Joyce Berry Joe L Easter William E Foster Margaret Belcher John M Cheatham Ronnie Simpson Under new management county hospital is thriving against all odds Historic fairground gazebo demolished One year later, still no arrests in Rhoden family murders There will be trouble in River City! Monna L Fitzgerald Jesse Carrington Janice M Sowards Rhoden family members make plea for tips in Pike Co murders of loved ones Quilting – the art that’s no longer just for Grandma Young is Adams County recipient of Franklin B. Walter All-Scholastic Award Wenstrup recognized as Community Health Advocate Ready, set, go! 25th annual Egg Hunt draws hundreds Applicants needed for Adams County Fair Queen Humane Society encourages responsible animal ownership ACCS holds annual Science Fair Peebles Elementary names March Students of the Month Pierce fires perfect game as Peebles blanks West Union Hunters preparing for 2017 Wild Turkey Season Lady Hounds fall 12-3 at Lynchburg Dragons lose early lead, drop SHAC match up with Fayetteville, 13-6 Senior Profile: Isaiah Anderson Devils roll to big SHAC win at Ripley Despite soggy night, WUHS hosts annual Invitational Meet Celebrities for a night George F Carr Jr Teresa S Hoskins Mary B McClure Richard B Collins Randall D Fetters Former Manchester officer indicted on five counts WUHS student wins state Beta Club Secretary’s seat OVCTC students part of state competition S.R. 73 closed for culvert replacement Peebles Lions Club holds first Easter Egg Hunt Weyrich graduates with honors from Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics North Adams Elementary releases Honor Roll for Third grading Period Scholarships available from Jefferson Alumni Olympic athlete speaks at April 6 SAAM event Venture Hawks end their basketball season with a victory at WUHS Devils baseball sweeps doubleheader from Northwest Greyhounds gain SHAC split, split twinbill with East England signs with Rio Grande golf Pierce fans 16, Lady Indians blank Eastern Brown 4-0 Maybe somebody on the river does have a plan Senior Profile: Ryan Dryden Enjoying the view Still a time for celebration Carl R Brown Lena R Staggs Adams County Crews Schedule Culvert Replacement Projects Merlan Shoemaker Dwayne E Thompson Help is on the line! West Union Elementary honors February Students of the Month WUHS hosts 2017 All-County Arts and Music Festival Ohio Brush Creek Canoe/Kayak Access Grand Opening set for April 20 Kasich cracks down on opiate-based prescriptions West Union High School students have successful trip to State Beta Convention North Adams Beta Club excels at State Convention ACRMC hosts annual Health Fair Robert H Bushman Senior Profile: Skylar Newman Nine-run inning leads Lady Hounds to run rule win over West Union WUHS foursome breaks school record First county baseball battle goes to the Greyhounds On the road, Lady Indians pick up two more SHAC victories Senior Profile: Christa Williams One more ‘shining moment’ for SHAC seniors at C103 All-Star Game Esie M Chandler Phyllis Adkins Former Manchester police deputy faces Grand Jury Indictments Cornell tosses no-hitter, Fenton goes deep, Dragons open season with 11-0 SHAC win over Whiteoak New Verizon store opening in West Union Stephen R Palmer Dual culvert replacements for SR 73 Deana P Grooms Tim Phipps Marcella Walker Alvin R Mitchum Senior Profile: Chase Darnell SHAC hoopsters shine at District 14 All-Star Game Greyhounds run rule St. Pat, 15-0 Indians drop SHAC opener West Union hosts early JH Track Meet North Adams student wins state Beta Club President’s seat Anna B Copas Charles A Nelson Nation’s #1 movie comes to stage Artectis hosts grand opening Waiting for the ax to fall, who’s to blame? WU Seniors going to State Sci. Fair Peebles Elem. releases Honor Roll Finding the strength to endure They fought for us

Hang on, help is on the way

Photo by Mark Carpenter.
Photo by Mark Carpenter.

By Mark Carpenter –

I walked through a lonely place last Saturday evening. I walked through a place that might get a whole lot lonelier before the summer is over. I walked through the ticket offices of the Cincinnati Reds. Of course, I am exaggerating because it was in the middle of a game so there weren’t workers at their desks or phones ringing off the hook, but if the fortunes of the home team don’t change soon, those phones may never ring.

We all knew the 2016 season was going to be a struggle for the Reds, we just didn’t realize how much of a struggle and the season is just 45 games old. Unfortunately, the Reds have only won 15 of those games and as I write this very early on a Tuesday morning, their losing streak stands at eight, with honestly, no relief in sight.

No relief in sight might be an accurate phrase to describe what has happened through 45 games as it has already been well documents how atrocious the Reds bullpen work has been. Even if a Reds starter produced a quality start, and those have been few and far between, the bullpen took over and usually allowed a couple of home runs, blew a lead, and put another notch in the “L” column. Now the “pen” has become a revolving door, a few in, a few out, and maybe we will find someone who can put out a fire. The last three days, however, have produced a glimmer of pitching hope, with the bullpen throwing seven shutout innings in the final two games of the Seattle series and then Brandon Finnegan turning in a complete game effort on Monday night in LA, of course in a losing effort.

That brings us to another point, the team’s offense has not exactly knocked the cover off the ball. Take away Zach Cozart and the team has no .300 hitters and their best hitter, Mr. Votto, is hitting .203 and it’s almost June. Now, no one expects Votto to be hitting near the Mendoza line all season, but what if it just never comes around for him? The second highest batting average among the regulars belongs to Jay Bruce and that’s just .264. No offense to Don Long and Tony Jaramillo (household names there), but it’s time to bring in Eric Davis as the hitting coach. And while they are at it, maybe Ted Power or Mario Soto as the pitching coach. Again, no offense to Mark Riggins. Who? Again, not exactly a household name.

I don’t like seeing anyone lose their jobs and I have no clue what goes on with hitting and pitching coaches in the major leagues, so they get the benefit of the doubt from me, but I’ve got to think that there are a number of coaches on a pretty short string. But what about manager Bryan Price? There’s the fellow I truly feel sympathy for. As has been said over and over again, he is only playing with the cards he has been dealt (which he almost accidentally said in a press conference last week). Safe to say Price is not carrying around a Royal Flush or four aces. As with every coach or manager in professional sports, there have been questionable decisions, but in Price’s case, it’s usually a matter of “what other options do I have?”

Managers and coaches come and go quite often in the professional ranks and they are all remembered for something and right now Price will go down in Reds’ annals as the manager of some really bad teams, unfair to him of course. It’s hard to compete when you’re using donkeys and everyone else has thoroughbreds.

On Opening Day, I had to go buy a program just to identify most of the players on the roster of the Phillies. Watching them that day, I thought they were just one horrible baseball team, maybe someone who would be worse than the Reds, but check out the no-name Phils now. 25-20 record, just two games out of first place in the NL East. What’s the difference? Not hard to find-pitching. A closer with 16 saves and a starting rotation with 16 wins. Take heed though, Reds fans. Right now the Braves and Twins are worse, but nobody, including myself, wants to be writing at any time during the season about how the Reds compare with the worst teams in the game.

If you believe the lyrics of the Little River Band, “hang on, help is on the way.” The Reds’ AA team in Pensacola looks to be loaded, especially on the pitching staff, but as you are well aware, things seem to happen to young pitchers on their way to the show, or in Reds terminology, “the land of the strained oblique.” The major league draft is coming up in June and the Reds have three of the first 50 picks and not a real good track record in recent drafts. Word is that they have their eyes on a center fielder. How many center fielders does a system need?

Bobbleheads. giveaways, and special ticket pricing will keep people in the stands for most of the season, but even promotions can’t put a winner on the field. The rebuild will be ugly and frustrating (it already is) and the end is nowhere in sight but Reds fans have to trust that the team does have some kind of vision for the future. Easier said than done.

Meanwhile, I will keep hanging on to Captain America and the boys at Citi Field. LGM!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© The People's Defender - All rights reserved