Cool Papa Billy is what's burning up everybody's tongues this morning. Anthony Castrovince has the long story for MLB.com, and it says basically what you expect. Slyde is a bit ambivalent, saying that Robby coulda scored as easily as Billy. But hey. Shut up Slyde. Hamilton seemed equal parts excited and jumpy in interviews, like the Italian Greyhound he is. I loved this quote on how much he knew he was shaking up Maness: "I felt like when he [threw over three times], I had a chance on him. I felt like he was nervous. And if he's that nervous, I got a chance on him."
C Trent's got Cincinnati.com's version of the story. Mostly the same, but with a great Dustyism. "I didn't send Billy out there to paint."
They're not in headlines, but they're pretty awesome. Cingrani is gonna start on Thursday (though Dusty remains a bit reticent, and is keeping Greg Reynolds on a starting schedule just in case), and Cueto and Marshall both had successful ~30 pitch bullpen sessions and are proceeding along quite nicely. Cueto has modified his delivery a bit (check out the related video on that...I love Cueto's facial expressions. He's like Harpo Marx that throws gas), though I'm not yet sure precisely what they mean by that. C Trent thinks that Cueto could be in a Lincecum-y role in the playoffs, able to go 2-4 innings to keep the team in the game. If Cueto and Marshall are both ready for the playoffs, you have four lefties (Chapman, Marshall, Parra, Cingrani) and four righties (LeCure, Hoover, Simon, Cueto) to make a six- or seven-man bullpen. I have my personal druthers, but it'll be interesting to see how it shakes out. We've come a long way since Arthur Rhodes was the only lefty with a pulse.
JJ Hoover repping some WWE dude. Okay. Hoover seems to have the same emotional attachment/understanding of what's going on as I do.
Speaking of emotional understanding, Ol' Adam Dunn is mulling retirement. He's 34 and has one more year on his contract. He doesn't want to play if he's not having fun...understandable, after all the money he's made. I've always liked him more than most, so I hope he gets to go out on his own terms. Though it would be nice if he could get into the playoffs first.
My (Our?) Wladdy Balentein is quite literally the Babe Ruth of the Japanese League, putting up an SLG several standard deviations above everyone else. He would've been a fun guy to have around, but hey. I wish him all the best over thataways.
Speaking of data visualizations, Philip Roth the Blogger put up interactive examinations of MLB payrolls back to 1998. Fun stuff to click through. So do that.
Speaking of fun stuff, did you know that lightning strikes can mineralize when they hit the ground, creating veins of metallic lightning? How fucking awesome is that?
Speaking of fucking awesome, here's a photo essay of ruin porn of porn king Bob Guccione's failed Penthouse-themed luxury hotel off the coast of Croatia. Crazy stuff back in the day.
To get back on the Reds' side of things, C Trent noted that Green Diamond Gallery has an EBay account that you can buy some pretty great stuff from if you're into buying great stuff. If you're a memorabilia hound, check that out.
Johnny Bench singing with leggy women and chubby men in the background. Simply spellbinding. He actually has a heck of a voice, I gotta say.
This has been an exhausting Reposter, I admit. But I hope you saved yourself time to read this long, beautiful, interview with Sam LeCure. It's been mentioned a bit in the comments, but it deserves some limelight. He talks about God, not liking Texas, getting a job through Drew Stubbs, Aroldis Chapman's real name, being a babysitter (oh man, can you imagine Sam LeCure: babysitter?) and "After baseball, I'm looking more at the consumption of the beer rather than the distribution. It's just an incredibly, hilarious, interesting, read. I like Sammy a lot, and I hope you do, too.