A Beatdown, the Shyster, and a Nasty Sunburn

There he is. Does this make us more than “internet friends”, or do we have to hold hands first?

I live near Cincinnati (Louisville) and go to school near Cincinnati (Lexington), but I’m not a Reds fan. Hence, I rarely go to Cincinnati to watch a game. However, my family and I usually go up for a game or two when the Braves come to town, and that was the case today. My brother and sister-in-law found a 50% discount on seats, and they asked if I wanted to go. I said sure, but I didn’t really get back to them. Therefore, I had to get on later than them and get tickets in the next section over, and because the Reds website is dumb, you can’t pick your seat. Anyway, I went to the game.

And boy am I glad I did — for several reasons. The first is the beatdown the Braves gave the Reds. The final score was 10-2, and it started early for the Braves against Bronson Arroyo (in the three games I have seen in Great American Ballpark, he has pitched all of them). In the first, Kelly Johnson walked (a bad omen), Yunel Escobar doubled (bringing in Johnson), and Chipper Jones singled (bringing in Escobar) to make the score 2-0. Going into the bottom half, Derek Lowe made quick work of the Reds, but he hit Joey Votto. Normally, this isn’t too big of a deal, but the umpire jumps out and warns both benches. Friday night, benches cleared in a beanfest, but I didn’t realize that at the time (I wasn’t home to watch the game).

A half inning later, David Ross singled, Derek Lowe walked (yet another bad omen — Arroyo only walked two but they were bad walks), Johnson hit into a fielder’s choice to erase Lowe, Escobar singled in a run, and Chipper finished it off with a bomb to right-center to make it 6-0. Lowe gave couple back in the bottom of the inning when Alex Gonzalez hit a 2-run shot, but I’m still not sure how that happened considering he seemingly flipped his bat at it and got it out. Oh well, that’s all they got. Lowe settled in, and besides a slightly chaotic fifth in which Arroyo tried to sacrifice Hannigan to third but ended up on second when Ross got greedy and threw to third which caused a rundown which the Braves poorly executed leaving both men on, he was really good going 7 innings. Escobar would add a nice home run in the sixth.

Also worth mentioning is the ejection of Jerry Hairston, Jr. and Dusty Baker. On a borderline third strike pitch, Hairston said the magic word and was ejected. It must have been a special one because it only took about three seconds before he was sent to the showers. Baker came out to argue, was thrown out after he used a special word, and decided to increase his intensity for the pleasure of the fans. After refusing to leave the dugout, he finally did and the patiently-waiting Joey Votto finally got to hit. Fun times.

Besides that, I got to meet the Shyster himself, Craig Calcaterra. He had mentioned on Friday that he was going to the game Saturday, so I shot him an email telling him I would be there as well. So we met up around the sixth/seventh inning and chatted for a minute before the stupid usher told us we were in the way and had to move. While walking back to my seat, my brother and sister-in-law were in my section looking for me, and it seemed as though they wanted to go. So the Shyster and I said good-bye, but my brother and sister-in-law were just coming to make sure I was okay. I was making fine friends with the Braves couple next to me and the Reds fans in front, but oh well. Anyway, I hope to make it up to Cleveland for an Indians game (I’ve never been to Jacobs/Progressive Field) later this summer, so maybe we shall meet again.

Now, I just have a nice sunburn from coming out of hibernation and into the sun for five hours.

Things worth noting:
– I’m more positive towards GAB than before, but I’m not really a fan of it.

– Who in their right mind pays $7.50 for a beer, much less a Bud Select? I guess I could justify it if it was something good, but Bud Select? The genius in front of me bought three. Maybe it’s just that I’m not much of a beer fan, but seriously, $7.50? At GAB?

– There was a bunch of trash on the field during the game (several plastic bags). It’s not the grounds crew’s fault. It’s the fans. If you bring it in, take care of it. Don’t let it get on the playing field.

– There was a nice little video tribute between innings to the 1990 Reds and Jose Rijo for pitching in two of the games, including his retiring of 20 straight. I thought it odd considering the recent scandal, but after thinking about it, I’m glad they did. The 1990 World Series was about much more than Rijo, and even if it wasn’t, Rijo should be commemorated for a fine pitching performance and career, regardless of what he’s done since. In a similar situation and for the same team, Rose, as a player, should be celebrated even if he wasn’t the best off the field.

– Francoeur broke two bats and a third almost took out Lowe. Jason is fuming somewhere in New York.

– Garrett Anderson (don’t really care) and Brian McCann (crap) went on the DL today. As for Anderson, he’s not really worth keeping around, though Matt Diaz really isn’t the answer either considering his poor (at best) defense. As for Brian, I guess it’s good that David Ross is rolling right now. It’s not a good thing that Kotchman is the clean-up hitter.

– If you bring a glove to the game and are over the age of (let’s say) 12, you should catch the damn ball. Five (FIVE!) missed home run balls during BP while wearing gloves. If you miss it with your bare hand, that’s fine, but if you have a glove, god help you. Also, if you’re going for the ball, go for it. Some lady got herself underneath it only to run away at the last second. Luckily, someone else got the ball.

– Would have liked to see Bobby get tossed but didn’t. I’ve seen the wobble and toss happen once in person. Craig mentioned it as well when we talked because there was that play where Arroyo bunted and hell broke loose that Bobby could have argued. As Craig said, it was the perfect day for Bobby to get tossed — hottest day in like 8 months, large lead, and something to %^^&* about, but he restrained himself. Damn.

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