 years why would you look in house for anything?????

 
at 12:27 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

at 7:55 AM Anonymous said...

Two of the Mets losses were very well played games. We just lost. Baseball is a 162 game season it happens. What bothers me is when we play like crap and lose that certainly was not the case in New York.
Truth is they double our payroll, all other things being equal they should kick our ass.

YOU MEAN LIKE FLORIDA DID WITH A 30 MILLION DOLLAR PAYROLL?

 
at 1:12 PM Anonymous Justin Fernandez said...

Mac arguably grades B+/A- and if the Reds finish at .600 or better for Mac's tenure this year, he deserves one more year if only because: WE NEED TO SPEND THE EXTRA MONEY ON A FREE AGENT PITCHER and not on an expensive big name manager!

Stanton, Saarloos, and a few other players simply do not belong on the Reds, even as water boys. They should have been released weeks ago (Coffey and Majewski are players I hope are let go ASAP too...over and over we hear how good Maj is throwing then he comes up and he is beyond lousy (and Lohse).

If at the All Star break next year, for whatever reason, the Reds have one of the worst three records in the Major Leagues, then it would be appropriate for a fan boycott (the GM and Owner would need to get out of town) at that time.

While Milwaukee is no "crap team" (HART, HARDY, BRAUN, FIELDER, HALL, WEEKS, etc is a fine offense and when Sheets comes back their pitching makes the Reds's staff look ridiculous) catching the CUBS this year seems to be the harder task by far; with Pujols heating up and Rolen escaping another DL trip, the Cards can't be counted out either...

The euphoria from taking 3 of 4 from the first place team is nice but this team still has to acquire or call up or get healthy 7-10 players before we're truly a playoff calibre team, so it would seem Cincinnati is several years away from the playoffs...but having a team that plays hard and smart is something we can at least enjoy as they occupy the "underdog" role.

Votto, Bruce, Bailey, and Hamilton represent the potential solutions to only about half of the Reds problems.

It's nice to see Keppinger and Valentin and Hatteberg step in and step up when the Reds needed them most.

The way Griffey and Dunn are playing lately, it's going to hurt if we lose them in a trade, especially for another couple of hack relievers!

I still don't believe Castellini has much of a clue about how to develop and produce a competitive team. When we make the playoffs, I'll then be a "believer."

If Castellini and Krivsky aren't careful, the Reds will get a whole lot worse before getting better. This has been a mismanaged season largely from the GM-side of things, although if Mac was Krivsky's sole idea, then he gets major praise for giving Mac the chance to manage, nevertheless, one more misstep by Krivsky and 5-10 more years of mediocrity are here!

 
at 2:17 PM Blogger PASStheTEA_B said...

It's not attitude. Better management leads to better performance which leads to better attitudes.

 
at 2:30 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

what is taking Kriv so long to make roster moves re: bullpen? is he gun-shy or is this speaking directly to how poor the pitching depth in AAA is? Coffee, Sarloos, and Stanton should go now!

 
at 5:34 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

THIS WILL BE MY LAST COMMENT..ITS TIME FOR FOOTBALL

BUT DO ALL OF THAT ARE SUGGESTING THIS TEAM IS CLOSE OR TURNING THINGS AROUND REALIZE THAT THIS HAS BEEN THE SAME BROKEN RECORD SINCE DAVE MILEY MANAGED.

I APPRECIATE YOUR LOVE AND ENTHUSIASM FOR THE REDS..BUT YOU ALL SIMPLY ARE WRONG

FOR THE LIFE OF ME I DONT SEE WHY ANYONE WOULD BE HESITANT TO GET TOP OF THE LINE MANAGEMENT IN HERE AND DUMP SOME SALARIES OF PLAYERS THAT SIMPLY ARE NOT PRODUCING ON A CONSISTENT BASIS

I REALIZE ITS AN EMOTIONAL ATTACHMENT, WE ALL LOVE GRIFFEY AND DUNN.. BUT THE WAY THIS TEAM IS BUILT SIMPLY HAS NOT WORKED

IF YOU THINK WE ARE CLOSE, WTCH THE MARLINS, TIGERS ANGELS, ETC, WE ARE NOT EVEN ON THE SAME PLANET

HAVE FUN GANG TIME TO MOVE ON TO FOOTBALL

 
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