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Thread: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

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    Pitching is the thing WVRedsFan's Avatar
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    The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    As many of you know, I am one of the biggest Narron bashers on this board. Sometimes it embarrasses me and I quit posting for awhile because the sing-song negativity of my posts are counterproductive to the board. I know that. I haven't post but a couple of times in the game threads and tried to be positive in those and have just stayed away. Some say I sweat the stuff too much and others negative rep me. No matter, I can tell when I'm harping on the same stuff and I know when to keep it inside. I've been doing that.

    But the last two nights, the camera has panned toward Jerry Narron. The jaw is tense and it looks like he's gritting his teeth so much that he's going to explode. If you don't have a little sympathy for him, you're not human. It must be very frustrating. Every move he makes backfires. A lot of it is his own doing, but a lot of it is just bad luck. He has so much faith in his veterans that he doesn't use his head sometimes. He's so paranoid about Edwin's throwing errors, even when behind, he pulls him for defensive purposes. Tongiht it was for Freel and Farney immediately missed a ground ball. Go figure. No matter who he brings in from the pen, they get bombed. It makes no difference who he picks, it's like gasoline on a fire. Every time. Post a new lineup and somebody fails. Unlike Tony LaRusa or Joe Torre, who seem to make the right decisions 60+% of the time, Jerry is down there at 40%. He knows baseball, but bad decisions just flow from him. Put Stanton in and three bloops fall for hits. Bring in Saarloos and the lead is given up. Rely on Coffee and homeruns happen. He's got to be talking in his sleep.

    I don't care who it is, this has to be a tough situation. Some guys just make the right decision on instinct. Jerry does not. And I think he knows that his time is just about up and he can't figure out for the life of him why. Someday, somewhere, Jerry Narron will look back on this and wonder why everything went wrong. No one deserves for everything to go wrong no matter what you do. It's not only not fair, it's bloody unlucky.

    Jerry Narron must wonder why, when he took out his pitcher last night to pitch hit Norris Hopper with two out, it all didn't work out. He has to wonder why that shot down the third base line wasn't fielded by Freel. He has to wonder why everything goes wrong late in a game. Maybe it has something to do with his pick for pitching coach. I don't know. My Dad used to say that folks like Jerry were snakebit. No matter how much they cared and no matter how logical their decisions were in thier own mind, it wouldn't work out. It's unfortunate that we're dealing with that kind of guy for the third manager in a row. Boone and Miley weren't especially likeable, but Narron is a likeable guy. You want to see him do well, but he can't.

    If I had one wish for Jerry Narron it would be to do better, make better decisions, but I fear it's too late for that. the owner has appeared on the field to send a message to the fans. the obvious choice is to change the head man as it has been forever. I've gone on record as saying that the Reds will never contend for a championship with Jerry Narron at the helm and I haven't wavered from that thought. But how in the world can anyone make the wrong decision so much? It's just not normal and for that, all my sympathy goes out to this man.
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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    I feel for all of them, even when you know some drastic moves have to be made:

    CINCINNATI (AP) David Weathers knows as well as anybody how bad Cincinnati's bullpen has been this season. The frustration boiled over Tuesday night after rookie reliever Brad Salmon (0-1) gave up a 6-5 lead and the veteran Weathers allowed a ninth-inning run that proved to be the difference in Houston's 7-6 win over the Reds.

    "We know we're blowing games," Weathers said in a slightly raised voice while responding to a reporter's question. "It hurts us personally. It's more frustrating for us than for anybody."

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    Member redsrule2500's Avatar
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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    Quote Originally Posted by BCubb2003 View Post
    I feel for all of them, even when you know some drastic moves have to be made:

    CINCINNATI (AP) David Weathers knows as well as anybody how bad Cincinnati's bullpen has been this season. The frustration boiled over Tuesday night after rookie reliever Brad Salmon (0-1) gave up a 6-5 lead and the veteran Weathers allowed a ninth-inning run that proved to be the difference in Houston's 7-6 win over the Reds.

    "We know we're blowing games," Weathers said in a slightly raised voice while responding to a reporter's question. "It hurts us personally. It's more frustrating for us than for anybody."
    Sucks, really sucks. It's really too bad that most of the blame can be focused on a single group of guys. I mean, do you think they are kinda looked at as the broken leg by the whole team?
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    Member Eric_Davis's Avatar
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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    The poor guy has been having to use Weathers and Coffey as his best guys for three years now. Weathers has been good this year, but he doesn't pitch the 8th inning. Coffey was OK last year, but.....anyway......I still feel when Bray gets healthy, he's going to lock up the 8th inning spot, and then be pushed back to the 7th inning when Guardado gets back and Weathers will do the 8th. Also, in the next 14-21 days, we might see either Pelland or McBeth replace one of the ineffective, older pitchers.
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    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    Good post, WV. I absolutely ache for the guy. I think he's better than what this team's performing. You mentioned "faith in his veterans", but I think with the bullpen, it's faith in most of them, young or old. Look how much he's stuck with Coffey. Virtually none of them are performing and it's a shame because this team is better than its record shows. So many of these lost games were winnable, but some portion of the team let us down.

    Frankly, I'm hoping Castellini has the fortitude to hang with Jerry & Wayne. I think we'll be the better for it. This revolving door in the manager's seat needs to stop.

    And that picture of Dick Pole this morning - he looked like his head might explode.

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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    This has been, and will continue to be, an indictment of talent (or lack thereof) rather than managerial skills...

    Unfortunately, bullpen implosions resonate shockwaves of negativity exponentially greater than any other team weakness...this negativity creates a climate of impending doom...thus the self-fulfilling prophesy...and the resulting upper management response will be to make a change with the manager...

    Narron's only hope is a quick AND successful return for the TRADE GUYS and Easy Eddie...if Bray, Maj and Guardado can steady the ship it will calm the seas for a while...

    IMHO, a movement to the Medlocks and McBeth's of the world will be the death-knell to Narron's regime, for better or worse...not that it's not an appropriate step to take (especially if the Brewers continue to run away and hide)...


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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    This has been, and will continue to be, an indictment of talent (or lack thereof) rather than managerial skills...
    Talent is God Given: be humble.
    Fame is man given: be thankful.
    Conceit is self given: be careful.

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    Member Marc D's Avatar
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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    I still want him fired on a proffessional level but like WV said, if you don't feel for the guy on a personal level your just not human. He obviously cares that we suck and by all accounts is a good guy.

    That said, Narron has made enough bad moves with what little talent he has, consistently enough and over a long enough period of time to warrant his firing imo.

    I felt bad on a personal level for Boone and Miley too(well not so much Boone) but I sure don't want them back.

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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    Nice thread.
    It's pretty easy to make an argument that Narron may be the best reds manager since Johnson. Yeah, it's kind of like being the tallest midget in the circus, but the only real competition comes from McKeon.

    A list of Narron's good qualities....

    Narron clearly has the support of the players and the front office. That matters.

    The players play hard for Narron, they don't always play smart, but for the most part they do play hard.

    I can complain about Narron's veteran fixation, but ...You know what? Rich A played well last year. Jeff Conine is playing well this year. While I may chuckle at the PT those guys get....It's not PT that's been squandered.

    He's learning....After riding Arroyo and Harang last year like rodeo ponies all year long. We are to May and you can count the number of starts where the starter went over 105 pitches on one hand. That's a real change in his approach.

    Likewise the 3 headed catching monster has vanished with a more sensible roster formation. He IS learning.

    Josh Hamilton. By all accounts a good bit of the reason the reds have Hamilton has to do with Narron's confidence that the young man was a valuable property. The ability to get the right guys on your roster and the right guys on the field matters a whole lot.

    Neutral things about Narron

    While I certainly feel Narron deserves some of the blame for what happened to the Lizard last year, reds pitchers have to know to speak up when they are hurt.

    He bunts too much for my taste...but that's true of 70% of the managers in the majors, so I can't really hold him responsible for it.

    Edwin...It's tempting to right this off as part of the veteran fixation, but sooner or later you have to stop making excuses for Edwin's throwing and hope the young man gets it together. He has great range. They need his right handed bat in the lineup. ...he just has to get it done with his arm.

    The bad

    The new lineup on a daily basis. I know that's part of how the game is played these days, so again I'm not convinced a change will make a difference.

    The bullpen. I'm pretty much on record that I believe that instead of the bullpen torching Narron, that Narron has torched the guys in the pen. He did the same thing last year. Two GM's have gone out of there way to assemble pretty much the same style of bullpen. I have to believe that they were getting the guys that Narron wanted. This organization did so much right in the off season that I held honest hope that this would be fixed as well. I thought maybe Pole would put in a word for the guys down there or that maybe if he didn't have to moonlight for Ruhle that Hume would step up too. It just hasn't happened. 5 guys from the pen warm up just about every night. That just cannot succeed. It's weighing down the team. Costing them games and pretty much undoing all the good things Jerry has going for him.
    "Even a bad day at the ballpark beats the snot out of most other good days. I'll take my scorecard and pencil and beer and hot dog and rage at the dips and cheer at the highs, but I'm not ever going to stop loving this game and this team and nobody will ever take that away from me." Roy Tucker October 2010

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    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    Quote Originally Posted by dfs View Post
    Nice thread.
    It's pretty easy to make an argument that Narron may be the best reds manager since Johnson. Yeah, it's kind of like being the tallest midget in the circus, but the only real competition comes from McKeon.

    A list of Narron's good qualities....

    Narron clearly has the support of the players and the front office. That matters.

    The players play hard for Narron, they don't always play smart, but for the most part they do play hard.

    I can complain about Narron's veteran fixation, but ...You know what? Rich A played well last year. Jeff Conine is playing well this year. While I may chuckle at the PT those guys get....It's not PT that's been squandered.

    He's learning....After riding Arroyo and Harang last year like rodeo ponies all year long. We are to May and you can count the number of starts where the starter went over 105 pitches on one hand. That's a real change in his approach.

    Likewise the 3 headed catching monster has vanished with a more sensible roster formation. He IS learning.

    Josh Hamilton. By all accounts a good bit of the reason the reds have Hamilton has to do with Narron's confidence that the young man was a valuable property. The ability to get the right guys on your roster and the right guys on the field matters a whole lot.

    Neutral things about Narron

    While I certainly feel Narron deserves some of the blame for what happened to the Lizard last year, reds pitchers have to know to speak up when they are hurt.

    He bunts too much for my taste...but that's true of 70% of the managers in the majors, so I can't really hold him responsible for it.

    Edwin...It's tempting to right this off as part of the veteran fixation, but sooner or later you have to stop making excuses for Edwin's throwing and hope the young man gets it together. He has great range. They need his right handed bat in the lineup. ...he just has to get it done with his arm.

    The bad

    The new lineup on a daily basis. I know that's part of how the game is played these days, so again I'm not convinced a change will make a difference.

    The bullpen. I'm pretty much on record that I believe that instead of the bullpen torching Narron, that Narron has torched the guys in the pen. He did the same thing last year. Two GM's have gone out of there way to assemble pretty much the same style of bullpen. I have to believe that they were getting the guys that Narron wanted. This organization did so much right in the off season that I held honest hope that this would be fixed as well. I thought maybe Pole would put in a word for the guys down there or that maybe if he didn't have to moonlight for Ruhle that Hume would step up too. It just hasn't happened. 5 guys from the pen warm up just about every night. That just cannot succeed. It's weighing down the team. Costing them games and pretty much undoing all the good things Jerry has going for him.
    I don't think Narron's been all bad. I agree about Conine. So far he has alleviated RedsZone's fears about playing him anywhere but 1st. He may have played a game in LF or RF but otherwise it's been 1st base against lefties and that's that.

    With the "performance" of this bullpen, you could see how Narron would be sorely tempted to let Harang and Arroyo throw 130-150 pitches. Fortunately he has resisted that temptation. Perhaps he's not riding them so hard because they signed contract extentions and are probably going to be here for the next few years. Lohse, I'd ride into the ground if I were Narron. If he's pitching well and has 120 pitches in the 6th or 7th inning, keep him in there. I say that because I don't think he'll be here after this year. He may not even be here after July. Let his arm be someone else's problem.

    Having 3 catchers isn't a problem. Having 3 catchers, two of whom couldn't hit water if they fell out of a boat, is a problem. Javy's pretty much a glorified pinch hitter. Now Narron's worried that either Javy or Ross will get hurt in a game and he won't have any catchers so he must have a 3rd catcher just in case that happens. Kind of like we have a closer even though we don't need him. 3 catchers isn't necessarily a bad idea. But they need to bring more than 1 skill to the table.

    I think he's handled Josh wonderfully but I don't know any managers who would have used him differently. At the very least he was an outstanding defensive OFer so he could be used for defensive purposes but his hitting got him more opportunities to play and Jr.'s problems also helped him out.
    You're right that the pitchers deserve blame but it's a fine line going back to when they started playing pro ball. You complain about an injury and you get released or benched. Plus you don't know if it's just pain or an injury. Young players are particularly vulnerable here. You want to be a man and tough it out but if you go on the DL, you are an afterthought and maybe you're young and strong enough to pitch through it.

    If he bunted with guys like Freel and Hopper - guys who you know can lay a bunt down - that would be better. But asking guys like Ross or EE to bunt is like asking Juan Castro to hit a home run. It'd be nice if they could do it but the odds on each happening aren't very good.

    I have no evidence to back this up but I think if Narron put his arm around EE's shoulder and tell him he's his 3rd baseman come hell or high water, no defensive replacements, no double switches, no sitting against a tough righty, he's in there every day unless he gets injured that EE would respond with the glove and the bat. It's hard to do your job when someone's looking over your shoulder all the time waiting to pounce on you when you make a mistake. Look how Brandon Phillips responded last year when he was told he was the everyday 2nd baseman. Condfidence is something young players need. Everybody's different. Maybe EE doesn't respond to Narron's confidence in him but if you really believe this kid is your 3rd baseman - in an organization that has a history of not producing 3rd basemen - for the next several years, then they should act like it.

    Narron is handicapped by the fact that he doesn't have a right handed power hitter in the middle of the lineup. That's not his fault. But it's like he can't use the same lineup after a loss. Plus he puts hitters in odd places in the lineup. Saturday Hamilton is on base several times which is good. Problem is he had Ross and Harang hitting after him which wasn't so good. Fortunately Freel knocked him in a couple of times but relying on Ross and Harang to drive you in is a losing proposition.
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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    I don't feel bad for them. I feel they need to go away and never come back.

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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    concur they need to go to Russ Nixon, vern Rapp, Don Heffner land

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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    Quote Originally Posted by Chip R View Post
    Plus he puts hitters in odd places in the lineup.
    Everyday regardless of the production positive or negative, everyday.

    The same mind set might be a contributing factor with the bullpen.

    Maybe he needs to stop teaching, stop talking, stop thinking, stop tinkering and just let his players play the game.
    Last edited by Spring~Fields; 05-09-2007 at 01:04 PM.

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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    Quote Originally Posted by Chip R View Post

    I have no evidence to back this up but I think if Narron put his arm around EE's shoulder and tell him he's his 3rd baseman come hell or high water, no defensive replacements, no double switches, no sitting against a tough righty, he's in there every day unless he gets injured that EE would respond with the glove and the bat. It's hard to do your job when someone's looking over your shoulder all the time waiting to pounce on you when you make a mistake.
    This is my favorite part of your post, Chip, and I couldn't agree more. I'm not in that dugout but EE just looks to me like the kind of player who takes it really hard when he makes a mistake or gets benched. Leave him in there and let him play through the rough spots. He's too talented to do otherwise, IMO.
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    Re: The Last Two Night I Felt Sorry for Narron

    Quote Originally Posted by WVRedsFan View Post
    He's so paranoid about Edwin's throwing errors, even when behind, he pulls him for defensive purposes.
    I think some fail to understand these types of moves which makes the criticism of Narron unfair at times. EE was not removed last night for defensive purposes. Freel was leading off the 9th inning. Hamilton had pinch-hit for Ross and he wanted to keep his bat in the lineup. And since Ross was out and Valentin had pinch-hit for the pitcher, Valentin had to stay in to catch. Being down a run, Narron wasn't going to take out the bats of Dunn or Griffey with the top of the lineup due up, so the choice was made to move Freel to 3b and Hamilton to CF. Sure, given what we know now he could have gone a different route, but at the time it was a sound decision.


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