While much of the country spent the weekend frantically shopping for the rest of the people on their holiday gift list and wondering just how long much longer they’ll have to give all the credit to Santa before their wide-eyed, innocent, grabby, Halo 3-obsessed children can take the news without falling into an hour-long shrieking fit, Reds fan lined up for the annual Redsfest. The Crack Technical Staff and I were in attendance to drink beer and make smart alec remarks.
“Well, Bobby, I played Neifi so much because he had guts,” Dusty Baker explained while fielding softball questions from children in a charming PR opportunity.
The Reds unveiled the latest development in protective equipment technology. Rumor has it that Ken Griffey, Jr. will be the first to be entirely covered in balloons to provide a protective cushion in case of falls. His range isn’t expected to decrease much.
He’s no Pokey Reese: A young Cincinnati fan tries on a Reds cap at a somewhat askew angle.
The souvenir shop featured the Touch line of clothing that will never look as good on you as it does on Alyssa Milano.
I like Tom Shearn.
I’m skipping the joke to tell the real story of this photo. Phillips was leaving the autograph area after completing his time when he comes upon a group of fans in the hall. Even after an hour of signing, he tried to get the security guys to let him sign. Too bad they ushered him away.
Why do guys always need to compare bats?
The Screaming Mimes closed out the event and had people literally dancing in the aisles. Sure, they looked a little crazy dancing that way, but credit to the Mimes for inspiring them.
My self-appointed task of updating you each week on player transactions in the NLC is made somewhat easier this week by the fact that RHM has already given us the lowdown on the Astros signing Kaz Matsui, and Zeldink has already given us the scoop on the Rule 5 draft.
The Pirates reacted to the news on Monday 12/3 by claiming IF Josh Wilson off waivers from Tampa Bay. They also claimed RHP Ty Taubenheim off waivers from the Blue Jays, and DFA’ed IF Brad Eldred and RHP Brian Rogers to make room on their roster for Wilson and Taubenheim.
The Brewers signed RHP David Riske to a three-year contract. They DFA’ed OF Laynce Nix to make room on the roster for Riske.
The Reds traded OF Buck Coats to the Toronto Blue Jays for a player to be named later or cash (but keep reading), released IF Jorge Cantu, signed free agent RHPs Jon Adkins and Justin Lehr to minor league contracts with invitations to spring training.
Thursday 12/6 was the Rule 5 draft, aside from the transactions resulting from that, the Cubs decided to forego that process and simply went out and bought themselves RHP Tim Lahey from the Tampa Bay Rays for cash.
On Friday 12/7:
The Reds acquired RHP Justin James from the Blue Jays, completing Wednesday’s deal involving Buck Coats and making this the shortest (two days) PTBNL deal I can remember.
The Pirates and Brewers worked an intradivision trade, with the Brew Crew getting RHP Salomon Torres while the Pirates obtained RHPs Marino Salas and Kevin Roberts. Torres promptly indicated that because of his family’s roots in suburban Pittsburgh, he may elect to retire rather than report to Milwaukee. That might be fine with Pirates fans – the Pirates’ newsgroup on Usenet announced the trade using the following subject line: “YeeHaw Torres traded…….”
Today (Sunday 12/9) we receive word that the Astros have added IF Mark Loretta to their 40-man roster after he accepted the team’s offer of salary arbitration, while Trever Miller declined arbitration. There’s also a report that the Brewers have a deal in place with Eric Gagne, and another report that Japanese free-agent Kosuke Fukudome, apparently regarded as one of the best outfielders in Japanese pro ball, has decided not to move to the Yomiuri Giants and will sign with a major league team instead.
And here I thought Fukudome was a new fully-enclosed stadium being built by a team that hates its fans….