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Shaknb8k
02-06-2006, 10:39 PM
When you say Cincinnati Reds most people think of a baseball team that is based upon winning. The older generation then might think of the days of Robinson, Kluszewski, and Nuxhall as well as all the other things I will mention. The next generation will probably think about the Big Red Machine with Pete, Tony, Johnny, Concepcion, and Morgan only to list a few. As soon as they think of the Big Red Machine they think of utter dominance of a decade of baseball. The next generation thinks about the 1990 team of Rijo, Larkin, Dibble and Browning that defied all odds. They defeated the reigning world champions when no one gave them a chance. This group of people make up probably close to 99% of the Reds fan base. For that 99% of the fans the words Cincinnati Reds are synonyms for winning baseball. I want to inform you about how that small 1% remembers the Cincinnati Reds.

I am part of a new generation of fans that when I think of Cincinnati Reds and donít hardly think about winning. I would have to think that I am a rare breed of Reds fan because of this. My grandpa was a Reds fan, my dad is a Reds fan so thats how I became a Reds fan. I am 20 years old meaning in just the past few years I have became a REAL diehard fan that my grandpa and dad are. I now live and breathe Cincinnati Reds Baseball. It wasnt till a few years ago that I became the type of fan that many of you are. Ive always been a fan but now I guess I'm a fanatic.

I was born 1985 and I can hardly remember the 1990 World Series that was the last great Cincinnati Reds moment. I was 5 years old and all I remember of that was that they won and Chris Sabo wore these big olí goggles. I donít remember one pitch of the entire series. Most people my age are not going to follow a team that doesnít win. Thatís just how they are. But I love the Reds. Win or lose, I will always be a Reds fan no matter what part of the country I end up in. So that is why I believe I am part of a very small group of people who are my age.

From the day I was born, the Reds are 1673-1655 through 21 seasons. That is a winning percentage of .503 and only 18 games above .500. I have lived through 10 winning seasons and 10 losing seasons (1 .500 season). The Reds have been to the playoffs only 2 times and won the World Series a mere 1 time. I have lived through 10 managers. A better way of putting that is that the Reds have averaged a different manager a little over every 2 seasons since I was born. That hardly sounds like the same team that many Reds fans from the other generations think of. If I want to see the Reds dominate I have to read a book or article or watch a clip. I canít just sit down and remember the winning times because they donít exists since I have been alive. There have been single seasons that were pretty good but no GREAT season or even a streak of good seasons. The great Reds moments I think of is Larkin winning the MVP and the Reds trading for the best player in baseball at the time, Ken Griffey Jr. I donít think of winning times.

Usually wisdom comes from old men talking to young lads. But I would like to reverse the roles a little bit. I would like to tell the generations before me not to take those winning years for granite. I am not going to lie; I am flat out jealous of the people who can talk about the days when the Cincinnati Reds were at the top. I do feel cheated in a way when compared to other generations of Reds fans. But for some it is easy to complain a lot about the Reds new losing ways when you have seen the other side. But I havenít seen that side. The losing way or the average way is all I know from the Reds.

You might think this is a pretty deep for a post on a message board and your probably right. But I really love the Reds and I am looking forward to this season and what seems to be a small step in the right direction with this ownership. But what I wanted to do with this post is show that the Reds arenít the same to everyone. All I have to be proud about is the history and nothing from my lifetime. But years down the road when this ship is turned around and my generation can talk to the past generations about winning there is one thing that my generation wont ever be questioned aboutÖand that is Loyalty.

wheels
02-06-2006, 11:14 PM
Great post, man.

RFS62
02-06-2006, 11:37 PM
That was wonderful.

You may not know it, but you are a shining example of the very best of Reds fans since their inception.

You hear stories of the Big Red Machine and have vague memories of the 1990 team, but what you've experienced is exactly what most Reds fans since 1869 have also experienced.

The fact that you love them regardless is to your credit. It's what we all do.

It's no great trick to love a team like the '75 or '76 Reds. To love them when they test your spirit, that's the mark of a fan.

That was a beautiful and profound post. I really look forward to more from you.

You just made a fan of me.

KronoRed
02-06-2006, 11:45 PM
Excellent post :clap:

vaticanplum
02-07-2006, 12:08 AM
I agree, that was really great. Thank you for taking the time to write that.

You, to me, represent a very interesting demographic of baseball fans. You're not that much younger than I am, but the baseball world you have seen is very different, and not just because of the Reds. You were born in 85, so you were about ten years old when the striked happened. Adults, or even teenagers, have more experience weathering that kind of disappointing wake-up call in the world, but that kind of thing can potentially destroy a ten-year-old (or at least his interest in baseball). Add to this the fact that your team was cut out of the playoffs because of it, the first time you might have really cared about such a thing.

But then there was 98, the greatest year of baseball in my lifetime. There were all the things you talked about -- Larkin, Griffey, and other things too, Dunn, whatever player or game may mean something to you -- if you have such potential for loyalty, like you do, this is what baseball will do to you. No matter how crappy things seem, it will always drop a line to bring you back, even if that line can't compare to, say, the Big Red Machine in your father's eyes. It's your line, it's your team.

Most of the people on this board, and, for that matter, all of the people who write about baseball in the media and commentate about baseball and reminisce about baseball at this point are still even a quarter of a generation ahead of you, which makes a big difference sometimes. They will often say that the sport is not what it used to be. What they're talking about, I think, is the organization of baseball. There are things that are normal to you that all of the old folks will sniff at -- the salaries and the pampering and the steroids and many other things that are certainly worth disdain. People have a right to worship the Big Red Machine. It was one of the greatest teams in history and I'm sorry I missed it too.

But I don't like it when people mistake the organization of baseball for the game. The organization has changed. The game, fundamentally, has not. It is still a really, really, really great game. You love the same game that your father and grandad did, and the really wonderful part about baseball is that you love the same team too. The Reds you love carry around all the good parts and bad parts of the Reds they loved. But now you love the game, so the team belongs to you as much as it did to them. In fact, at some point, it gets turned over to you, and this team will be good someday, and you will be there for it, and those triumphs will be belong to you. And to your dad and grandad too, in a different way.

I know this is long and I kind of hesitate to post it because I think the original post stands all on its own. This is just something I feel very strongly about -- this is the heart of baseball, I think.

Caseyfan21
02-07-2006, 12:29 AM
I am also 20 and I feel as though I wrote that post myself. You did an excellent job of just taking a lot of the words out of my mouth and I wish I could write them down that well.

When I hear the Reds, the first thing that comes to mind is the tradition and then after that it's usually the embarrassment of the last decade. I was also born in 1985. I attended my first game on Aug 9, 1992 (Reds vs. Giants) with my dad and grandpa. In 1992 I also started collecting baseball cards and now I have over 35,000. I suppose I reall became a diehard fan in 1993 or so when I finally got to a couple more games and really collected more cards. The strike hit in 1994 and I was devastated but unlike older fans, I didn't need to be called back to the game, I was there waiting.

I think 1995 was probably my second favorite season to be a Reds fan. The Reds were unbelievable that year and surprisingly I can still remember a lot of it being only 10 at the time. I remember Bret Boone hitting a homer to take down the Cubs in the 11th at a game I went to early in the year. I remember being so devastated when my favorite pitcher Jose Rijo went down. I also remember the winning and how good it felt to have the MVP at shortstop.

The years of 1996-1997 were dull and boring. I really have no major memories. I think I became more of a baseball fan and less of a Reds fan. There was Larkin going for 30/30 but not much else. 1998 was one of my favorite years to be a baseball fan. The homerun chase captivated me and I think I still have all of the newspaper clipping from the McGwire/Sosa race down in my basement.

My favorite year to be a Reds fan was 1999. That team was amazing and I was finally to the age where I could follow it, relate to the game, and appreciate the way that team played it. I was in middle school then and I can remember how excited I was to be able to stay up late for the one game playoff. It was heartbreaking in the end but a great ride while it lasted. The next best Reds memory I have was seeing Jr. come to town in 2000. I still remember how awesome it felt to wear that red #30 jersey to school the first day after spring break that year.

Since 2001, I have really fallen out of touch with the Reds and baseball. I have followed the game passionately for the first half of every year but by August I am glad for college football season to finally roll around. I rarely have been significantly interested in any of the post season games. The funny thing is I have gotten my driver's license and have been going to more games than ever. My junior and senior years in high school I went to 15-20 games each year, almost all walkup $5 tickets with friends. I have really stopped collecting cards in favor of just collecting autographs.

This past year has been even more of the same. I am in Columbus now. I am excited as ever for baseball season to start and especially excited for the new ownership. I will probably be passionate about the team at least for the first half of the season but I think I will again fall into the midseason slump if the Reds aren't in contention. I just can't justify spending what little money I have to go down to a game in August when I could use for a Buckeyes game in September. This year was the first year ever that I went to more games in other stadiums than in Cincinnati. I went to Clippers games, a Pirates games, several Indians games in September/Oct, and a few Dragons games. I went to 6 Reds games last year and 3 were on free tickets. It's not that I can blame going to school on it as I usually went to most of my games in the summer months. I just don't have the tradition aspect to fall back on in my support of the Reds. I see the here and now and personally the here and now doesn't deserve money from me. Don't get me wrong, I still watch a lot of games but why pay when I can tune in at home and just turn the TV off after.

I guess this turned out to be more of a vent but I agree with Shak. I don't recall the old glory days - I hear stories from my dad and read books, but they are little more than fictional tales. The Reds baseball I know is a team that starts out in contention but by the all star game they are fighting in the cellar. I really hope the new ownership brings winning baseball back. I think the next couple years are a real make or break time for me in my life with the Reds. I will always be a baseball fan and the Reds will always be my favorite team. If the Reds don't get better I think I will continue to go to games but they will more and more be roadtrips with college friends to see other teams and other parks.

shredda2000
02-07-2006, 12:51 AM
Great post.

I am 38 years old and can remember the '75, '76 & '90 seasons fairly well. I also remember the lean years as well. However, if the Reds finish atop the division or 28 games out of first place, I am always there rooting them on.

I have and always will bleed CINCINNATI RED!!!

Ron Madden
02-07-2006, 05:44 AM
When you say Cincinnati Reds most people think of a baseball team that is based upon winning. The older generation then might think of the days of Robinson, Kluszewski, and Nuxhall as well as all the other things I will mention. The next generation will probably think about the Big Red Machine with Pete, Tony, Johnny, Concepcion, and Morgan only to list a few. As soon as they think of the Big Red Machine they think of utter dominance of a decade of baseball. The next generation thinks about the 1990 team of Rijo, Larkin, Dibble and Browning that defied all odds. They defeated the reigning world champions when no one gave them a chance. This group of people make up probably close to 99% of the Reds fan base. For that 99% of the fans the words Cincinnati Reds are synonyms for winning baseball. I want to inform you about how that small 1% remembers the Cincinnati Reds.

I am part of a new generation of fans that when I think of Cincinnati Reds and donít hardly think about winning. I would have to think that I am a rare breed of Reds fan because of this. My grandpa was a Reds fan, my dad is a Reds fan so thats how I became a Reds fan. I am 20 years old meaning in just the past few years I have became a REAL diehard fan that my grandpa and dad are. I now live and breathe Cincinnati Reds Baseball. It wasnt till a few years ago that I became the type of fan that many of you are. Ive always been a fan but now I guess I'm a fanatic.

I was born 1985 and I can hardly remember the 1990 World Series that was the last great Cincinnati Reds moment. I was 5 years old and all I remember of that was that they won and Chris Sabo wore these big olí goggles. I donít remember one pitch of the entire series. Most people my age are not going to follow a team that doesnít win. Thatís just how they are. But I love the Reds. Win or lose, I will always be a Reds fan no matter what part of the country I end up in. So that is why I believe I am part of a very small group of people who are my age.

From the day I was born, the Reds are 1673-1655 through 21 seasons. That is a winning percentage of .503 and only 18 games above .500. I have lived through 10 winning seasons and 10 losing seasons (1 .500 season). The Reds have been to the playoffs only 2 times and won the World Series a mere 1 time. I have lived through 10 managers. A better way of putting that is that the Reds have averaged a different manager a little over every 2 seasons since I was born. That hardly sounds like the same team that many Reds fans from the other generations think of. If I want to see the Reds dominate I have to read a book or article or watch a clip. I canít just sit down and remember the winning times because they donít exists since I have been alive. There have been single seasons that were pretty good but no GREAT season or even a streak of good seasons. The great Reds moments I think of is Larkin winning the MVP and the Reds trading for the best player in baseball at the time, Ken Griffey Jr. I donít think of winning times.

Usually wisdom comes from old men talking to young lads. But I would like to reverse the roles a little bit. I would like to tell the generations before me not to take those winning years for granite. I am not going to lie; I am flat out jealous of the people who can talk about the days when the Cincinnati Reds were at the top. I do feel cheated in a way when compared to other generations of Reds fans. But for some it is easy to complain a lot about the Reds new losing ways when you have seen the other side. But I havenít seen that side. The losing way or the average way is all I know from the Reds.

You might think this is a pretty deep for a post on a message board and your probably right. But I really love the Reds and I am looking forward to this season and what seems to be a small step in the right direction with this ownership. But what I wanted to do with this post is show that the Reds arenít the same to everyone. All I have to be proud about is the history and nothing from my lifetime. But years down the road when this ship is turned around and my generation can talk to the past generations about winning there is one thing that my generation wont ever be questioned aboutÖand that is Loyalty.

Good Post, All I can say is hang with'em.

The thing about the "Good Times" is that they are far more rewarding, and enjoyable to "loyal fans" who have lived through the "hard times".

Some vistors/members in the past have complained about a negative slant in many of our discussions. They fail to understand We Are All Reds Fans Here. We all want, wish and hope for the best.

I'm 52 yrs old watched the 1961 WS on TV. with my Father and six older brothers. Attended my first Reds game in 1963 Reds beat Dodgers 1-0 Joey Jay vs some lefty named Sandy.

What I'm trying to say is we've seen good times, bad times, hard times and glory days. All we really want is to see the return of good times and maybe a few glory days.;)

StillFunkyB
02-07-2006, 08:10 AM
That was a very good post.

I grew up in Cleveland, and naturally I was an Indians fan. I remember rooting for the Reds in '90 because they were from Ohio, so it was the logical thing to do.

I moved to Cincinnati (Florence Y'all) on January 3rd, 2000. A short time later the Reds traded for that guy named Junior. I had watched Jr. several times play at old Cleveland Municipal Stadium, and Jacobs Field. I was so excited for Reds fans, because I knew they were getting someone special. I was also excited that he would be playing his home games about 15 min away.

I started following the Reds, and then I stumbled upon RedsZone. Someone had pointed it out to me, and I was hooked.

The Reds, and their fans truly are special. I really hope the Castellini knows this, or even better yet that someone points out this site to him, so he too, can realize how great Cincinnati Reds baseball should be.

Roy Tucker
02-07-2006, 09:41 AM
Great posts, all.

Like Ron Madden said, it's the bad times that make the good times all the more sweeter. All teams go through cycles. It's inevitible.

We, as Reds fans, have actually been pretty lucky with the success the team has had. Sure we've had some tough years lately, but we've also had world, league, and division championships in the 40+ years I've been following the Reds. Not that many teams can claim that.

Castellini has awaked an almost primal feeling in Reds fans. That maybe, hopefully, finally, we'll have a winner again. I'm sure we'll have some bumps along the way, but I think the Reds are back on track.

To put it in Gartner terms, the technology trigger has happened and we are in the peak of inflated expectations right now. Hopefully, the trough of disillusionament won't last long and we will reach the slope of enlightenment soon. The plateau of productivity isn't too far off.

M2
02-07-2006, 10:25 AM
To put it in Gartner terms, the technology trigger has happened and we are in the peak of inflated expectations right now. Hopefully, the trough of disillusionament won't last long and we will reach the slope of enlightenment soon. The plateau of productivity isn't too far off.

I'm just hoping the Reds don't get dropped from the magic quadrant at the moment.

MrCinatit
02-07-2006, 11:51 AM
spectacular posts, everyone.
though, hopefully, you can see the team soon from our points of view in the near future. ;)

SunDeck
02-07-2006, 01:42 PM
What a thread!
When I was a kid, of course I didn't understand that the BRM dominance was not the normal state of the universe, so it has been tough to remain with the Reds through the low times of the last decade. Nevertheless, as I learned more about the Reds I began to understand the enthusiasm my dad and his brothers had for the Reds, when they were good, but not as other worldly as the team of the 70s. He is happy if the outset of the game is not predetermined, if the name of the SP doesn't send him to another channel on the radio dial. To me, that's what it takes to be a true fan, to want your team to have a little respect and I am only sorry for the younger folks here for whom that has not been the case.

gm
02-07-2006, 02:12 PM
I was just thinking of the parallels between being a Red's fan born in 1935 versus Shak (etc) born in '85. Cincy's WS championship in 1940 at five years old corresponds with 1985~1990. Then rooting for a 2nd-division team for the most part until '61. If the "50 year cycle" holds the Reds would reach the WS again in 2011

For all the Shak and Caseyfan's out there, I hope this comes to pass

redsfan30
02-07-2006, 02:38 PM
When you say Cincinnati Reds most people think of a baseball team that is based upon winning. The older generation then might think of the days of Robinson, Kluszewski, and Nuxhall as well as all the other things I will mention. The next generation will probably think about the Big Red Machine with Pete, Tony, Johnny, Concepcion, and Morgan only to list a few. As soon as they think of the Big Red Machine they think of utter dominance of a decade of baseball. The next generation thinks about the 1990 team of Rijo, Larkin, Dibble and Browning that defied all odds. They defeated the reigning world champions when no one gave them a chance. This group of people make up probably close to 99% of the Reds fan base. For that 99% of the fans the words Cincinnati Reds are synonyms for winning baseball. I want to inform you about how that small 1% remembers the Cincinnati Reds.

I am part of a new generation of fans that when I think of Cincinnati Reds and donít hardly think about winning. I would have to think that I am a rare breed of Reds fan because of this. My grandpa was a Reds fan, my dad is a Reds fan so thats how I became a Reds fan. I am 20 years old meaning in just the past few years I have became a REAL diehard fan that my grandpa and dad are. I now live and breathe Cincinnati Reds Baseball. It wasnt till a few years ago that I became the type of fan that many of you are. Ive always been a fan but now I guess I'm a fanatic.

I was born 1985 and I can hardly remember the 1990 World Series that was the last great Cincinnati Reds moment. I was 5 years old and all I remember of that was that they won and Chris Sabo wore these big olí goggles. I donít remember one pitch of the entire series. Most people my age are not going to follow a team that doesnít win. Thatís just how they are. But I love the Reds. Win or lose, I will always be a Reds fan no matter what part of the country I end up in. So that is why I believe I am part of a very small group of people who are my age.

From the day I was born, the Reds are 1673-1655 through 21 seasons. That is a winning percentage of .503 and only 18 games above .500. I have lived through 10 winning seasons and 10 losing seasons (1 .500 season). The Reds have been to the playoffs only 2 times and won the World Series a mere 1 time. I have lived through 10 managers. A better way of putting that is that the Reds have averaged a different manager a little over every 2 seasons since I was born. That hardly sounds like the same team that many Reds fans from the other generations think of. If I want to see the Reds dominate I have to read a book or article or watch a clip. I canít just sit down and remember the winning times because they donít exists since I have been alive. There have been single seasons that were pretty good but no GREAT season or even a streak of good seasons. The great Reds moments I think of is Larkin winning the MVP and the Reds trading for the best player in baseball at the time, Ken Griffey Jr. I donít think of winning times.

Usually wisdom comes from old men talking to young lads. But I would like to reverse the roles a little bit. I would like to tell the generations before me not to take those winning years for granite. I am not going to lie; I am flat out jealous of the people who can talk about the days when the Cincinnati Reds were at the top. I do feel cheated in a way when compared to other generations of Reds fans. But for some it is easy to complain a lot about the Reds new losing ways when you have seen the other side. But I havenít seen that side. The losing way or the average way is all I know from the Reds.

You might think this is a pretty deep for a post on a message board and your probably right. But I really love the Reds and I am looking forward to this season and what seems to be a small step in the right direction with this ownership. But what I wanted to do with this post is show that the Reds arenít the same to everyone. All I have to be proud about is the history and nothing from my lifetime. But years down the road when this ship is turned around and my generation can talk to the past generations about winning there is one thing that my generation wont ever be questioned aboutÖand that is Loyalty.
This is one of the better posts I've read in a long time around here. I think I have an even greater appriciation for your post because I too was born in 1985 and have been contemplating writing a similar post for weeks. I kept putting it off because I couldn't put my love for the Reds into words and now I don't have to because you have hit on every aspect already.

I was a late bloomer to the full-blown Reds passion. I have always followed the team and always pulled for them, but at the start of the 1998 season something happened and they tugged on my heart and have never let go. I can't pinpoint the moment I became a diehard, it just seemed to happen. I went to my first game in June of 1998 on a Friday night against the Houston Astros. Even though it's been 8 years I will remember it forever. Dad and I came around the corner and Cinergy Field came into my view and my feet haven't touched the ground since. I remember being on the concourse level waiting to go into the stadium....I remember how from the gates you could see the green seats and a few advertising signs. I was in heaven right there because I could see the actual seats. I remember hearing John Walton over the PA system outside the park saying "Hello! Wecome to Cinergy Field, home of the Cincinnati Reds, and the Cincinnati Bengals. Have fun, be safe and curtious and enjoy the game."

We finally got into the stadium and found our seats. It was a Friday night during the 1998 NBA Finals. The crowd was alittle sparce because the Chicago Bulls were up 3 games to 2 over the Jazz and that night could have been Michael Jordan's last pro game. The whole field looked so prestine to me, even though as I got older I realized how crappy it really was but it will always have a special place in my heart.

Finally the game began. Craig Biggio hit a leadoff homer for the Astros and that was the only run they would score that night. Barry Larkin tied the game up in the bottom of the first with a shot of his own. The Reds offense really clicked that night, putting up 8 runs. Mike Remlinger went 8 innings to get the win and Danny Graves pitched the 9th to close it out.

Me (along with the others in this thread), being 20 years old, it's been very hard to be a fan of the Reds through the years. I take alot of flack for being a Reds fan from friends and neighbors. It's not cool to be a Reds fan right now. People ask me how I can be so passionate about a team that loses so much. My answer is always the same....If you and your mom or dad had a fight and had some rough times, would you quit loving them? Once you're in love, you're in love....through the good times and bad.

It's not all been bad over the past 10 years or so that we of this age group have been fans. 1999 was a special year. February 10, 2000 was a day I will remember until I die. The closing of Cinergy Field and the opening of Great American Ball Park. The return of Jose Rijo. Junior's chase for 500. Even though the wins haven't been there, there will always be some fond memories of the past few years for me.

Fair weather fans drive me crazy. I can't tell you how many "fans" of the White Sox showed up in my town this past October who claimed to be diehards. 90% couldn't name that first White Sox player. I will never be that type of fan and when I get married and have kids I will preach to them to not be that kind of fan or person. If me kids decide to root for another team than the Reds, so be it but I will try to instill in them not to root for a team just because they are popular at the time. Don't have 9 favorite teams in 10 years.

I could care less if every other team in baseball wins 3 World Series rings before the Reds even appear in the playoffs. The Cincinnati Reds are my passion and my love. They have been for 8 years and they will be for hopefully another 80 years. They could go 0-162 but I can promise you I would be counting down the days til Opening Day of the next season, hoping for 162-0. Nothing that the Reds could ever contemplate doing would ever even make me think of falling in love with another baseball team.

Nothing.

As somebody said earlier, I bleed Cincinnati Red and I don't give a damn who knows it.

guttle11
02-07-2006, 04:53 PM
I as well am only 20, and I feel much the same as Shaknb8k. I can remember being around 7 years old and going to Opening Day at Riverfront. It was great. Glen Braggs even threw me a ball before the game. I still have that ball.

I have fleeting memories of 1995. The one that has stuck the most is Javy Lopez(I think) hitting a home run off of the foul screen at Riverfront. I remember being crushed at the loss of that series.

The year that really made me a die-hard fan was 1999. That year was everything Reds baseball should be. Packed stadiums, wins, and fun. I'll probably never forget sitting in front of the TV all day waiting out the long, long rain delay in Milwaukee.

I hear stories from my dad and grandpa about Crosley Field and how great it was to be a Reds fan back then. I love everyone of them.

My friends often dog me because I would rather watch the Reds on TV than go out. I set my work schedules around the Reds TV games as much as I can. I'm hooked for life.

The Reds to me are much more than OPS and the W/L columns, they are a way of life, passed down through my family from generation to generation. I take pride in my Reds, good or bad. I really think that's what sets the Reds apart from most teams. How many other teams would have 5 straight losing seasons and still have so many devoted fans across the country? Few.

writerdan33
02-07-2006, 04:59 PM
I'm 38 years old. I'll be 39 on April 14, a birthdate which should ring a bell with some Reds fans.

I have been a member of the media since I was 18. I have seen and covered sports at every level. I've been on the sidelines at National Championship football games, and in the locker rooms of Major League Baseball teams. I say that not to brag in any way, so please don't take it that way. I say it to make a point.

When you cover sports for so long, you lose something of a fan's perspective. You sit in press boxes, not box seats. You hang around with other media types, not Joe Fan. You tend to grow cynical, moreso than most human beings at 9-5 jobs. Talking to a player, coach or manager is work, not privilege.

Yet baseball, specifically the Reds, cuts through all that murkiness for me. I have been to, I believe, eight games since GAB opened. All eight have been as a fan. I have yet to visit the locker rooms, the press box, the batting cages. I'm sure I will at some point, but I wanted my early experiences with this stadium to be like the ones I had with Riverfront as a kid. I can't explain it, but even now when I get to the stadium concourse and see the field come into view, I get a pounding in my chest reminiscent of the kind I got as a kid all those years ago.

Cynicism be damned. I don't ever want to lose that feeling. So far, even though the Lords that run MLB try to kill the game - as they have for over 100 years - they've yet to cause me to stay away from the park.

A couple of weeks ago, in preparation for a surprise 40th anniversary party we were throwing my parents, we were looking through some old photographs. There in the pile was a shot of my dad and me - all of five years old - in the stands at Riverfront (green seats, mind you). I had an oversize glove on my hand, and an oversize smile on my face.

No matter how old I get, or how long I'm in the sports media business, deep down I pray I always remain that five-year old kid at heart.

top6
02-07-2006, 05:26 PM
Ditto everyone who complimented this post. It's one of the best posts I've read in a long time.

Caseyfan21
02-07-2006, 05:40 PM
The year that really made me a die-hard fan was 1999. That year was everything Reds baseball should be. Packed stadiums, wins, and fun. I'll probably never forget sitting in front of the TV all day waiting out the long, long rain delay in Milwaukee.

My friends often dog me because I would rather watch the Reds on TV than go out. I set my work schedules around the Reds TV games as much as I can. I'm hooked for life.


That rain delay was something. I remember my parents forcing me to go to bed and then sneaking a radio into bed with me to listen to see if it ever got started. I still remember the picture of Dmitri Young on the front of the DDN the next day slipping in the puddle soaked outfield.

I also take lots of crap from friends. These were the friends that would go to games with me back when the Reds were more successful that have no interest any more. Although I convinced one to go to the winter caravan and I think he's back on track and I might get him to a few games this year.

westofyou
02-07-2006, 07:02 PM
That rain delay was something. I remember my parents forcing me to go to bed

Now you're just making me feel old.

RFS62
02-07-2006, 07:06 PM
Now you're just making me feel old.


No kidding.

I remember sneaking a radio to listen to Waite Hoyt.

westofyou
02-07-2006, 07:09 PM
No kidding.

I remember sneaking a radio to listen to Waite Hoyt.

Tell me about it, my first little league team was named the Senators.

buckshotrod
02-07-2006, 07:15 PM
An absolute wonderful post and thread. I was born in 1954 and can remember being a Reds fan ever since I knew what baseball was. I was born in Hamilton. When I think of Cincinnati Reds baseball, I think of history and tradition..nothing else. Yes, I would like to see them win the Series every year. But I will attend games no matter how the season goes just to see them play and enjoy the atmosphere of the fans and game. I am so fortunate to have a wife that loves them as much as myself. She probably catches more games than I as she stays up and listens to all the west coast games, too. She has her grandma to thank for her obsession. We live in Lima and can remember a few years ago when we were at the park and the game must have been delayed several times but we stayed till the bitter end. I think we never left that park till about 2 am aprox and got home about 4. We had a great time that night.

I can remember getting pink eye at 7 years old and getting sent home from school. Boy was that a blessing..the Reds and Yanks were on tv in the World Series. Led me to fake some illnesses later on in my school life to catch the World Series when they were day games. And many a time turning the portable radio on under the covers after going to bed to catch a game. One night got to catch the tailend of a Maloney no hitter vs Houston.

Lots of great memories and I hope you young guys can look back at them 30 years from now and still enjoy them just as much as you do now.

Rambling...so I will close.

M2
02-07-2006, 07:24 PM
Here's my question: I don't doubt the Reds have some savagely loyal younger fans, but do they have casual ones?

1982-84 was all the lesson I needed in how sweet the good times can be, but I wonder if the past decade has left too many would-be Reds fans obivious to event he notion of good times.

vaticanplum
02-07-2006, 07:33 PM
Here's my question: I don't doubt the Reds have some savagely loyal younger fans, but do they have casual ones?

1982-84 was all the lesson I needed in how sweet the good times can be, but I wonder if the past decade has left too many would-be Reds fans obivious to event he notion of good times.

From my limited experience, I think so. Certain players are a big help with this. I have little cousins who aren't huge baseball fans and probably don't quite understand the game, but they still have "Grow with Griffey" hanging in their bedroom. They still like to go to games. Dunn is a great charmer to people otherwise unfamiliar with the Reds. (I've heard) the ballpark is nice too.

I also have some (relatively) more grown-up friends who, if I may be so self-serving, follow the team somewhat because they happen to have rabid fan-friends. This has happened to me with other teams as well. They don't really care about the Reds on a day-to-day basis, but they know when something big happens, and they're happy about it. Even people who aren't die-hard Reds fans are still pretty aware of the history of the team of they follow baseball at all.

edit: Also, I think it's important to note that the Reds are not a team that inspires hatred -- some well-deserved teasing, yes, but not hatred. That's getting rarer among teams, and it helps.

Redlegs23
02-07-2006, 09:43 PM
I love this post and feel that you are explaining my life. I have a couple of years on you since I'm 22, but the '90 season isn't exactly a clear memory for me either. Basically I've always been a Reds fan, but when I moved to Cincinnati 4 years ago for college I became completely obsessed. The Reds are in my blood and my love for the Reds keeps growing stronger. I enjoyed your post, and thanks for speaking for the younger generation that hasn't gotten to enjoy as much glory as some of these geezers on here ;)

Shaknb8k
02-07-2006, 10:13 PM
I would like to say something about what Writerdan said about being in the media. One of my best friends covers WVU (West Virginia University) sports up in Morgantown. He does all the player and coach interviews for basketball and football. He is pretty much on a first name basis with all of them. I thought it was pretty awsome that he got to "hang out" with all the players that I watch on tv. He loves WVU sports about as much as I love the Reds. Just the other day i asked him...When you have to go to a basketball or football game does it ever feel like your going to work rather than a game? His answer was yes many times. Even to the extent that he has lost some of his passion for WVU sports.

From that day (which was only a few days ago) on I promised myself that the Reds would never be like that to me. Im going down a different path (criminal justice) not media relations or something like that so I probably will never have to worry about this. But I always thought he had an awsome job until I thought about this. The day will never come that I dont want to watch a Reds game or baseball game for that much.

Once I walk through the gates or flip the TV on to watch a baseball game I ,just like writerdan and many of you, will always be a kid. Thats what makes baseball great. Its not getting to know the players or getting paid to watch games and write about them. What makes baseball and Cincinnati Reds baseball great is that its a game not a job.

Caseyfan21
02-08-2006, 12:29 AM
Now you're just making me feel old.

I was in 8th grade. Thinking about it makes me even feel old. 1999 really seems like just yesterday but then I step back and realize it's over 6 years ago. Not to get all off topic and sentimental, but time really does fly. I still hate Al Leiter to this day and boo him every time I see hime pitch because of that 5-0 game. :laugh: