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Thread: Your rooting interest

  1. #1
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    Your rooting interest

    Guys . . . Under a different username, I’ve been a regular here for a few thousand posts. A couple years ago, I also established this account under my name, for the purpose of discussing a subject on which I’ve been writing a book. I haven’t followed-up in quite a while, but now have occasion to solicit some input from thoughtful fans like many of you.

    The book (tentatively titled Intangiball) is about the value of intangibles in baseball. While it wanders far afield and involves many organizations, the Reds—specifically, their editions of 2008 to 2012—sort of hold the narrative together. Anyway, the first draft and heavy lifting are now finished, but the editor suggests folding in more testimony from fans whose attraction to the game in based, at least to a large degree, on its human elements. This is not indicative of any anti-sabermetric theme, but a supposition that, while the numbers appeal to and fascinate many fans, the fundamental passion that draws folks to baseball is, to a large extent, a function of its theater, ambiance, subtlety, color, and various subjective aspects; its personal side, in other words.

    In that context, I’d be interested in hearing from you guys (gender neutral) on any number of relevant topics. Things like * whether your rooting interest in the Reds is at all related to the character, effort, and personalities of the individuals who make up the roster; * whether, and why, your attraction to the team has fluctuated over the seasons; * whether your affinity for the club declined or picked up (if either) after Griffey and Dunn were traded; * whether you believe that Jocketty’s penchant for bringing in players with evident character/leadership assets—Rolen, Cabrera, Ludwick, perhaps Gomes—has played a substantial role in the organization’s competitive upturn over the past few years.

    If anyone would prefer to discuss this through private messaging, that’s fine. The more personal your remarks, the better. Thanks.

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    Moderator Plus Plus's Avatar
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    You can feel free to PM me a questionnaire and I will provide answers for you.

    Good luck!
    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou View Post
    Thus his team was punished

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  4. #3
    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    While the numbers appeal to and fascinate many fans, the fundamental passion that draws folks to baseball is, to a large extent, a function of its theater, ambiance, subtlety, color, and various subjective aspects; its personal side, in other words.
    The pattern of the game is entwined with summer, it is so ingrained that each day without any baseball seems endless and void of any joy. It's so important and yet so unimportant in the grand scheme of things. It's bigger than numbers, it's as large as each fan makes it, it's really a wonderful part of life.

    I'm open to any questions back channel

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    Re: Your rooting interest

    Love the topic.

    Will PM to you, LW.
    "Baseball is a very, very complex business. It's more of a people business than most businesses." - Bob Castellini

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    Member cumberlandreds's Avatar
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    You can PM me. I have been a Reds fan for over 40 years. If you can use an old guy perspective just let me know.
    Reds Fan Since 1971

  8. #6
    Member Norm Chortleton's Avatar
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    * whether your rooting interest in the Reds is at all related to the character, effort, and personalities of the individuals who make up the roster
    Character, no. Effort and personalities, yes.

    * whether, and why, your attraction to the team has fluctuated over the seasons
    My first memories of Reds games begin in 1970. I've always watched as many games as possible on tv and listened on the radio in the old days -- even when they were 20 games back in September. I have, however, chosen to boycott going to games and spending money when I felt management wasn't seriously making an effort to win. (Certain years in 80s and 90s)

    * whether your affinity for the club declined or picked up (if either) after Griffey and Dunn were traded
    Affinity for the club did not change. I was, however, overjoyed when Griffey was traded away (as I was when he was acquired). Same for Casey. Not so much with Donkey.

    * whether you believe that Jocketty’s penchant for bringing in players with evident character/leadership assets—Rolen, Cabrera, Ludwick, perhaps Gomes—has played a substantial role in the organization’s competitive upturn over the past few years.
    It's played a role. Maybe even a substantial role. Veteran leadership is always needed. But the overwhelming reason for the upturn is the stockpiling of starting pitching and the maturation of young talent from the farm system.

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    Re: Your rooting interest

    I appreciate the initial responses. To those who mentioned a PM . . . I'll message you when I can. Thanks.

  11. #8
    Ripsnort wheels's Avatar
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    The Reds are my family. I cannot say that about any other sport. I find most atheletes to be robotic, one dimensional, banal and self absorbed. Baseball players somehow transcend that. I don't feel dirty, as if I just lowered my IQ by twenty five points after watching a ballgame. Every other sport makes me feel that way.

    Everything about Baseball (rythm, nuance, suspense, frustration, joy, etc) feels so much different and more layered than any other sport.

    Where does my rooting interest come in? Why did I choose the Reds? Why do I stick with them? I can't come up with a definitive answer. Maybe it's because the Reds aren't perfect, like the Cardinals. Somehow I see Jay Bruce as the embodiment of the entire franchise. He's the twenty five year old with the sweet swing and cannon arm. He also swings at balls on his shoetops, and loses track of fly from time to time. But I root like hell for him, because he's a nice kid that works hard. I can say that about most of the home grown players on the current team. I find the warts endearing, and I think it's going to make winning a World Series that much sweeter. A Cardinals fan will never know how that feels.

    The whole Jocketty, Rolen thing? They're great guys and all, and it probably makes for a better time in the clubhouse, but I wouldn't say their presence was a major factor in the club's resurgence. I mean, Paul Wilson, Eric Milton, Joe Randa, and Rich Aurilia were solid, well respected veteran clubhouse guys. How much of an impact did those guys have?
    "We know we're better than this, but we can't prove it." - Tony Gwynn

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  13. #9
    Pitching is the thing WVRedsFan's Avatar
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    Feel free to PM me. I'm a lifer--from birth they say and will be glad to contribute.
    www.ris-news.com
    "You only have to bat a thousand in two things; flying and heart transplants. Everything else you can go 4-for-5."
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  14. #10
    nothing more than a fan Always Red's Avatar
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    I'd love to participate, Lonny, feel free to PM if you wish.

    I didn't choose the Reds, I was born into it. Oh, if the Reds didn't exist, I would have another favorite team, but growing up on the west side of Cincinnati in the late 60's and 70's there was nothing else. I grew up during a time and place where air conditioning was something that maybe mom and dad had in their bedroom via a window unit, so we spent all day, every day, outside playing. And we played baseball. All day, until it got too dark, and then we switched to kick the can.

    My fandom doesn't wax or wane depending upon the players at all. There was a time in my life when things got really busy, with exhaustive training during residency and young children arriving, and I didn't pay quite as much attention to the Reds, but once I had more time to enjoy the game, I was right back, and brought those kids with me.

    So, it doesn't matter- players, front office, ownership, I have been and will always be a Reds fan. The thin red line of players and owners comes and goes, and I root for them all because they have been Reds. I'm not like that with any of the other teams I root for- I am the most fair weather Bengals fan of all time, mostly because I do not have the passion for football that I do for baseball.

    The rhythm of the game with the change of seasons, the beauty of the green grass against the contrast of white home uniforms, and the rich history of the game and all the characters who have participated through the years is what attracts me. My daily life in spring, summer and early fall is mostly configured to when the Reds are playing. I'm always a bit of a mess after the WS is over, as that anchor is gone for another offseason, not quite sure what to do with my evenings.

    At the heart of it, for me, is that it's an entertaining diversion from real life, the best and most enjoyable diversion in my life.

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    Re: Your rooting interest

    Well I've never told this story on here, but I have no problem revealing it. I became a Reds fan in part due to Pete Rose's old vice: gambling. My family was visiting Las Vegas in the early part of the 00s and I decided this one-time Yankee fan growing up needed to get back into baseball. I did my homework and saw that the Reds were off to a decent start but were still considered extreme longshots by the bookmakers, so I told my dad the Reds should be our team and he placed the bet. About 10 minutes later during breakfast my dad didn't feel well, and when we got back up to the room my mom, a nurse, decided to call emergency medical services. And it was a good thing she died, because my dad had a heart attack. So that kind of ruined that Vegas vacation, but while my dad was in the hospital the Reds kept winning and it served as a good distraction for my teenage self. My dad ended up being okay and while the Reds faded as usual, I had become emotionally attached to them for life.

    Onto your questions!:


    * whether your rooting interest in the Reds is at all related to the character, effort, and personalities of the individuals who make up the roster

    I definitely think so, though I sometimes wonder if I am guilty of simply rooting for the laundry. But anytime I see a list of PED suspensions and I don't see any Reds, I feel good inside.

    * whether, and why, your attraction to the team has fluctuated over the seasons

    I think it has, for a few different reasons. By my senior year of high school in 2008 I was out and about a lot more, and suddenly watching a consistently bad baseball team wasn't quite as important as my social life. I moved to North Carolina for college in June 2008 and so that second half of the season and the 2009 season before the Rolen trade just seem like kind of a blur as I was far more focused on my new surroundings and studies than on Kip Wells pitching. I would say though that since 2010 I have watched practically every game because I never want to take the winning for granted after years of irrelevance.

    *whether your affinity for the club declined or picked up (if either) after Griffey and Dunn were traded

    I think it stayed around the same, though there was a certain sense of relief in thinking "Well, now we can rebuild the outfield". Griffey was my absolute favorite player growing up, but after nearly a decade in Red it was an chronically unhappy marriage where both sides knew they'd be better off apart. And Dunn just never stood a chance against the tide of criticism, and took the brunt of fan's anger simply by being 6'6, 285 lbs and striking out.

    * whether you believe that Jocketty’s penchant for bringing in players with evident character/leadership assets—Rolen, Cabrera, Ludwick, perhaps Gomes—has played a substantial role in the organization’s competitive upturn over the past few years.

    I don't typically believe in the 'learning to win' narrative, but I think Rolen was a big part of the Reds turning their performance around. Of course, the improved pitching was the biggest element, but you could just see the lineup after July 31st, 2009, with Rolen in it played significantly better. I think it's more a credit to Jocketty that he avoids problem players despite the potential upside than that he signs good characters/leaders.
    "Since I've been with the Reds in 1989, we've never had a farm system this loaded," Bowden said. "If we were the New York Yankees and had unlimited dollars, we could have traded for Colon, (Jeff) Weaver, Rolen, (Cliff) Floyd, (Kenny) Rogers and Finley and gotten them all -- and still held onto our top five prospects. That's an amazing statement."

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  18. #12
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    * whether your rooting interest in the Reds is at all related to the character, effort, and personalities of the individuals who make up the roster

    Character - yes. For instance, I think Todd Frazier is a character guy and I root hard for him to succeed for the team. I liked when Aaron Harang gave back to the community.

    Effort - Yes, The intensity of a Joey Votto at bat is something that I could watch over and over again.

    Personalities - Again yes, I was raised on the Big Red Machine and loved their personalities -- Tony Perez on the star of the game show with Nuxie was one of my favorite things to listen to; This edition of the Reds has some personality as well, namely Brandon Phillips and Bronson. I like that they are not cut from boring jock cloth.


    * whether, and why, your attraction to the team has fluctuated over the seasons

    No. I used to sit in class in college and figure out Reds lineups of the future that would return the team to its glory days. While it was a tough few years in the mid-80's, my attraction to the team stayed strong. And when I moved out of the area, it also stayed strong even when the team stank.

    * whether your affinity for the club declined or picked up (if either) after Griffey and Dunn were traded

    No, since we couldn't win with them, I had no problem with them leaving.

    * whether you believe that Jocketty’s penchant for bringing in players with evident character/leadership assets—Rolen, Cabrera, Ludwick, perhaps Gomes—has played a substantial role in the organization’s competitive upturn over the past few years.

    Yes, and I'm a member of SABR. Numbers have a role but so does the chemistry of a baseball team. It's a season that runs from February to hopefully the end of October. While teams that don't get along and have bad guys on it (The 86 Mets) sometime win, its not always the team with the most best players that make it far in the playoffs. Veterans who can teach the young guys the way to do things are important to a team -- in fact I think that was part of the problem during the Griffey/Dunn/Kearns years. It wasn't always the talent level, but it was the ethic and way to conduct yourselves over the course of a season. Some of Jocketty's acquistions have helped teach this and I think some of the young players on the team have taken it well and will help re-establish a Reds way for the long term future.
    Hacktastic: The Story of the 2014 Cincinnati Reds

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  20. #13
    Tired of talk. Win! Joseph's Avatar
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    Like others have said, you can message me if you'd like to ask other questions or follow up questions.

    * whether your rooting interest in the Reds is at all related to the character, effort, and personalities of the individuals who make up the roster

    I'm a Reds fan by blood, more or less. My father and my uncle got me into the Reds in the mid-80's when Pete came back. I simply had to know what the big deal was. I started collecting cards and they'd make comments when I got a Red, Hume, Pastore and Soto all come to mind as ones they made comments about. From there I became enamored with Eric Davis. I would play the outfield in sandlot type games and I would slap my thigh with the glove like he did. From there it was Barry and the Nasty Boys, and then the mid-90's and college took me away a bit, then I came back from casual interest to a deeper interest. Then came Griffey, Dunn, and the hope that never was quite realized.

    Yeah I get into certain players, always have, but I root for the Reds. If I get fed up and don't enjoy watching for a while I don't go to another team. It's like marriage and that would be cheating. The Reds are family, its as simple as that. I know they don't see it that way, I'm just the guy that gives them money every season, but for me theres no changing. If I stopped cheering for the Reds, it would mean I'm not cheering for anyone.

    * whether, and why, your attraction to the team has fluctuated over the seasons

    Only a little here and there. When I went to college I didn't have as much time between beer and beer, but I would always check in from time to time. Losing didn't help much in the last decade, but I watched most nights.

    *whether your affinity for the club declined or picked up (if either) after Griffey and Dunn were traded

    Not in particular. The relationship with Griffey was never what any fan wanted I don't think. We wanted The Kid, and due to injuries we didn't get that. Instead we got aloof and moody, even if he was a superstar. We all wanted him to come here and finish off his hall of fame career with another 400 home runs and a carload of World Series titles. So his departure was, bittersweet. It was time, that's all that can be said. I think we all wish Griffey loved Cincinnati as much as we do.

    * whether you believe that Jocketty’s penchant for bringing in players with evident character/leadership assets—Rolen, Cabrera, Ludwick, perhaps Gomes—has played a substantial role in the organization’s competitive upturn over the past few years.

    Yes I do. I love my stats brothers and sisters, but players need to learn how to win sometimes. I'm not saying its all about leadership, I'm just saying its one ingredient in the recipe of success.

    Championships for MY teams in my lifetime:
    Cincinnati Reds - 75, 76, 90
    Chicago Blackhawks - 10, 13
    University of Kentucky - 78, 96, 98, 12
    Cincinnati Bengals - None
    Chicago Bulls - 91, 92, 93, 96, 97, 98

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  22. #14
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    Quote Originally Posted by Always Red View Post

    I didn't choose the Reds, I was born into it. Oh, if the Reds didn't exist, I would have another favorite team, but growing up on the west side of Cincinnati in the late 60's and 70's there was nothing else. I grew up during a time and place where air conditioning was something that maybe mom and dad had in their bedroom via a window unit, so we spent all day, every day, outside playing. And we played baseball. All day, until it got too dark, and then we switched to kick the can.

    My fandom doesn't wax or wane depending upon the players at all. There was a time in my life when things got really busy, with exhaustive training during residency and young children arriving, and I didn't pay quite as much attention to the Reds, but once I had more time to enjoy the game, I was right back, and brought those kids with me.

    So, it doesn't matter- players, front office, ownership, I have been and will always be a Reds fan. The thin red line of players and owners comes and goes, and I root for them all because they have been Reds. I'm not like that with any of the other teams I root for- I am the most fair weather Bengals fan of all time, mostly because I do not have the passion for football that I do for baseball.

    The rhythm of the game with the change of seasons, the beauty of the green grass against the contrast of white home uniforms, and the rich history of the game and all the characters who have participated through the years is what attracts me. My daily life in spring, summer and early fall is mostly configured to when the Reds are playing. I'm always a bit of a mess after the WS is over, as that anchor is gone for another offseason, not quite sure what to do with my evenings.

    At the heart of it, for me, is that it's an entertaining diversion from real life, the best and most enjoyable diversion in my life.
    This brings up an aspect that I didn't get into, but is certainly relevant. I suspect that, for all of the game's romance and aesthetics, there are some fans whose attraction obtains in no small part from the numbers. We love to quantify. We love to parse and figure out. I believe I'm kind of AC/DC in this respect. In any event, I'm certainly open to hearing from folks who are drawn to baseball by the math, if that's the case. I don't want to be deaf to the other side.

  23. #15
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    Re: Your rooting interest

    This is some great stuff, guys, and I haven't even gotten to the private messaging yet. I find it very interesting that, already, two people have traced their Redsness to Rose; that, 24 years after being banned, he remains, in that way, current.

    Love the little personal touches. I think this is gonna work. When the editor talked about what he wanted to add to the narrative, I had my doubts that it was doable. But Redszone to the rescue.

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