I started following the Reds in 2001 at the age of 12. 9 years later, I have yet to see them have a winning season and there doesn't appear to be an end in site.
I can remember the first game I ever attended in Cincinnati. I had seen the Reds play at Wrigley before, but there was nothing like that first game at Riverfront. Sure, it was really half of Riverfront and it was named Cinergy, but it was like no other. Sean Casey hit a HR and they set off fireworks and the roof caught on fire. The Reds, and Bruce Chen, lost to Barry Zito with the help of a great play by Eric Byrnes.
Out of all the losing seasons, this one may be the worst. The highlight of my Reds fandom is the 80-82 year. I remember at the beginning of the year I thought that offense was unstoppable, Dunn, Griffey, Kearns, Lopez, Phillips, Edwin, Ross, Freel, even as much crap as I gave him Aurilia produced for the Reds. We would run lineups out there that 1-8 could go deep on any pitch. Then we made the trade, then we went out West, and as George would say "you know the story."
This one is the worst. Lets be honest, the Reds are pretty bad. They can't hit, and they really can't pitch anymore either. Since sometime in May they are one of the 5 worst teams in baseball. Watching this team is giving me zero joy, it's just no fun anymore. There is no scoring, and the games are boring.
However, I found myself cheering like an idiot for the Astros tonight. Once they won, I had myself convinced if the Reds could just get 1 in LA and head into the off day tomorrow only 3 back in the loss column we still had a shot. I watched the game frusterated as ever. I was watching the game with my brother, and I literally didn't say a word for a good hour after the Manny slam. It's just frusterating. Part of me doesn't want to root for this team anymore.
But I digress. I just looked at the standings to see that the Reds, somehow, are still only 4 back in the loss column, despite having 4 teams ahead of them. By the time we play on Friday I'll have myself convinced a good series in Chicago will have them back in the race. And you can bet on Sunday I'll be in the bleachers with my Reds gear on.
I know there are other Reds fans feeling just as bad if not worse than I do (hi OBM), and you aren't alone. One day we'll be rewarded, I hope.