Daily Archives: July 23, 2012

July 23, 2012

Meeting Kirk Herbstreit

A week ago, the doorbell rang and I made it to the front door in time to see the UPS truck driving away. Under the welcome mat lay an envelope that I wasn’t expecting. I opened it to find a letter:

Congratulations! Your name has been selected as a Grand Prize Winner in the Kellogg’s/Marsh – Kirk Herbstreit Sweestakes!

I wish they'd had fried chicken in themAt first I thought it might be a scam, since you always get those email scams that claim you won an international lottery you didn’t enter, and I didn’t enter this contest either. But upon reading the official contest rules (also included), I discovered that everyone who bought any Kellogg’s product from Marsh (a local grocery store chain here in Indiana) and used their rewards card at checkout was automatically entered. And we had, indeed, recently bought some Pop Tarts.

So, with just 2 days’ notice, I made plans to head to the Marsh headquarters during the middle of the workday on Wednesday for a lunch and meet-and-greet with a guy I had to Google to find out who he was (he’s a football analyst on ESPN, btw).

This is where they teach advanced bagging techniquesThere had been 100 grand prize winners, and each was entitled to bring a guest, so they had seating and box lunches for up to 200 in Training Room B.

Trouble was:
1) they did only give the 2 days’ notice to the winners,
2) the event was during the time of day when most people are working, and
3) I probably wasn’t the only one who (a) thought it was a scam, or (b) didn’t know who Kirk Herbstreit was.

So my son and I sat with the 5 other people who showed up and stared at the uneaten 193 box lunches. At least there wasn’t a fight over the ham sandwiches.

They were running late, and we’d arrived a touch early, so we had plenty of time to get bored in Training Room B (probably like people usually are in training rooms). Plus, the a/c was acting up, so it was a real relief when they finally led us to an auditorium decked out in Cheez-Its and other fine products.

Herbstreit spoke a little on some rule change in college football and the whole Penn State thing, and then took questions. Finally we got to go up and get autographs. I used my autograph to get something for my brother, who requested this photo–it’s a reaction shot after the old dude in the middle said the F-word on live t.v.

While we were waiting in line, my son and I were bantering about how many boxes of Cheez-Its were on the stage (211), the guy doing “crowd” control gifted us a box to have autographed. I cannot tell you how much this made my son’s day. At the end of it all, despite the waiting, the sub-par cole slaw in the lunch, the Q&A about a sport he knows nothing about, he still says “that was awesome!” thanks to receiving a free box of cheese crackers.

After dropping off a couple matchbooks and inviting him to check out the blog (Herbstreit is a Reds fan, as it turns out), we rescued one more box lunch from the mountain and headed back home. I’d tell you to be on the lookout for my picture in Marsh or Kellogg’s promotional materials, except they didn’t take any pictures of us, and they didn’t ask for my publicity release forms.

Remember these?Instead, just think of me the next time you see an autographed box of Cheez-Its. And if you’re Kirk Herbstreit, pulling out my matchbook and visiting the site for the first time: welcome! and don’t let your kids play with the matches.

July 23, 2012

Game 95: Brewers 1, Reds 2

W: Cueto (12-5) L: Fiers (3-4) S: Chapman (17)


Though the Brewers struck first with a run in the top of the third inning yesterday, the Reds answered with two in the bottom of the inning, and that’s all it would take to wrap up the sweep of Milwaukee.

Johnny Cueto got his 12th win of the season by putting in 7.0 innings of 1-run work. He did see a lot of runners on base, giving up 8 hits and an intentional walk, but they were conveniently distributed among his 9 strikeouts to keep the men from the crossing the plate.

Logan Ondrusek worked the eighth inning and didn’t allow a run despite adding 2 more hits to the Astros’ total. Aroldis Chapman closed it out. He didn’t give the Astros any more hits, but he did contribute a couple more strikeouts to give all the fans at GABP pizza and ice cream.

Brandon Phillips continued to tear it up, going 2-for-3 with a sac fly that brought in a run in the third. Wilson Valdez also had a multi-hit night, going 2-for-4 with the other RBI in the third. It wasn’t exactly a show (there wasn’t a single home run by either team, which is the first time there has been a homer-less game in GABP in 74 straight games), but it was still a win.

The win brings the Reds’ record to 55-40. That’s a season-high 15 games over .500, and a good thing, too, with the Pirates still only half a game back. The Reds travel to Houston tonight to take on the Astros at 8:05 p.m. Mat Latos (RHP, 7-3, 4.33 ERA) faces off against Wandy Rodriguez (LHP, 7-8, 3.75 ERA).

July 23, 2012

Everything coming up roses for Reds fans

Last Game
The Reds completed a sweep of the Milwaukee Brewers yesterday afternoon when they won 2-1. The Reds are 8-2 since the All-Star break, having swept both division rivals they’ve played since then.

Next Game
Tonight the Reds head to Houston to take on the Astros. On Friday, the Astros traded RHP Brandon Lyon, LHP J.A. Happ, and RHP David Carpenter to the Blue Jays in exchange for RHP Francisco Cordero and OF Ben Francisco, four minor leaguers, and a PTBNL. They did not, however, trade away Wandy Rodriguez (LHP, 7-8, 3.75 ERA), who is facing off against Mat Latos (RHP, 7-3, 4.33 ERA) tonight. First pitch at 8:05 p.m.

A Great Weekend to be a Reds Fan
Cincinnati fans couldn’t ask for too much more than they got this weekend. While Barry Larkin was giving his entertaining, if somewhat lengthy, Hall of Fame induction speech, the Reds were busy getting themselves a season-high 15 games over .500. Plus Joey Votto is off his crutches and is that much closer to coming back.

What to Say to Sound Smart at the Water Cooler
Nobody on either team hit a home run in yesterday’s game. It’s the first time GABP has failed to yield a homer to either team since July 29, 2011 when the Giants were in town. That’s 74 games in a row with a home run.