Hey, I just wanted to chime in with my take on the trades. I like Cormier and Lohse. It isn't exactly what I wanted, but sometimes guys suprise us (Lohse) and keep performing well into their careers (Cormier). They are good puzzle pieces, not great, but good and this should give us the chance that we need to try to get to the postseason. I can remember the feeling of the pennant race in 99' and it feels good to be in one right now. It just feels right. Wayne is all about winning this year and it is refreshing, but it also feels like he has a good grip on the future (ie. his handling of the Homer situation). Let's enjoy this.

The trade deadline is out of the way. Time for our boys to settle in and do what they do best. JR, Dunn and the boys may have to pull a little more slack, but now they have the bullpen behind them to finish these wins. There is still plenty enough offense on this team to win games. We had a bit of a letdown in Milwaukee, but we are at home now and it is time to put the Dodgers out of contention like the good ole days.

I also have to touch on the attendance issue. I am tired of the local and sometimes national media challenging our commitment to this team. Of all people they should understand how tough it is out there the media should get it. I graduated from college last March and it was one of the greatest days of my life, but work has not been easy to find. I have been lucky enough to have a great support system around me that has helped keep me going the last year. I have been to as many as 25-30 games in 99' to 10 each in the last few. I am at about five this year and that has been with some financial inventiveness. This is not about support for the Reds it is about hard times we are going through. There are just as many fans or more than there have always been, but it is much harder to get from Columbus, Lexington, or in my case Dayton to the ballpark than it used to be. I just got a new job and I am planning on using some of that hard earned money to get down to the park and watch our Reds. If you can do it too, but if you can't watch on TV or listen on the radio. Your voices will still be heard. Don't let the Cincinnati media convince you that you will not. There are many others who will speak for you, count me as one.