Bryan Price sat down with Bob Nightengale of the USA Today for a brief and irritating interview. Price doubled down yet again (tripled down?) on the message of his April profane rant, if still regretting the language he used. He acknowledged that the media members are not Reds employees, which is a relief to know he understands that, because it wasn’t clear that he did. However, he still doesn’t seem to understand the role of the media and his relationship with it. He states that he and the media "almost compete against each other at times" and expresses a desire to "make it work where everyone was a winner." As Craig Calcaterra points out, that displays a continued confusion about what the media’s actual job is, and indicates that Price may be "focusing too much on crap that shouldn’t matter to [him]." The saga continues.
Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports looks at Todd Frazier’s outstanding season so far and the possibility of the Reds signing him long term. Rosenthal believes that a deal with Frazier would be worth more than Kyle Seager’s $100 million deal with the Mariners, but with Johnny Cueto and Mike Leake coming off the books this year, and the possibility of Aroldis Chapman and Jay Bruce leaving via trade, the Reds might be able to swing it, even with the Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips and Homer Bailey contracts. Rosenthal also mentions this interesting little nugget:
In addition, the Reds soon are expected to sign a new long-term contract with FOX Sports Ohio that could more than double the $30 million per season that they reportedly earn in their current deal.
Good to know. It would be nice to know how soon is "soon," though.
Even though he won't be pitching this weekend, Mat Latos is back in town for the first time since his trade to the Marlins, and more importantly, for the first time since his comments about his time with the Reds back in the spring. C. Trent Rosecrans spoke with Latos before last night's game, and he had this to say:
I said some stuff that was out of line and was under the assumption that it wasn't going on the record. I won't make excuses. There's some stuff I said that really should not have come out of my mouth. You just take it in stride, do what you've got to do.
The "wasn't going on the record" bit kind of makes it sound like he is making excuses, but whatever. Bygones.
Cory Collins of the Sporting News spoke with Jay Bruce about his work with the Special Olympics, and especially about his relationship with his sister, Kellan. Bruce cites Kellan – who has special needs – as a grounding force in his life, and as someone who helps him maintain perspective in a tough business. It’s a really great story. Incidentally, Bruce, who is an honorary member of the Advisory Board of Special Olympics Hamilton County, will be participating in a Special Olympics Unified ProCamp in Cincinnati today.
One of the more interesting sub-plots around baseball this year has been the unusual number of high-profile prospects getting their first taste of big league ball. There have been so many of these that Cliff Corcoran of SI decided to create a new top 10 prospect list, eliminating those who have already cracked the majors. And lo and behold, our own Robert Stephenson makes the list at number eight, despite his bouts of wildness this season.
Back at the Sporting News again, Ryan Fagan talked to former pitcher and MLB Network analyst Bob Plesac about the level of parity that currently exists in MLB.. Despite the fact that Plesac lists the Reds as one of only five teams that are pretty much out of it at this point in the season (Thanks for the reminder, Bob), Plesac finds parity to be a good thing, despite laments from some that baseball currently lacks a truly "great" team.
Finally, MLB’s rookie commissioner Rob Manfred has announced a new initiative called Play Ball, which is designed to encourage more people, especially children, to play baseball, thus ensuring the next generation of fans and paying customers. As of now, the campaign consists of a website that helps people find local leagues, and an app that helps youth baseball coaches in a variety of ways. Manfred states that he wants to change the image baseball has as a "country club" sport, which is a very worthy goal.