How the west was won
5 and 1, to be specific. The Reds finished their final western road trip of the regular season with a flourish, scoring five runs late yesterday to win the series in Houston. With a St. Louis loss to Washington, the Reds stretched their divisional lead to 9.5 games. They remain in a virtual tie with the Nationals for the top seed in the league.
Next on tap is Philly
Johnny Cueto goes for his 18th win to pad his CYA lead. The Phillies will throw out Tyler Cloyd, who's making his second career start. The Reds wrap up the week by hosting the Astros, in town for their final time as a National League team.
In a surprise move, the Reds have called up Terrific Tony
Tony Cingrani started the year in Bakersfield but will finish it in Cincinnati. The 6' 4" lefty has defied expectations since the Reds drafted him last year. It'll be interesting to see how Tony's fastball fares against major league hitters, as well as how the Reds use the former college closer.
Little helmet, big mustache
SuperFan Tony Nauman has sported a handlebar mustache and miniature batting helmet at Reds games this season, though there's no confirmation that he gets to GABP via a tiny bicycle. With the way the team has played, he sees no reason to change his habits, and I agree. If it ain't broke, Tony.
Dayn Perry trolls Jim Bowden with aplomb
You ever wonder what's rattling around in the mind of Jim Bowden? Or whether all of his thinking occurs below the belt? This may answer your questions. Adding further spice to the post, Perry later said that Bowden direct tweeted him "class." Stay above the fray, Jimbo!
- Billy Hamilton and the Century Club
Finding a comp for Billy Quix isn't easy, so Fangraphs looks back at the eight players who've swiped 100+ bags in a season to see where Billy's talents may lead him. I'd certainly be pleased with Vince Coleman with plus defense at CF. Also, remember that Nike poster of Eric Davis sliding? The ESPN mag has a similar spread of Hamilton.
- You may have heard about the Reds
MaizeMaze in Lebanon
The 12-acre corn field depicts Mr. Redlegs and the wishbone "C," among other Reds designs. A portion of the ticket proceeds go to the Reds Community Fund, so good on maze owner Bill Irons for getting into the spirit. I'm told the first family to make it through the maze, which opened this weekend, was Slyde's merry band. Congrats, Joel!
- If you've been wondering about the electronic whereabouts of Joe Posnanski's writing,
You can find it at Sports on Earth. From my browsing, it appears to be Grantland for the grownup table. Joe's got a few pieces up already, but in the afterglow of the Olympics I'm linking a good read about the US-Soviet gold medal basketball contest in '72. The American team recently held a reunion in Georgetown, Ky., and no they're not bitter I mean why would you even ask?? "You can take your silver medal and shove it," said Center Tom Burleson.
- Astros acquire BPro writer and prospect maven
If you follow prospects at all, you're familiar with Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus. Goldstein has bid farewell to the proverbial basement and is heading down to Houston, where he'll be the Director of Pro Scouting or something like that. His spunky podcasts with Jason Parks will be missed.
- Fangraphs has introduced its latest pitching metric - Handsome-Independent Pitching
Reds pitchers stands atop the National League in run prevention after adjusting for park effects. That's pretty important, but the fellas (?) over at NotGraphs have deemed the staff deficient in its new beefcake quotient. Homer Bailey just cut a switch and set off a lookin'.