BACK TO NORMALCY
What do you all think of the moves the club made yesterday? The Reds added a couple of bona fide big leaguers in Orlando Cabrera and Aaron Miles and created spots by dealing Willy Taveras and Adam Rosales. If you were one of the many who thought the team needed to address the shortstop position, I think the club adequately did so by adding Cabrera. I’m not naïve to the feelings a lot of you had for Willy as a player, so I think both moves yesterday were met with approval by the majority of the Reds fanbase.
On a personal note, I’m going to miss Rosey. One of the nicest guys in this game. He’s the first player since I’ve worked for the Reds, to approach me in the clubhouse to introduce himself, having already knew my name. I wish him nothing but success and good luck and I hope all of you continue to root him on, too.
Now, many of you have asked about the Bobblehead with No Name. I’m happy to report that he has been returned safely and is resting comfortably in my office. Unfortunately, he didn’t get a chance to ride along with me on the Reds Caravan (something about Visa problems), but I did bring him some souvenirs from the road to soothe is agitation.
As for his name? ….tune in Thursday.
Hey, if you folks get a chance, check out the Louisville Bats Facebook Page. Our Triple-A affiliate is doing some great things down there in the Bluegrass State, and I hope you’ll check ’em out and “become a fan” on their site.
With all of the stuff going on yesterday, I didn’t get a chance to properly put the cap on the Reds Caravan. We had a great time on the North Leg and I hope you all had a chance to follow the entire tour here on Better Off Red. If so, you can tell it’s a lot of fun for us…but a lot of work, too. I personally want to thank the people who tend to get forgotten when the recognition gets handed out. It’s easy for the guys riding the bus. All we have to do is make sure we show up on time and leave on time. Piece of cake. It’s the folks NOT on the bus, who in my opinion deserve most of the praise…
Kathryn Braun, Ashley Vella and Adam Shaffer who were absolutely fantastic in getting the venues set up for our stops, assisting with the fans and their questions, taking down the set-up at the conclusion of our stops, ordering food for the guys on the bus and then driving hundreds of miles to the next stop to do it all over again. It’s exhausting work and they simply dominated it.
Nick St. Pierre who as Gapper, is one of the most entertaining people I know and who is simply outstanding with the fans, especially the young ones.
Eric Keller, Patrick Montague and Claire Horstman who drove all over our great state of Ohio (and into the great state of West Virginia, too!) to meet up with us and provide information to the fans regarding ticket sales, and special community nights for cities like Portsmouth, Celina and Zanesville.
Members of our hall of fame staff, Dustin and Craig Bradds, two of the nicest people you’ll ever meet, who followed the caravan to nearly every stop and set-up/broke-down their heavy display cases, all so the fans all over Reds Country could get a taste of the Reds Hall of Fame.
Ed McMasters and John Cappella worked tirelessly as our sponsor representatives from Cincinnati USA Regional Tourism Network and CincinnatiUSA.com.
Michael Anderson, Diana Torry and Charley Frank also deserve a lot of credit for their help with several of our stops.
These folks don’t ride on the bus. They don’t get to take naps on a rolling luxury liner with digital HD-TV at their disposal. They aren’t met at the caravan stops with roaring applause. They aren’t waited on hand-and-foot. But you know what? They’re the ones who do all the work. And they deserve a lot more credit than us guys on the bus.
And these are just the people from the North Tour. Credit also goes to everyone who had a hand in the West and South Tours as well. Especially, my dear friend Zach Bonkowski, Rob Butcher, Larry Herms, Ryan Niemeyer, Corey Hawthorne, Casandra Ersel, Chelsea Theaker, Colin Ethier, Brandon Bowman, Joe Zerhusen, Bart Conway, Lindsey Lander, Matthew Wagner, Tony Barton and Gil Cedar.
Jarrod Rollins was a tremendous help this year in his efforts to keep Better Off Red updated with continuous reports from the road. Myself as well as Rob Butcher and Larry Herms sent Jarrod photos and recaps from all 3 legs of the caravan, and he did a great job of gathering and posting so you folks could follow along on our journey.
I also want to thank Mike Middaugh, who as our motorcoach driver, got us to where we had to be in a timely, efficient and safe manner. I’ve been on the Mike Liner 3 times now, and he’s simply a fantastic man and a great driver.
Obviously, the guys on the bus, the “rock stars” are my guys – my team. We have a great group and they really do feel like my “band of brothers.” Bob Miller is one of my favorite people in this game, so it’s always a treat to be riding with him. Same goes for Chris Welsh and Brandon Phillips, both of whom I admire tremendously.
It was really nice getting to know Glenn Braggs and Zack Cozart. Both turned out to be awesome dudes. Glenn is one of the humblest, friendliest guys I’ve ever met and Zack is a class-act kid who I hope goes very far in this game.
And then there’s Mercury Marty, who I think I might take a bullet for. He makes this whole thing fun…and is probably the funniest human being on the planet.
Finally, my main man Ryan Rizzo, who is the point-man for the North Leg. An unsung hero, Ryan is one of my best friends and one of the hardest workers in the organization. He’s a large part as to why the Reds Caravan is the best in Major League Baseball.
My most sincere thanks to all of the people I mentioned, but also thank YOU Reds fans. I love you folks and really want the team to bring you home a pennant this year. You most certainly deserve it.
You guys and gals who brought signs and who admitted (publicly, even) that you read the blog, humbled me. Thank you for reading!
Concluding today’s post, I want to send a special “shout-out” to Russ Dodd, a loyal Better Off Red reader who subjects himself to my lame humor just to catch up with the team, follow the latest adventures of the Bobblehead with No Name and see the newest members of the Reds Cap Club. Thank you, Russ. Hang in there buddy!
That’s all for now. More later….
Thanks SO very much for logging on. I really, genuintely appreciate it.