I think it's safe to say that Joe Randa has taken Cincinnati by storm. I was at the game last night and I'm not kidding when I say that you could feel the crowd falling in love with the guy.
Before he hit the grand slam I turned to my fiancee and said "He hits one out right here and he'll be a Red for the next five years". A minute later and he crushed the ball to dead center field. Good times. I really can't imagine what more a baseball player could do in the first week of the season to make a city love him. Maybe rescue a baby from a burning building, which Randa'll probably do later today.
Other observations from the game:
-- To the girl who sat in front of me: You're not hot enough to be flashing your thong every time you stand up. Some girls can pull that off and I certainly encourage it in certain cases but you? Not so much.
-- I saw my first ever fight at a baseball game, maybe ten - fifteen sections to the left, down the third baseline. Too far to see what it was all about, but close enough to see the general ruckus. Doesn't it always seem like there's some guy that stands up for about ten minutes until someone yells at him to sit down? I see this at just about every game I attend, and it almost always comes close - but never all the way - to violence. I guess last night it went all the way.
-- Eric Milton didn't look too bad, but he's going to be tough to watch this year. Fly ball pitcher for sure. He threw strikes last night though, and acquitted himself well for his first win as a Red.
-- I'm not a scout by any means, but I was really impressed with Matt Belisle. He was very composed and did a great job in his 1 and 2/3 IP.
-- It's a lot of fun watching Ken Griffey Jr. play baseball. I love the guy, and I've been sucked in once again into hoping against all odds that he can have a healthy season.
-- Willie Randolph - welcome to the NL buddy. I've read that he's got a bit of a grudge against the Reds, but if he can't even execute a double switch properly then I'm glad Cincinnati passed on the guy. Kudos to Dave Miley for being all over that one.
Awesome game to see in person. It's always nice to see a close game turn into a blowout in the late innings because then you get the best of both worlds all in one trip.