Like many Reds fans, these days a whole lot of my life gets in the way of actually watching the games. Whereas early in the season I'd block out the time and allow nothing to break my attention from the on-screen action, around this time of year I find myself catching bits and pieces of the action between doing just about anything else.
So, for your reading enjoyment, I'll give you the recap not of the game in its entirety, but as I saw it.
The Phillies began the game with three runs, which hardly seems fair. Every time I looked up as I diced onions for the guacamole, I rubbed my eyes in disbelief that the top of the first inning was still happening. Note to self: don't look up while dicing onions. Don't rub your eyes either.
The teams decided to forgo the bottom of the first and entirety of the second while I dozed in front of the television. ESPN announcers bantered mundanely about something. I thought that one of them said something about Rich Aurilia showing off great range, but surely I dreamed that.
Their suddenly rising tone shook me awake. They were responding to Ryan Freel singling to center field in the bottom of the third. Somehow the Reds had acquired a run before then, but though Felipe Lopez next drew a walk, Adam Dunn struck out swinging to end the scoring threat and allow me to slip back into unconsciousness.
The Phillies started piling on the runs in the top of the fifth. They were up 5-1 when the clocked chimed 8:00 and it was time to go upstairs and read a book about Clifford the Big Red Dog. As I followed Jon back down the stairs, we played the guess-the-score game.
Me: You think the Phillies are up 12-1 yet?
Jon: Holey crap, the Reds are up.
Me: No they're not.
But it was true. By some miracle, the Reds were up 8-6. Jon made us each a Big Blue Sky to celebrate. We watched as Austin Kearns came up and hit a homer, then we watched it again with Ray Olmedo. This was looking turning into quite a game after all.
Then the appearance of David Weathers. The horrible, horrible appearance of David Weathers. He gave up a couple singles then a home run to bring the Phillies within one. Then he “struck out” Bobby Abreu, who went on to get himself ejected, followed immediately by the manager and some unspecified other person. Things were really looking good then, especially after Weathers struck out Pat Burrell.
But then the walk to Ryan Howard and then the home run to David Bell and then the Phillies had the one-run lead in the top of the ninth with two outs and then the phone rang. It was my brother finalizing the details of our geocaching trip tomorrow. One of the caches we'll be looking for is pirate-themed!
I hung up the phone and the game was over, as were the Reds' far-fetched hopes of a .500 season. At least I caught 40 winks during the game.
I expect tomorrow's game to be equally exciting, with the Reds again spotting the Phillies several runs and making heroic comebacks in between snippets I hear on the radio. Maybe there will even be a pre-game scuffle or general sub-par play: it is a Pirate-theme after all.