Monthly Archives: March 2009

March 31, 2009

Tom Browning Jailed

Tom Browning's mugshotAccording to the Cincinnati Enquirer, former Reds pitcher Tom Browning was jailed in Florida.

He is being held in the Sarasota County Jail until he is either taken to Polk County, where he owes the child support, or pays the $99,008.36 that he owes.

What I like is that his bond is also set to the exact amount that he owes in child support, so the only way to get out of jail is to pay. Unless he has one of those accursed Monopoly cards handy. Those have been confounding jailers for decades.

March 31, 2009

Astros Improving as Spring Training Ends

Sure, it took a 7-game winning streak to get their win percentage into the 300s, but the Astros do seem to be functioning a lot better heading into the final week of Spring Training.

Of course, if you delve a little deeper, you see a lot of offense being supplied by players with no hopes of making the team, but isn’t that always the way? Players with nothing to lose tend to be much looser.

Despite the blow-up of Mike Hampton yesterday, the Astros are feeling pretty confident in their rotation. Heck, even one sports writer wrote an article about not being able to find any faults with the team. I still can’t tell if it’s serious or not. I mean, I know it’s Spring Training, but this is a team that lost 11 games in a row already this year. That doesn’t sound like a perfect team to me.

Also, in case you missed it, former Red Danny Graves didn’t make the team. Yeah, I thought he’d pitched his way out of baseball, too.

March 30, 2009

Nostalgia Can Bite Me

In case you hadn’t heard, this year is the Reds last year Spring Training in Sarasota, Florida. Cincinnati has been in Sarasota for more than a decade, and in Florida for even longer than that, so you know this change will bring out the maudlin, melodramatic articles decrying the change.

Yup, here’s one now.

[T]here was a tinge of sadness as I walked out through the gates of what Marty Brennaman likes to call “tired old Ed Smith Stadium.” I knew, as did many of the others there that day, that it would be my last Reds spring training game in Florida.

I don’t know why, but this doesn’t strike emotional chord with me that the writer, Howard Wilkinson, probably intended. My response is, “Good. Ed Smith is a terrible place to watch baseball games.” It would be terrible for the Reds to have a *nice* place to play games at.

To be fair, Wilkinson isn’t entirely against the move. He mentions how it was necessary. The complex is old and hasn’t been being maintained in recent years. And when the Reds asked the local government for help giving them a better facility, the answer was no. There’s nothing to do but leave then, and the deal from Arizona is awesome.

However, Wilkinson finishes his article describing a family of 5 who had driven from Indiana to watch a few games. Goodyear, Arizona is almost twice as far away from Cincinnati as Sarasota. And Sarasota is in close proximity to Disney World and beautiful beaches.

Can you picture that family buying five plane tickets and hauling three kids and a week’s worth of luggage to an Arizona suburb where there’s no trace of Mickey, much less Minnie, and the nearest beach is in California?

Don’t count on it.

And that, Reds fans, is reason enough to be sad.

The opportunity to watch major league baseball in a much more intimate setting in a world-class ballpark is reason to be sad? I don’t see it. I’m excited about the new facility next year and plan on catching some games there, if for no other reason than the terrible specter of Dusty Baker’s contract will be that much closer to being killed.

March 25, 2009

Live Chat with a Reds Guy

When I tried to get in on one of these a few years ago, it was total crap, but I’m sure the technology has improved since then. So if you’ve got any questions for a Reds front office guy you wouldn’t recognize if you were filling up at the adjacent pump to his H2, sign in early. There will probably be a line in the virtual waiting room.

Reds VP and Asst. GM Bob Miller Will Answer Your Questions on Thursday, March 26, at 11 AM ET

Bob Miller is in his fourth season in the organization and in his 27th season in professional baseball. On February 10, 2006, he was hired as director of baseball administration by new Reds general manager Wayne Krivsky. He was promoted to assistant general manager on June 13, 2006, and in December 2006 was named vice president and assistant general manager. Miller assists the general manager in all phases of baseball operations, including arbitration cases, contract negotiations, waiver rules and interpretation and departmental budgeting.

Extra, extra, read all about it.

March 25, 2009

The One Year We Don’t Go To Spring Training

Jose Tabata, not kidnapping childrenFor the first time in years, the RHM family is unable to attend Spring Training, and this happens.

The Pirates acquired Jose Tabata, a top Yankees prospect, last year in the Xavier Nady trade. Apparently, during the off-season, Jose married Amaila. And Amaila has been arrested for kidnapping a 2 month-old baby. WTF?

Jose hasn’t been implicated and seems to be as surprised as everyone. Hopefully that remains the case.

My favorite part of the article is this, though.

Amaila Tabata Pereira was found with 10-pound Sandra Cruz-Francisco standing at a street corner in Bradenton, Florida.

Now, I haven’t cracked open my Kidnapper’s Bible in a few years–heck, there’s probably even a revised version by now–but that doesn’t seem like the best way to get away with a kidnapping. Maybe she was waiting for the kidnapper’s getaway bus.