With one swing of the bat, the Cincinnati Reds have vaulted themselves into immortality. This was more than a monumental win to clinch the first postseason birth since your editor was a child. This was the aligning of the stars. This was something that happens once in a lifetime.
Aroldis Chapman gets the win. Jay Bruce is forever the hero. The Reds could have clinched over the weekend in San Diego. They could have clinched while idle last night. If not for all those 9th inning collapses, and those 45 come from behind victories; we wouldn’t have been given that sweet moment that was last night.
Everything happens for a reason, both in baseball and in life. There are no coincidences. This was some kind of special gift, given to us for 15 years plus of suffering. This was Marge Schott’s ghost flying over the stadium, this was Carl Lindner and the visions of Ken Griffey Jr. tearing up his hamstrings and his knee and every other injury all over that field. This was a reward for the Austin Kearns’ and the Adam Dunn’s being something less of what you wanted. And for the Jeremy Sowers and the Chris Grulers and for the Wily Mo Pena’s never quite working out.
Thousands of players through the years could not reach the heights of this high character group, a group full of guys who cried grown man tears tonight when they gave you and I what we’ve all been waiting so long for.
Like Homer Bailey said tonight after the game, all of these kids came up together. They all know each-other. These are our home grown kids. The nucleus wasn’t purchased. In a day in age in this game where so many teams go out and buy parts, or through the years write checks to collect what they need to get to this spot, we did it the unconventional and wholesome way. We did it a year ahead of schedule. We did it our way, the way the Indians did it in Major League with a dramatic script finish right out of The Natural.
This is one of the finest moments I’ll ever have in sports. It’s one of those moments when we started this blog that I never imagined being part of it all. If you live to be 100, you’ll never have something like this happen twice. And if it does somehow; which it will not, the next time around would never be this sweet. This is the wedding, the honeymoon and the anniversary all wrapped into one.
Trailing off into clouds of Heaven, this is your editor signing off for the night. I love these 2010 Cincinnati Reds.