PDA

View Full Version : Is it OK to call it a choke and still be proud of them?



Edskin
10-11-2012, 05:14 PM
Because this is where I am?

They didn't lose three games in a row at home all year... Given the opportunity to win one of three at home and they can't do it... Pretty much the definition of a choke. Then, when you add up all the missed chances in games 3 and 5.....

This was a great year... I appreciate how well they played and I am proud of the division title. I am always proud of how they clawed back in game 5 and didn't fold. They certainly put their hearts in it.

But ten years from now when we think of 2012 it will be hard not to think of the ending first. And that, well, that just totally sucks.

paulrichjr
10-11-2012, 05:15 PM
This hurts so much more than 2010. So much more.

cinreds21
10-11-2012, 05:15 PM
It is OK. It was an amazing season. They went through adversity with losing their star, Bruce struggling, Stubbs hitting rock bottom and Rolen getting old. It sucks that they lose three games in a row like that when it really mattered, but a great season nonetheless.

RichRed
10-11-2012, 05:17 PM
This hurts so much more than 2010. So much more.

Yep. I'll get over it but right now, I want to both puke and cry.

Caveat Emperor
10-11-2012, 05:18 PM
Cubs fans get proud about non-October baseball games.

OnBaseMachine
10-11-2012, 05:18 PM
It was a great season, up until the Reds choked away three games at home. Now it's a failure in my book.

wheels
10-11-2012, 05:18 PM
It was an epic choke and I don't care who knows it.

I still love what happened this season, and I know deep down that a Reds club firing on all cylinders blows that Giants team out of the water.

When a team has a 90% chance of winning, and they lose while being swept three in a row at home.....that's a choke. Call it what it is.

westofyou
10-11-2012, 05:19 PM
Cubs fans get proud about non-October baseball games.

You must know crummy Cubs fans because the ones I know are hardly proud.

And yes Ed they choked away their chance this year and yes, it was fine season to be proud in.

Patrick Bateman
10-11-2012, 05:23 PM
That was anything but a choke.

Those guys battled extremely hard to win that game. They lived up to the pressure situations, unfortunately, it's very difficult to get the break through hit.

vaticanplum
10-11-2012, 05:42 PM
This hurts so, so much more than 2010, but it's also worth so much more, if that makes any sense.

In 2010 they were lucky to be there. In this postseason, luck didn't go their way. I don't think they choked. I think they were not well managed, and I think they had as many miscues as any team will have in a high-pressure five-game series.

And then they had some bad luck. They had their best pitcher go down. They had their best hitter playing, really, at about 50%. They had some crappy calls. I don't think it's to the degree of a curse or conspiracy. It's bad luck. It's baseball.

They also had jaw-dropping performances by Arroyo, Bailey, and just about everybody who stepped up to pitch in the first game. They had some clutch hitting and some clever hitting. They had Ryan Ludwick. They had Brandon Phillips, and if there's anything I'm going to remember about Brandon Phillips this whole series, it's going to be him grinning ear-to-ear standing as a runner on his own base in the bottom of the seventh. I was ready to chew my own ear off and he was having the time of his life.

The bottom of the ninth was probably the most stressful half-inning of baseball I've ever experienced, and this was as crushing a loss as i hope I'll ever have to take. That said, I don't think I'll remember this badly. I can't hate the Giants or blame the umps. The Reds fought very hard, sometimes more successfully than others, but over five games, I really think they did everything they could with the luck they were given. I love this team. I love baseball. I hate losing. But the team and baseball both showed up for this series, and sometimes that's still a loss.

AtomicDumpling
10-11-2012, 05:46 PM
"Choked" means to cave under the pressure. I certainly don't think the Reds caved under the pressure. They played hard, pitched great, got tons of men on base and lost to a team that was playing great. If Votto and Cueto were healthy it likely would have been different. Calling this a choke is pretty clueless in my opinion.

powersackers
10-11-2012, 06:28 PM
Choke - Yes. Failed - Yes. I believed, I cheered, I never gave up hope. But they choked / failed on an unprecedented scale. It will be forever referenced as such. If you are proud of the effort it is OK I feel a bit of that myself. But I am not proud of the result.

Ghosts of 1990
10-11-2012, 06:51 PM
We see eye to eye on a lot, Edskin.

PuffyPig
10-11-2012, 06:57 PM
The Reds failed to win, but it was anything but a choke.

Baseball is such a random game, that a great team can play well but lose through randomness.

Caveat Emperor
10-11-2012, 07:02 PM
Losing 3 straight playoff games at home, after dominating 2 on the road, is a choke. They had 3 chances to put away a team and couldn't do it.

That's choking. Calling it anything else gives too much credit to the team.

Joseph
10-11-2012, 07:56 PM
A wonderfully talented team did choke. Failure to accept that fact is living in denial. Game 5 less so than games 3 and 4, but its a choke all the same.

cincrazy
10-11-2012, 08:04 PM
I love this team. There will be better days. But they choked. Yes, there was some bad luck. But that's just an excuse. Last year, the Cards had bad luck. And overcame it. The Giants had bad luck. They overcame it. The Reds had every opportunity to takes both games 3 and 4, and couldn't get it done. Couldn't make pitches when they needed to, couldn't field the ball cleanly, and couldn't hit with runners on. I don't know what IS a choke job if this isn't.

It's baseball. It happens. But it's going to be a rough winter.

cincrazy
10-11-2012, 08:05 PM
I never thought anything could hurt worse than 1999. But this does.

Caveat Emperor
10-11-2012, 08:10 PM
The worst part about all this is thinking how lucky this team got in terms of health -- the odds of them getting another year of total SP health is remote.

Small market teams often have windows that last but one year. I genuinely fear we missed the best opportunity for a World Championship this team will have for a long time.

Wonderful Monds
10-11-2012, 08:14 PM
The worst part about all this is thinking how lucky this team got in terms of health -- the odds of them getting another year of total SP health is remote.

Small market teams often have windows that last but one year. I genuinely fear we missed the best opportunity for a World Championship this team will have for a long time.

Arguably we got the worst luck we possibly could have with player health, especially SP health

Caveat Emperor
10-11-2012, 08:17 PM
Arguably we got the worst luck we possibly could have with player health, especially SP health

At the end, yes.

The only reason they were in such a position, though, is because their best pitchers made 30+ starts and they never had to dip down to scrubs from AAA for multiple starts.

Roy Tucker
10-11-2012, 08:19 PM
Game 3 was as tight as any game could be. The Reds pitching was brilliant but blinked at a crucial time. If you want to call that a choke, then OK.

Game 4 they just lost. It happens.

Today they could have folded up the tent and gone home after being down 6-zip. But they battled back and continually threatened. Just could never get that big hit.

But I've been a Reds fan for 48 years, been to winning games of LDS's and NLCS's, and World Series games, and the bottom of the 9th was the most thrilling 1/2 inning I've ever seen. Standing in the middle of a roaring crowd yelling my fool head off was awesome. Bruce's at-bat was epic. They just came up short. It happens. I wouldn't call it a choke. I'd say injuries and a short staff caught up to them and they lost.

Crumbley
10-11-2012, 08:24 PM
I am distressingly invested in the successes and failures of our ball club. This year featured far more of the former than latter. Incredibly proud of hanging in there after their ace gets bounced in the first. Proud of that crazy game where our AAA team beat the Cubs.

To me, 2010 was a choke. Guys were playing scared. This year they just got beat.

Wonderful Monds
10-11-2012, 08:25 PM
At the end, yes.

The only reason they were in such a position, though, is because their best pitchers made 30+ starts and they never had to dip down to scrubs from AAA for multiple starts.

Didn't happen for SP, but it sure as hell did for the apparent NL MVP of the first half. And yet, they managed fine without it.

I think they need more SP depth, but I think they can get it (or are already developing it right now.)

jojo
10-11-2012, 08:28 PM
It was a great season that ended about as edifyingly as a Stephen King novel.

The joy the season in its entirety brought far outweighs the bitter taste of the last three days even though it's still fresh on the tongue.

As October fades, the season will shine brighter in the rear view mirror, especially as we look forward to the sunrise of next season.

dsmith421
10-11-2012, 08:28 PM
To me, 2010 was a choke. Guys were playing scared. This year they just got beat.

I think that's backwards. In 2010 we got absolutely murdered by two of the best pitchers in baseball. We blew Game 2, but honestly, the chances of that club beating Halladay in a Game 4 were miniscule.

This year we had S.F. on the ropes and we absolutely gagged. TBS stated that Dusty was 1-9 in his last 10 "close out" games during Game 4, and it showed.

Reds Freak
10-11-2012, 08:31 PM
It's 8:30pm and I think I'm over the frustration of this game and the past three days. Right now, I'm just depressed that the season is over. Reds baseball is such a constant from April-September that no matter how it ends, I hate to see it.

I almost wish it could be June forever. The weather is nice, the summer is just beginning and the Reds are there every night for us to watch, listen, follow along, analyze, agonize, cheer, speculate. Now what?

KronoRed
10-11-2012, 08:35 PM
Maybe next year the season will feel better, but right now it just stinks.

KittyDuran
10-11-2012, 08:35 PM
I been a fan since 1969 - can I give the team the "choke" label for 1970-1973 seasons, or is it only reserved if you fail in the first round? After the Fisk HR in '75 before the 7th game, I was thinking that the team needed a "curse" to cover up the failure to win it all.

oneupper
10-11-2012, 09:09 PM
Choke yes. Historic? Hardly.
And yes, the 2012 REDS were a team to be proud of. Over-achievers in some respects, and adversity beaters in others. The division was theirs with surprising ease.
Overall, a good year. We'll get over this bad ending soon enough.
It would be nice to get another shot next year.

powersackers
10-11-2012, 09:32 PM
Choke yes. Historic? Hardly.
And yes, the 2012 REDS were a team to be proud of. Over-achievers in some respects, and adversity beaters in others. The division was theirs with surprising ease.
Overall, a good year. We'll get over this bad ending soon enough.
It would be nice to get another shot next year.

Failing to win 1 of 3 at home is historic in the NL, never been done. Historic in baseball, second time ever.

Tony Cloninger
10-11-2012, 09:32 PM
How do they react to this? The Mets have not recovered or did not recover from chocking during the regular season with Randolph. Boston took a year from 1986 until 1988 but they could never beat OAK in 88 and 90 and then basically disappeared for about a decade from real contending.

The 1962 Dodgers took only 1 year to recover. Now it's going to be who cares if they win the division...if they are going to go all early 2000's Oakland A's or mid 2000's Twins on themselves.

Tom Servo
10-11-2012, 09:35 PM
Good season, terrible ending.

MrCinatit
10-11-2012, 09:41 PM
But of course.
They choked, big...but they are still our ballclub.
I was rather sure after watching the grounder bounce of Rolen that the season was virtually over for the Reds. I could see the scared look in their eyes. But, but did not matter - still watched what I could, still rooted for them to the very end.
They a lot of good youngsters who got a little bit more post season experience this year. And watching a team celebrate a playoff win on their own turf, that has to hurt. Let us hope they never forget it.
But, even were they to go back into the dark abyss they were in six years ago again...I would still lovingly follow them. Once and always a Reds fan.

oneupper
10-11-2012, 09:46 PM
Failing to win 1 of 3 at home is historic in the NL, never been done. Historic in baseball, second time ever.

Bad choice of words. Historic, yes because it was the first in the NL. Epic or memorable. No.

Epic chokes was Philly in '64, Mets in '07, Braves and Sox last year in the regular season.

Even the Giants in the '02 WS, the Buckner Red Sox, the Rangers in '11 etc, etc...were more "chokish". And who can forget the '03 NLCS Cubs.

This one won't be remembered like that.
Did the Cards choke in the '68 WS or the Sox in '67? (losing the last 3 as did several others).
No one really considers those chokes, rather Tiger and Card "comebacks".

This will be a Giant "comeback" in a preliminary series and will remembered only when some team goes up two games on another on the road in a LDS.
Historic Footnote. A really tough trivia answer.

Ghosts of 1990
10-11-2012, 09:57 PM
Been a long time since I had chills like I did in the bottom of the 9th today when Jay Bruce fought Sergio Romo for 12 pitches like he was battling a lion. That was one of the gutsiest efforts I've ever seen in my life.

I knew they would probably lose. And yes they choked. But I was damn proud to know that was my team at that moment.

Edskin
10-11-2012, 10:23 PM
I could actually feel my heart rate increase in the 9th... I was holding my 10 month old son and pacing. My father-in-law picked up my daughter from school but just drove her around because he knew it was the very end of the game and he didn't "want to subject her to that" :)

The Bruce AB was excruciating. He finally did what I asked him to do all year... Total focus, wait for his pitch, battle. No guessing or give up swings. I am not made at Bruce for flying out... He did everything he could to try and win that game for us. The team gave a tremendous effort today... And came up short. I am 100% content with what they gave.

But that doesn't change the fact, that it was indeed, a choke. Not a historically colossal choke maybe, but a choke for sure. This was a 90% FT shooter missing two to win the game... A kicker shanking a 30 yard FG... Winning 1 of 3 at home when you haven't lost three in a row all year is not asking much. Doing so when your opponent has 1 hit entering the 9th inning is asking even less.

Today, the Giants made some fabulous plays. Their star hit a grand slam, their ace kept us at bay, and two of their role players made huge defensive plays. We came close to matching those plays, but we didn't.

Baseball is a game of patience and process. But in the playoffs, you run out of time. Drawing a walk or getting an infield single isn't good enough. Sometimes in October someone has to step up and put one in the stands. We just couldn't quite get there.

13 years ago on a Friday night in Milwaukee Marquis Grissom robbed Eddie Taubensee of what very well might have been a game winning hit in extra innings. When I look back at 1999, I remember that amazing summer with fondness for sure. But nothing is etched in my memory like that Grissom catch. I can still see it plain as day. I guess you could say it haunts me.

And 13 years from now I have a feeling I will see the many plays today that didn't go our way that might have changed the outcome.

It stings.... When will I get over it? Never. And that's the truth. Have you gotten over the joy of the 1990 team? Do you not care about that anymore? Sure you do... And if the A's rallied to win the series you wouldn't remember it so fondly, would you?

That's why the tension was so thick today... Because the outcome that was about occur is forever irreversible.

Edskin
10-11-2012, 10:24 PM
We see eye to eye on a lot, Edskin.

I'm so sorry for you.....

:)

Wonderful Monds
10-11-2012, 10:31 PM
I'm so sorry for you.....

:)

As an aside I've read this board for years and am familiar with many posters here, and I just *now* realized that your name is a reference to the Redskins. Man I am slow.

vic715
10-12-2012, 03:59 AM
I been a fan since 1969 - can I give the team the "choke" label for 1970-1973 seasons, or is it only reserved if you fail in the first round? After the Fisk HR in '75 before the 7th game, I was thinking that the team needed a "curse" to cover up the failure to win it all.

This is my 52nd season and I don't think I ever felt any worse than I felt when they blew game 6 in that 75 WS,but when they lost game 3 Tuesday night I had the same gut wrenching feeling I had then.We all know that that team came back,but I just didn't have that same confidence in this team.This team is young and yes maybe it was a choke, or maybe they just aren't ready yet.

redsmetz
10-12-2012, 05:27 AM
Game 3 was as tight as any game could be. The Reds pitching was brilliant but blinked at a crucial time. If you want to call that a choke, then OK.

Game 4 they just lost. It happens.

Today they could have folded up the tent and gone home after being down 6-zip. But they battled back and continually threatened. Just could never get that big hit.

But I've been a Reds fan for 48 years, been to winning games of LDS's and NLCS's, and World Series games, and the bottom of the 9th was the most thrilling 1/2 inning I've ever seen. Standing in the middle of a roaring crowd yelling my fool head off was awesome. Bruce's at-bat was epic. They just came up short. It happens. I wouldn't call it a choke. I'd say injuries and a short staff caught up to them and they lost.

I think this reflects my thoughts pretty well. Throughout these three games, I've come to the conclusions that at times it's just a small thing that makes the difference. Really yesterday's game came down to one pitch and Posey deposited it in the seats. Lots of "what ifs" throughout these games. Cozart not just conceding the run and getting the out. The double steal attempt twice ending with the out at third (was I the only one who thought both times seemed more like runners moving with two outs rather than the steal they were attempting?). The good, sliding catch of Navarro's batted ball. The hard line out right at the shortstop. Inches, as they say. WOY says this, it's a cruel game.

But this team didn't quit. I was sad, but not angry, at the game's end. It was almost emblematic of the season itself. And finally it just wasn't there. I said to my wife that the strikeout might well be Scottie's last AB and now that seems to be the case.

We could have won, missed many an opportunity throughout the home stand. We didn't. It doesn't minimize the good season, really one of the best in Reds history. Was this our only opportunity? I'm doubtful, but one never knows. The 1970 season was followed by a woeful 1971. Then the World Series, another loss; losing to the Mets in '73. By the time we got back in 1975, it seemed like the usual choke was coming on, but they prevailed. That team was one for the ages and one not likely to be ever seen again. But, as Vaticanplum put it, this team was tenacious and I liked that description a lot. In the final analysis, they fell short.

Also, I can't take anything away from the Giants. They played each game full well knowing it could be their last this season. Maybe that's why I dreaded going to a Game 5. But hat's off to them. I wish them well, particularly if the Nats don't prevail.

But I'm not particularly on board with calling this a choke. As said earlier, it's a cruel game, one of inches and that's the way it is. February will be here soon enough and we'll start a new season again. Onward.

vaticanplum
10-12-2012, 08:50 AM
I feel like if we're arguing about whether it's a choke, it's not a choke.

Chokes are obvious. Chokes are astounding. Chokes leave everyone watching the game, not just the fans of the losing team, in disbelief that what is happening is even possible. I watched the Yankees win Game 3 of 3 in the 2004 ALCS 19-8. It was wrapped up. As we all know, what happened next was a choke. giving up a grand slam in the second inning of the seventh inning and then visibly, palpably surrendering on the field. It was like they weren't even trying, weren't even breathing. That is a choke.

In 2010 the Reds sniffed victory in only one out of three games. That comes close to choke. In the one game in which they came close, they fumbled and lost it. That comes even closer. That felt like a choke to me, but in hindsight I think it was just getting beat by a better team.

"Choke" implies that all you had to do to win was not mess up. That it was yours unless you went out of your way to lose it. You can look at the whole picture of this and say that after winning two games convincingly, that was the case here. I think that's simplistic. As Roy says, Game 3 was a tight game. It could have gone either way. The Reds had one bobble; they didn't throw away the game. That leaves Game 4, which they lost under questionable pitching. Not a choke. And Game 5 which they came very close to winning in the ninth after being down 6-0. Even if they had lost that game 6-0 -- probably not a choke. In Game 7 of the 2004 ALDS the Yankees went on to give up four more home runs after the Damon grand slam. Yesterday was one bad inning from one pitcher.

I think sports fans in general have started to overuse the word choke. I think we're using it here because we're hurt. The fact that the Reds battled to win Game 1 after Cueto went down alone shows this was not a choke. They should have lost that game. They had masterful starting pitching in Games 2 and 3. The offense had flashes of brilliance throughout. When they lost, they lost because they just lost like baseball teams do a lot of the time. They didn't choke.

Chip R
10-12-2012, 09:59 AM
If this was any other team, we'd be calling it a choke.

CySeymour
10-12-2012, 10:05 AM
I think it's fair to call it a choke. But I am still proud to be a Reds fan.

RFS62
10-12-2012, 11:36 AM
Game 3 was as tight as any game could be. The Reds pitching was brilliant but blinked at a crucial time. If you want to call that a choke, then OK.

Game 4 they just lost. It happens.

Today they could have folded up the tent and gone home after being down 6-zip. But they battled back and continually threatened. Just could never get that big hit.

But I've been a Reds fan for 48 years, been to winning games of LDS's and NLCS's, and World Series games, and the bottom of the 9th was the most thrilling 1/2 inning I've ever seen. Standing in the middle of a roaring crowd yelling my fool head off was awesome. Bruce's at-bat was epic. They just came up short. It happens. I wouldn't call it a choke. I'd say injuries and a short staff caught up to them and they lost.


I think this reflects my thoughts pretty well. Throughout these three games, I've come to the conclusions that at times it's just a small thing that makes the difference. Really yesterday's game came down to one pitch and Posey deposited it in the seats. Lots of "what ifs" throughout these games. Cozart not just conceding the run and getting the out. The double steal attempt twice ending with the out at third (was I the only one who thought both times seemed more like runners moving with two outs rather than the steal they were attempting?). The good, sliding catch of Navarro's batted ball. The hard line out right at the shortstop. Inches, as they say. WOY says this, it's a cruel game.

But this team didn't quit. I was sad, but not angry, at the game's end. It was almost emblematic of the season itself. And finally it just wasn't there. I said to my wife that the strikeout might well be Scottie's last AB and now that seems to be the case.

We could have won, missed many an opportunity throughout the home stand. We didn't. It doesn't minimize the good season, really one of the best in Reds history. Was this our only opportunity? I'm doubtful, but one never knows. The 1970 season was followed by a woeful 1971. Then the World Series, another loss; losing to the Mets in '73. By the time we got back in 1975, it seemed like the usual choke was coming on, but they prevailed. That team was one for the ages and one not likely to be ever seen again. But, as Vaticanplum put it, this team was tenacious and I liked that description a lot. In the final analysis, they fell short.

Also, I can't take anything away from the Giants. They played each game full well knowing it could be their last this season. Maybe that's why I dreaded going to a Game 5. But hat's off to them. I wish them well, particularly if the Nats don't prevail.

But I'm not particularly on board with calling this a choke. As said earlier, it's a cruel game, one of inches and that's the way it is. February will be here soon enough and we'll start a new season again. Onward.


I feel like if we're arguing about whether it's a choke, it's not a choke.

Chokes are obvious. Chokes are astounding. Chokes leave everyone watching the game, not just the fans of the losing team, in disbelief that what is happening is even possible. I watched the Yankees win Game 3 of 3 in the 2004 ALCS 19-8. It was wrapped up. As we all know, what happened next was a choke. giving up a grand slam in the second inning of the seventh inning and then visibly, palpably surrendering on the field. It was like they weren't even trying, weren't even breathing. That is a choke.

In 2010 the Reds sniffed victory in only one out of three games. That comes close to choke. In the one game in which they came close, they fumbled and lost it. That comes even closer. That felt like a choke to me, but in hindsight I think it was just getting beat by a better team.

"Choke" implies that all you had to do to win was not mess up. That it was yours unless you went out of your way to lose it. You can look at the whole picture of this and say that after winning two games convincingly, that was the case here. I think that's simplistic. As Roy says, Game 3 was a tight game. It could have gone either way. The Reds had one bobble; they didn't throw away the game. That leaves Game 4, which they lost under questionable pitching. Not a choke. And Game 5 which they came very close to winning in the ninth after being down 6-0. Even if they had lost that game 6-0 -- probably not a choke. In Game 7 of the 2004 ALDS the Yankees went on to give up four more home runs after the Damon grand slam. Yesterday was one bad inning from one pitcher.

I think sports fans in general have started to overuse the word choke. I think we're using it here because we're hurt. The fact that the Reds battled to win Game 1 after Cueto went down alone shows this was not a choke. They should have lost that game. They had masterful starting pitching in Games 2 and 3. The offense had flashes of brilliance throughout. When they lost, they lost because they just lost like baseball teams do a lot of the time. They didn't choke.



It really comes down to the definition and context implied with the use of the word "choke".

To me, "choke" for an individual player means to tighten up and perform at a lower level than his average.

Did the Reds individuals do this, or did they just get outplayed, along with some old fashioned bad luck, perhaps the one thing that has been with championship baseball since it began in the 1800's.

I don't think they choked. Did the odds favor us to win one of three at home? Sure. Did they favor us sweeping 2 on the dreaded West Coast? That would be laughable to have predicted. Perhaps the Giants choked in those two games.

We lost our ace and the best player in baseball was a shadow of himself since the injury. The Giants reached back for something extra and played inspired baseball.

I loved the season and this definitely hurts. It's like handing us an ice cream cone after game two, then smacking it out of our hands at the brutal end.

I imagine there will be enough wailing and gnashing of teeth around here for weeks to come that we may need a separate forum for "ProzacZone".

Hoosier Red
10-12-2012, 12:52 PM
I almost wish it could be June forever. The weather is nice, the summer is just beginning and the Reds are there every night for us to watch, listen, follow along, analyze, agonize, cheer, speculate. Now what?

Were there no winter, we wouldn't know it's spring.

Some poet said that once, and it's the only bit of poetry that's ever stuck with me.

Screwball
10-12-2012, 01:00 PM
If this was any other team, we'd be calling it a choke.

Probably. Doesn't necessarily mean we'd be right, though.

Hoosier Red
10-12-2012, 01:07 PM
I think sports fans in general have started to overuse the word choke. I think we're using it here because we're hurt. The fact that the Reds battled to win Game 1 after Cueto went down alone shows this was not a choke. They should have lost that game. They had masterful starting pitching in Games 2 and 3. The offense had flashes of brilliance throughout. When they lost, they lost because they just lost like baseball teams do a lot of the time. They didn't choke.

I couldn't agree more. Choking isn't equivalent to losing. Choking isn't equivalent to playing poorly. Every one plays poorly on occassion. Choking is reserved for the losses that can only be explained by the fact they choked.

If Mat Latos strikes out Buster Posey and the Reds come back to win the game, he's seen as clutch. In my mind, for the definitions to mean something, there has to be some area in between clutch and choke.

SunDeck
10-12-2012, 01:16 PM
I don't exactly know what choking is. Did the Giants choke at home? To me it's more like the post season showed the Reds weaknesses, mainly the thing we saw in the late season, an inability to score runs when they needed to. One of the things I love about post season baseball is that a team can't fake their way to the World Series. If you have weak seams, the post season is where they can rip wide open. It didn't seem to me like the Reds choked as much as they just reverted back to the way they were playing in September.

HokieRed
10-12-2012, 03:04 PM
I don't see it as a choke because the outstanding factor in their demise was the injury to Johnny Cueto. This was a good team with a solid rotation that stayed healthier than any I ever remember. Ironic that an injury to a starter, this year's best, in the first inning of the playoffs was what brought them down.

AtomicDumpling
10-12-2012, 03:21 PM
Just because they lost doesn't mean they choked. There is a big difference that some folks don't seem to understand.

Choking means to cave in under the pressure of a stressful situation.

The Reds didn't wilt under the pressure at all. They fought like crazy. They pitched great (even without their ace), made very few mistakes in the field (the couple they did make were key though because the games were so close), and battled hard at the plate every inning. They played well and fought like warriors and lost by the thinnest of margins to another excellent baseball team. They didn't choke at all.

If they hadn't played well you could say they choked. If they had given the games away you could say they choked. If they failed to play hard or were intimidated you could say they choked. None of those things happened so it is not fair nor accurate to say they choked. They just got beaten by a top-notch opponent in a very tight series. No shame in that.

Edskin
10-12-2012, 04:57 PM
I define a choke as failing to do something in a pressure situation that you would normally do. This was a choke...not a historic or overly dramatic one, but a choke nonetheless.

Caveat Emperor
10-12-2012, 05:04 PM
They just got beaten by a top-notch opponent in a very tight series. No shame in that.

Every opponent in the playoffs is a "top notch" opponent -- you should still be able to win 1 home game out of 3 against any of them.

It wasn't a "very tight series" either -- they blew the Giants out in two straight games on the road. They were on their way to steamrolling through the first round until they fell asleep at the switch and allowed the Giants to make it a close contest.

Calling this anything other than a choke lets the players off the hook for their abysmal showing.

westofyou
10-12-2012, 05:08 PM
If you call it a choke it absolves you from being guilty of being a fan of the team... that's the message I hear being repeated over and over again.

Have at it if you must.

Game's too hard for me to be even swayed into that line of thinking.

AtomicDumpling
10-12-2012, 07:48 PM
Every opponent in the playoffs is a "top notch" opponent -- you should still be able to win 1 home game out of 3 against any of them.

It wasn't a "very tight series" either -- they blew the Giants out in two straight games on the road. They were on their way to steamrolling through the first round until they fell asleep at the switch and allowed the Giants to make it a close contest.

Calling this anything other than a choke lets the players off the hook for their abysmal showing.

A series that comes down to the last pitch of the last game is a very tight series.

The Reds didn't play abysmally at all. They played very, very well in a tough situation without their ace and with their superstar hitter at 50% health. They didn't fall asleep, they played hard all the way through. Saying they choked is way off the mark and rather spiteful.

Revering4Blue
10-12-2012, 08:11 PM
Is it OK to call it a choke and still be proud of them?

Simple answer: Yes.

Chip R
10-12-2012, 09:50 PM
A series that comes down to the last pitch of the last game is a very tight series.

The Reds didn't play abysmally at all. They played very, very well in a tough situation without their ace and with their superstar hitter at 50% health. They didn't fall asleep, they played hard all the way through. Saying they choked is way off the mark and rather spiteful.

If it were any other team; if it were the Cubs or Pirates or Cardinals or Yankees or Red Sox, we would be besides ourselves with glee and making memes about how much those teams choked and making every kind of joke about choking that we could. Doesn't mean those teams wouldn't have played well or maybe they had to fight through injuries. We wouldn't care about that because we would be making fun of those other teams for choking. When you are up 2-0 and you have the next 3 games at home, where you haven't lost 3 in a row all year, and you can't win a game, it's a choke. I love the Reds and I'm proud of them for what they did this year but that was a choke.