We returned to Cobb Field at four in the morning from a long and hard 7-day road trip eagerly awaiting our day off. Scott Carroll’s host family had invited anyone on the team to come to their cabin on the Stillwater River for the day. Cabin is no way to describe this beautiful mountain home (picture attached). However, the house was destroyed in a wildfire last summer and construction on the new house is almost finished. Of the eight players that made the trip, only two other players and myself remembered sleeping bags, although none forgot their inner-tubes for floating the river (64 degrees that day).
On our way to the house, before we were out of cell phone range, one of the guys received a text message informing him of the coaching changes. We quickly started calling around to find out more concrete details. There was one clear feeling among all the guys I spoke with, “Thank God we won’t have team fundamentals at 2 anymore.” Basically, because we are in rookie ball, at the beginning of the season most teams have a lot of early work to learn the organization’s bunt plays, 1st-and-3rd defenses, etc. The only problem was we were 3/4 of the way through our schedule and we were still showing up at 2 pm everyday. On days when it is 103 degrees, our players were shot by the time our 7 pm games rolled around.
The timing of the firing is what makes me want to ask questions. I can see small stuff (like what I previously mentioned) that the organization might not have been happy with, but with only 15 games to go, I figured they just would not be asked back. In the end, the organization acted in the best interest of the players and organization. There was a completely different (and by different I mean upbeat and positive) attitude among the players the first day back from our day-off. Personally, as a pitcher trying to move up, who wouldn’t want the pitching coordinator to watch you throw everyday?
Sorry I couldn’t be more forthcoming, but I know about as much as the next guy. Enjoy the pictures.
Blame Chad for creating this mess.
Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.
You can email Chad at email@example.com.