A few Reds weekend thoughts for your breakfast today, but first, I had a thought.

“We’re all told when we can no longer play the game. Some of us when we’re 18, some of us when we’re 40, but we’re all told.”

That quote, from a scout talking to Billy Beane in Moneyball, was referring to baseball. After Friday, though, I feel like he could be talking about riding roller coasters. (Which reminds me of Mary Beth’s latest post)

Some folks, at a young age, decide that keeping their feet on the ground is preferable, and never dabble (and there’s nothing wrong with that). Other folks, like myself, love that feeling when you’re between your seat and your restraint, on the way down that first hill with our hands in the air, and want to ride every single one of them. Despite my own denial of it, even that has a shelf-life, though, and I hit mine after The Flight of Fear, Friday.

 I climbed out of my seat, at the back of the train, feeling confused. I wasn’t really sure if I was all there, because I almost felt like what I think a chocolate malt does when they’re mixing it, but I was sure I needed to sit down and have a snack. Once I paid six bucks for a bag of chips and a few drops of queso, I sat at a picnic table and silently sulked about having become old enough that a roller coaster had caused me to sit down and recover. This whole passage of time thing and “growing up” ain’t all it’s cracked up to be…

Now then, I am not sure how I meant to tie that in to today’s stuff about our Redlegs, but I’ve been told that acceptance is the first step in grieving…or something…whatever, let’s talk the Reds weekend.


Last Chance

Phillip Ervin and Jose Peraza are fighting for their chance to remain big parts of the Reds, moving forward. This may seem a little unfair, and I think it is, but with the front office making a trade to officially announce the end to the rebuild, and then dealing Scooter Gennett for a PTBNL, they’ve also drawn a line in the sand with a message of “If you cannot help us win, we’re moving on.” With Ervin and Peraza, they’ve got two months to show they can stay, and it starts with this Reds weekend in Atlanta.

A team looking to make the playoffs, and make a deep playoff run, cannot have multiple spots in their everyday eight that are guys trying to prove they belong. You may, or may not agree, that both of these guys have been giving the opportunities, over the last two season, to do just that and here we are still wondering if they can be everyday contributors.

To that end, Ervin has had a nice year, so far. His slash line is awesome at .358/.418/.580 and he’s accumulated 1.4 Wins Above Replacement in 88 at-bats. That’s just it, though. His success has come in a small sample size. Last season, in a much larger number of at-bats (218), he recorded a much different slash-line of .252/.324/.404. Reports are that he’s benefitted from some swing adjustments, and a platoon of Ervin and Jesse Winker could equal a very fruitful amount of production, but with an offseason coming up where the front office needs to improve a large amount of the lineup, Ervin will need to continue to produce consistently to show he can stick it.

Same goes for Peraza. As a buddy of mine reminded me, Peraza has essentially been haded starting gigs for second base or shortstop each of the last two seasons only to see himself supplanted by a guy who the Reds acquired on a dime (Gennett, Jose Iglesias). He’s, once again, come on in this second half of the season, with an OPS of .829 and a .326 average, but that is still a small sample. In the first half, he hit .222 in 225 ABs. Maybe the the truth lies somewhere between those numbers, but he has to show it consistently (there’s an echo in here). The 2020 Reds cannot start a guy who hits under .210 until June.


There’s six fights…I mean games…left in the year between these two, and I just wanted to take a moment to point out a tweet from Redleg Nation’s own, Nick Kirby, that you may, or may not, have seen:

That’s brilliant.

Trevor Bauer’s Reds debut

This is a big Reds weekend with him making his debut. I won’t go into a lot of detail here as I will be writing a lot about Bauer, today. I do want to say this, though, as I will not broach this part of the Bauer story again. There are those who say they will not root for him or they do not like him. I am not trying to play defense for him, as he neither needs it or asked me to, but I do not mind pulling for Bauer. My take on the matter is this: if I can find it in my fan heart to root for Joe Mixon, I can root for Trevor Bauer. With that said, I hope he helps us win a division title and maybe even hang a pennant.

The Punisher

He’s 0-for-6 since the call-up, and Saturday’s lineup has not been released at time of writing, but I am saying Aristides Aquino gets hit first Major League home run, this weekend. Predicting who will hit a home run is sometimes a bit silly, but I just have this feeling. Now. I’m not saying he will hit it off Dallas Keuchel, but that would be even more awesome if he did. All of the people clamoring for Keuchel, even after the season started and we saw the quality of our rotation, it would be nice to see the Reds light him up on Saturday. Aquino hitting a dinger off him would be the icing on the cake that is the Reds weekend.