The dinger party thrown by the Cincinnati Reds and Pittsburgh Pirates got a bit out of hand last night, and the fun police were called in to break things up, as Mark Sheldon sort of said for Reds.com. The two teams tied a record for most HR hit through 6 innings of a game, and sit just two dingers short of the all-time MLB record for most in a single game. Someone obviously never got around to explaining what a "rally killer" was to the Pirates, as each of the six they hit were solo shots, and each and every one of them either tied the game or gave the Pirates the lead. Wacky, wacky baseball it was, and it's set to resume today at approximately 5:30 PM EST. Hopefully the Bloodmoon won't have such a crazy pull on today's outcomes. Also, it will be interesting to see if J.J. Hoover returns to pitch the Top of the 7th for the Reds, since he's got a day's rest and has already entered the game.
April 15th marks the 67th anniversary of the day Jackie Robinson played his first game in Major League Baseball, and Jackie Robinson Day will be celebrated in each ballpark hosting a game today. Though known by most as a 2B, Robinson actually played 1B for the Brooklyn Dodgers in his first game (as he did in all 151 games in which he played in 1947), and it's remarkable the level of career accomplishments he managed to accrue despite not playing his first MLB game until he was 28. His 10 seasons in baseball saw him win an MVP, a batting title, lead the league in OBP once, steals twice, and accumulate a sparkling 61.5 bWAR before retiring in 1958. At the time of this post, it was still unknown as to whether the Reds would each wear number 42 for the conclusion of last night's game against the Pirates, though I'm assuming they'll finish up Game 1 in their usual numbers before each donning Jackie's number for the regularly scheduled game.
If you haven't had a chance to watch Joey Votto's interview with MLB Network, you need to check it out. Votto sat down with Sam Ryan to discuss a litany of things, specifically the impact that the loss of his father had on him and how he's managed to cope since his passing in 2008. It's a remarkably frank interview that shows not just how introspective the Reds' 1B is, but also how human and vulnerable he is (and has been), and it's another reminder of how truly lucky we, as Reds fans, are to have him to watch. Seeing Votto speak about losing his father is important on several fronts, the foremost being that it's a sign that Joey has reached a stage in his life where he's more capable of managing the grief than he was when depression had him in its throes just a few years ago; also, it's obvious that it has helped spur on The Joey Votto Foundation, which will hopefully help young people in Cincinnati manage similar situations with the kind of support they need.
Grant Brisbee loves young pitchers, and he hates the Reds. Bris breezed through the best pitchers in baseball - in terms of value - for the second consecutive year, and in the wake of Matt Moore's recent need for Tommy John surgery, it's no surprise that he's erring in the side of young, cheap stars in the stead of those more established aces who carry contracts the size of GDPs. He's probably right. Probably.