(They’ve build a ballpark big enough to contain Ronny Cedeno. But not in Cincinnati)
Your weary correspondent made his first ever vist to the Great American Ballpark today, at least partially inspired by Dave Schied’s illumninating account of Skyline Chili Dogs and male fans cuckolded by Bronson Arroyo.
My afternoon was highlighted by :
a) noting that at least a 1/3rd of those in attendence were Reds fans. Much like the vibe at Camden Yards when the Red Sox are in town (or to a lesser extent, CBP when the Mets roll in), what had been touted as a sea of partisan Red had a decidedly Blue flavor.
b) Long-range heckling is for dopes. The guy in front of me laying into Juan Pierre would be slightly more courageous if there was even a chance in hell the Cubs’ center-fielder could hear him. “An on-base-percentage of .278! I had to look it up! You’ve gotta be kidding…go back to Florida!”
Not that Pierre isn’t a stiff, but even if he could “go back to Florida” (and I don’t believe he is a native of the sunshine state any more than Jeremi Gonzalez has roots in the Norfolk, VA area), I doubt it would be that easy. Then again, maybe I am being too cynical. Perhaps one phone call to Larry Beinfest would do the trick…”these fans in the Central Division, they’re too hard on me, especially that guy in the upper deck down the right field line in Cincinnati…please take me back.”
c) In the space of 4 pitches (single, HR, single) David Weathers turned a 4-2 game into a 6-2 contest (and counting)…and promptly disappeared. The Reds radio crew of Marty Brennaman and Steve Stewart were mystified, wondering what sort of physical ailment Weathers had acquired in the space of his 90 seconds on the mound.
Perhaps Chris Hammond will have a medical excuse, too (and I’m doing my best to resist that “second opinion” line about his predecessor.)
d) the duo of Brennaman and Stewart’s tremendous “gangsta or gangster?” trivia segment.
Joe Nuxhall is out of the hospital and was greeting his adoring public last night. There’s no truth to the rumor he’ll be taking Weathers’ spot on the roster tomorrow.