Re: Small Market
GAC, the reasons why the Reds signed Junior is basically this: Jim Bowden
My guess is that most of the Reds FO was against the Griffey deal. Bowden after the 99 season got the go ahead to do the deal as a attempt to "jump start" the dormant portions of the Reds market into raising overall revenue for the company. The problem was, the product couldn't match what it did in 99. Lets be clear, the 00 team was a one shot deal. Harnish was about washed up,Neagle was at the tale end of his career height, Parris and Villone were 'treads' and acted like it. So what happens in 2000, a bunch of fanfare, hype and dreams, but in the end:
1)Steve Parris,Ron Villone,Ed Taubensee and Pokey Reese can't match 1999
2)Harnich and Casey have bad injuries to begin the season and aren't fully healthy to July
3)Barry Larkin has injury plagued season
4)Rob Bell shows early signs of bustdom
5)Dante Bichette was still on the roster at the start of the season shortening the payroll that had doubled since 1998(24-48 mill, which it was in 1995).
6)Griffey had a horrible 2 months
Bowden couldn't afford to miss with the 2000 team. By 100 games it was apparent the team needed some major infusion to even give them a chance in September, not what was expected in April. So they gave up with the Neagle deal,which Bowden busted on. It was a bullet that missed the target and struck Reds fans in the heart. Jr is somebody that maybe doesn't deserve to take the full fall, but he is able target, in the view of the fan. But the deal that supposedly remade the team, destroyed them.