October 3, 2005
Prior to the 2005 campaign it was clear that Dan O'Brien was hoping for something historic. However, he certainly wasn't hoping for the longest losing streak in baseball history, nor was he hoping to be the GM of the first MLB franchise to lose 152 games.
The Reds lost to the St. Louis Cardinals 5-4 yesterday, despite holding a 5-0 lead entering the bottom of the ninth. Yadier Molina hit a grand slam off of Danny Graves, who had come in to relieve David Weathers. John Mabry then hit a solo shot to end the game. Weathers had loaded the bases with three straight walks to start off the inning.
The loss was the Reds 142nd in a row, easily besting the previous record held by the 1899 Cleveland franchise who lost 24 in a row.
The defeat was also eerily reminiscent of the sixth loss in the streak, when Graves and Weather combined to blow a six run lead, also in the ninth inning.
Aaron Harang started for the Reds, his 89th start of the season. Harang, along with Eric Milton, have been in a two man rotation since June 17th. Other Cincinnati starters suffered season ending injuries, but Dan O'Brien, as we all remember, never promoted anyone to take their place. Due to O'Brien's cautious nature, the Reds have played with a 19 man roster since Ken Griffey Jr. went down for the season right before the All-Star break. Harang pitched seven strong innings and said after the game that while he "feels fine", he'll probably take a few weeks off before beginning his offseason conditioning program.
Wily Mo Pena pinch hit in the top of the eighth and hit his 37th home run, despite only notching 204 at bats this season. Felipe Lopez received the start on the day, his 17th of the year.
Danny Graves had angry words for Reds fans, despite the game's St. Louis location:
Most of this season has been the fault of the fans. We probably could have won upwards of 40 games if our fans had simply supported us. I've really come to dislike Cincinnati because of all the emphasis on winning. We try our hardest, you know? I can't wait to play in a city where people care about the important things in life more than they care about baseball.
Graves, a free agent, is rumored to be looking at Tampa Bay as a possible destination.
Dan O'Brien will be meeting with his staff today to review the season and to begin preparing for the offseason. A front office official was overheard saying that no moves are forthcoming and that the meeting is "mostly just about closing up 2005 business".