The Sun is setting on Austin Kearns

It’s become a routine every night that we check box scores to look for Austin Kearns’ name to see what he did. It’s been that way for a few years now ever since we thought he was the savior of Cincinnati Reds baseball back in 2003 alongside Adam Dunn.

We’ve always wished Austin the very best even though things didn’t work out in Cincinnati. Now we feel like we’re slowing down to see a highway wreck each time we look at his line score. He hasn’t been appearing in the Nationals’ box scores much lately. It’s not because he’s hurt. It’s because he’s on the verge of not having a job as a baseball player anymore.

The most hideous stat we could find on Kearns comes from this anecdote:

He looked better early this spring after some winter work with hitting coach Rick Eckstein to make some adjustments to his swing. Kearns won the starting right-field job and drove in 13 runs in his first 21 games, leading Acta to hope the Nationals had an improved Kearns to add to their rejuvenated lineup.

But the adjustments have tailed off, and Kearns’ numbers are even worse than last year’s. His value over replacement player (VORP) rating is minus-3.8, meaning the Nationals could have scored 3.8 more runs this season with a readily available replacement player off the street than they could have with Kearns in the lineup. The figure is 734th among 844 players ranked by Baseball Prospectus, just behind Wil Nieves (who is making $445,000 this year) and ahead of only Ronnie Belliard on the Nationals’ roster.

This is all sad. We remember watching Kearns for the first month and half plus of the 2003 season. He was like Manny Ramirez at the plate. He was driving everything. Hitting with power to all fields, murdering with runners in scoring position. Killing lefties, righties, there was no way to pitch to him. And suddenly, little by little; it all went away.

It’s time to face up to the facts that the Kearns we saw (and some Reds fans will remember in that brief period) isn’t coming back. Let’s not forget this guy hit .315 as a rookie in 2002 after being touted as the 1st round prospect that he was. Injuries and time have caught up to him. It’s sad to watch a player flounder out a career this way. But Austin Kearns is not long for this game anymore.
Nationals Insider: Determining Kearns’ Value [Washington Times]

Jerry Crasnick takes a look at what the Cleveland Indians lost in that ALCS game 7 of 2007. “So here’s where things stand: The Indians, a fashionable AL Central pick in March, are 12 games behind first-place Detroit and last in the division. Shapiro can’t make it through a day without answering another question about manager Eric Wedge’s job security, and he began the process of selling off short-term assets for long-term value when he traded infielder Mark DeRosa to St. Louis for reliever Chris Perez on Saturday.” [ESPN]

Reds post another statement win on a Sunday

The Reds knocked 15 hits around Progressive Field and didn’t make an error in taking the rubber match and final of two games of the series against the Cleveland Indians to close out Interleague Play.

Brandon Phillips celebrated his 28th birthday with 3 runs, 3 hits, and 3 RBI. Johnny Gomes homered. Ramon Hernandez had 3 hits and 3 RBI and Jay Bruce added two hits.

Micah Owings threw pretty well. Owings went 6 innings, allowing only 1 first inning earned run and walking four. He is now 5-8 on the season.

The Reds are once again at .500 for the season, and they’re just 2 and 1/2 games out. That deficit is deceiving, as they are closer to last place then first. It’s bizarro world in the NL Central right now.

Makes you think a little bit

The following was a post on a Reds message board I frequent. It makes us think we’re being duped possibly. Maybe we are drinking some strange Kool-aid. Have a look for yourself:

In a “what have you done for me lately” society the Reds haven’t done squat. They’re content with sitting on their hands and feeling sorry for themselves playing the “injury card” or whatever other excuse they can come up with that hasn’t been used in a while.

The facts are clear and simple to understand.

Fact: The Reds cheap on the draft almost every season.

Fact: The Reds cheap on free agency almost every season.

Fact: The Reds tremendoucly over-value their own prospects almost every season.
What does this lead to? MEDIOCRITY.

Bob (Castellini) talked the talk, but he hasn’t walked the walk. He’s just another owner in a long line of Cincy owners who’s bark is bigger than his bite. Yet, we watch all the games and fork out our hard earned dollars all the while saying “Please sir? May I have another?”

It really is enough already. Yeah, this team is .500. However, this team never had any chance of competing. It hasn’t in 10 years….and that was a fluke. We’re the Royals…The Pirates…it’s a business…it’s profitable….that’s America. I applaud Bob for that. He has what we want and he’s worked hard to get it. Good for him. But let’s not dillude ourselves into thinking that we’re something that we’re not.

What really grinds my gears is the folks that genuinely think this team has a shot…and they argue and they argue all the while ignoring facts and common sense. Common sense…..that’s what’s lacking from society today. It ain’t rocket science.

I’m drunk….have a good night.

Does this guy have a point? Obviously he does or I wouldn’t re-post.

All Glory on a Saturday Night in Cleveland

Homer Bailey said it best, that his teammates had a few big blasts for him to give him a lead, and played good defense behind him.

The opening shot came from Jay Bruce, a line drive to right field off Toma Ohka. The Reds have owned Ohka in the past. Look at what Adam Dunn has done in his career off the man. We knew the Reds would have success hitting off this guy (who we cannot believe is still in a big league rotation). Cleveland fans wanna know why they’re having a rough season. Toma Ohka is starting games for you guys.

Bailey had all the gusto of a competitor. We didn’t need anything special. He had enough to get his first big league win since September 30, 2007. It was the fifth win of his career. Hopefully with 220 or more left in a Reds uniform.

“Truthfully, all I thought about today was getting a win. And thanks to great help from my teammates, I got that win and the team got that win. I was terrible, but we won, so who cares?”

There’s a lot of people in Cincinnati who are pulling for Homer Bailey to really have a steady big league career. We’re one of them. We really like this kid and think he’s got a chance to be an even better player then he would have been had he been an instant success. A little bit of adversity brings out the best in warriors. We think he’s a warrior in the making.

Throwing it around

Mell Allen (of TWIB fame) would tell you that Saturdays were made for baseball, and we subscribe to that theory. Saturday afternoon has always been our favorite time of the week, and that especially goes for in the summer. So the sun is shining, the weather is warm and there will be baseball on your television today. Take in a game and rejoice.

-Xavier Nady is out for the year for the Yankees, and possibly next season too. [ESPN’s Sweetspot]
-Sonnastine out; Kazmir in. [The Rays Party]
-Jeremy Jeffress is doing a fine job of screwing up what could have been a great MLB career. [Milwaukee JS]
-Derek Jeter just keeps on rolling. []
-Remembering when baseball was cooler then it is present day. [Bugs & Cranks]
-One of our biggest pet peaves: fans who go to the game and do everything but watch it. [Blue Collar Baseball]
-Why the Ballpark in Arlington sucks. [Deadspin]
-We’ll do better at covering losses and not just Reds wins. [Red Reporter]

Dodger Stadium is his address, but every ballpark was his home

Andre Ethier had the game of a lifetime last night. When you homer three times in a ballgame, you’re locked in. It’s refreshing to see this in this day in age. You’d think the amout of three homer games would decrease. Granted, it was only the second three homer game by a player this season (Torii Hunter with the other), but it’s nice to know that as steroids decrease in the game, the feat can still be accomplished.

And at the end of the day, it was another home win without Manny for the Dodgers.

My team got beat last night; Good luck to your team

[Box Score]
There was really only one word to sum it all up last night, embarrassing.
The Reds continued to show the world that they can’t hit anyone left handed. It doesn’t matter who it is. Jeremy Sowers has been beaten like a snare drum all season, he hasn’t even pitched well in AAA. I mean, the league smiles when they see they get to face Jeremy Sowers. That’s been his trademark since he’s been a Major Leaguer. But against the Reds he went 7 innings and struck out 6 while allowing just one walk and two earned runs.
The Indians treated Aaron Harang badly, like everyone else has lately. Harang drops to 5-8 on the season after going 4 and 2/3 innings and allowing 7 runs on 10 hits.
Ryan Garko and Victor Martinez each homered in the 9-2 rout. And it’s becoming a trend of this Reds team to not only lose, but get blown completely out of the water when they do lose.
Joey Votto and Jay Bruce went 0 for 8 with 5 strikeouts. When that happens, it’s going to be tough for the Reds to win. Johnny Gomes went 2 for 3 to raise his average to .367 on the season. Brandon Phillips continued his best Chad Ocho-Cinco act, making a laughable error and pimping a home run that hit off the top of the wall. We’ll say this to Brandon: when Adam Dunn and Ken Griffey Jr. left town, you said you were the team leader. You are a clown who doesn’t know the first thing about true hustle and heart. You are not a team leader and we have doubts that you’ll ever be a member of a team that makes it to the World Series. Check back in a decade and let us know if we weren’t right about him. He’s a hot dog and you can’t win with the lapses in effort he brings on a nightly basis.

Gramps Piniella isn't too old to remember his first toke

What is it with the Chicago Cubs and Marijuana? It’s almost as if to wear the uniform, you’ve got to have some amount of THC in your system.

And Lou Piniella recently came to the aid of his incumbent dope-smoking Rookie of the Year Geovany Soto:
“Look, I have smoked dope one time in my life,” Piniella said before the Cubs-White Sox game Friday. ”And it didn’t do a damn thing for me, and I never tried it again. I’m fortunate because of that. A lot of people do. You can even buy it in California from a pharmacy.
“I do know young people make mistakes at times and learn from mistakes. I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life personally, and I’ve learned from them.”

While a good manager always comes to the defense of his players, we’re calling bullshit on Piniella (and Soto) saying they’ve only kissed Mary Jane one time.

Now if they could only get Milton Bradley some of that real potent shit and calm his ass down.

Get to know Casey "Pig Pen" Mcgehee

Full Name:

Casey Cletus Mcgehee


Listed at 6’1″, actual 5’8″

Listed at 195, actual 245
Why you should want to know who he is:
-Currently raking at a .344 clip for the first place Milwaukee Brewers.
-You probably thought he was black when you first noticed his name in the box score, and he couldn’t be further from.
No relation to:
Willie McGee, who is black.

Other aliases:
Pig Farmer, “Fuck-slop“, Lurvy the Lumberjack

On how he got the nickname “Pig Pen”:
“Basically it’s because when you’re playing third base you got a lot of opportunity to get dirty. As a kid, I was always the kid whose mom was doing uniform laundry. I liked to get mud on my pants, my shirt, everything. Looked like I had been rolling in the mud for 9 innings.”

*He also once wiped his ass on another player’s dinner napkin at a post game buffet, thus being the real reason.

Notable quotes:

Hobbies other then baseball:
-Has a silver dollar collection
-Spraying shit with WD-40

Political Affiliation:
Whig Party (did not vote in 2008)

On his first big league hit (off Braden Looper):
“That guy looked fuckin’ weird. Was he in the Adams Family movies?”

Off-season workout regimen:
-Walking on incline treadmill (speed 2.2)
-Humps body pillows on his waterbed

Projects to ___________ after 10 big league seasons:
-The guy behind your deli counter

Most candid experience playing with Prince Fielder:
-Stole a pack of Parliament Lights out of Prince’s locker.

Fun fact:
-Once took a picture of one of his dumps and sent it to several teammates. The text, featuring a picture photo of his rather long excrement had a short caption written with it. It said simply “log ride”.