The Cincinnati Reds will try to pick up the pieces tonight against the Oakland A's. Look, there's been a few bits of evidence that I've become privy to this morning, and most of them seem to suggest that, in fact, there was a series between the Reds and Cardinals this past weekend, and that it really didn't go so swell. Don't call me Luke Scott, but call me skeptical. Whatever. Be that as it may, the Reds get an Oakland team that has struggled to score runs of late for two games before another off day, and it's time the Reds turned the page. If you'll remember, the A's put a hurtin' on the Reds when the two teams faced off by the Bay earlier this season, so there are multiple layers of retribution at stake this evening. This will be the first time the A's have played in Great American Ball Park, too, and given A's starter Dan Straily's home/road and Lefty/Righty splits, I'm calling for doinkjams from both Votto and Bruce. And Choo, because what the hell.
Yet another nugget to bring your confidence back from the depths of the Ohio River, courtesy of Former Fearless Leader Slyde. Joel has been cast as sitting in a cubicle in front of two monitors full of spreadsheets and another running BBRef searches, but I'm beginning to think that's not the case. No, I think he's got all this stuff memorized already, and he's somewhere kicked back in a lounge chair, tweeting from one hand with a pina colada in the other.
Speaking of confidence (and people tweeting with one hand while holding a drink in the other), it appears that Devin Mesoraco has impressed the greatest catcher of all time. While C. Trent's piece talks a bit about Johnny Bench's tweet of admiration, it actually focuses a bit more on the maturation of the Reds' young backstop. I've detailed how I think there's a solid chance he can continue to be a force in the lineup this season, and I completely hope he continues on that path. In fact, he's more than welcome to do everything he can to accumulate 3.7 bWAR by the end of the season, since that would a) be superstar level unbelievable and b) leave him 0.1 bWAR short of Yasmani Grandal's 2 year total, rendering the avatar bet I had with 'creds a victory for yours truly.
While we're on the topic of talented, toolsy young Reds, Jeremy Warnemuende of mlb.com posted a nice piece on future cog Jesse Winker. Winker, as the Farmer's Only Bureau has kept you aware, has been one of the few offensive bright spots in a farm system largely devoid of both talent and success, and the fact that he's doing it age 19 should give you the tinglies. You should like him because he doesn't strike out a ton and walks a lot, but I'm banking on a P-Doc piece that likes him because he's got 70 RBI in 101 games.
Some tough news is also leaking out this morning, as it appears that former Red Dave Parker is fighting Parkinson's Disease. I've always been partial to the Cobra, and I hope he's got everything he needs to hit this disease with the same violent swings he used to hit baseballs.
Johnny Football, Alex Rodriguez, Johnny Manziel, A-Roid, Jeff Passan, Ken Rosenthal, Joe Schad, Johnny Football, Dan Wetzel, Buster Olney, Alex Rodriguez, John Morosi, and Mark Schlabach all just pitched in on the same story for the eleventythousandth time. Facepalm. Quit trying to turn the sports I love into TMZ, ya noodle-heads. Sensationalism at it's worst.