I only caught the last couple innings of the game tonight, but they were the perfect ones to see. The CTS told me that when he tuned in with one out in the top of the first to find the Reds already down 4-0, he settled in to watch Bronson Arroyo get his comeuppance (remember, the CTS was kept up all night by that guy, too), entirely without any expectation of the team we love coming back.
But joy of joys! The Current Reds beat The Former Reds on the strength of a Javier Valentín two run homer in the eighth inning. It wasn't Javy's normal home run swing either. Usually he's all about that barrel chest of his, but this time, he uncoiled from head to toe, like he'd be winding up for that home run for a month.
Which is how long it feels like it's been since we've seen the Latin Love Machine really play. After the podcast last night, Jon and I were discussing how the Reds lack charisma this year. We don't have Felipe Lopez complaining about anything, the Adam Dunn/Austin Kearns interaction, or Rich Aurilia saying too much to the press. Griffey isn't talking and Javy isn't playing. Brandon Phillips is the awesome, but he's mostly a sweet kid who says the right things. Plus I bet people aren't anxious to talk to him lest they be blamed for breaking his hit streak.
Ryan Freel may be the only real character on the roster, and there's really only so long the average person can pay strict attention to Freel. It's like trying to track a fly buzzing around the room.
Long story short, it's good to see some of those old Reds characters again, but even nicer to see the smiling side of the scoreboard for a change.