As you follow the Cardinals-Angels game out in Anaheim tonight, keep in mind that Joe Blanton – the Angels’ pitcher – almost came to the Reds in what would have been one of the biggest disasters in the history of the franchise.

Before the 2008 season, rumors had Blanton coming to the Reds for Joey Votto plus either Homer Bailey or Johnny Cueto.

Enquirer columnist Paul Daugherty offered his opinion back then that he would do the trade “in a second” in part because “Blanton is a proven winner.”

Blanton was 5-12 for the Oakland A’s the following season. He’s never had an ERA below 4 and his ERA in all the years since then approaches 5.00. Blanton, the proven winner, and Bailey have each had 43 wins since then. Johnny Cueto has won 64 games.

And the other guy the Reds would have given up in that trade has done OK, too.

Imagine if the Reds had followed through with it …

But tonight, we’re all Joe Blanton fans!