I’m Happy

So the National League Division Series is scheduled to begin this weekend. Did you notice that the Reds qualified for the NLDS? Obviously, we don’t know who they’ll be playing; those dominoes will fall this week.

Time for another one of my rambling posts. I don’t know about you, but the excitement over this playoff appearance is beginning to bubble over. The editors are discussing potential playoff preview posts (alliteration, for the win!), and I went back and looked at what we did to preview the 2010 NLDS. It’s exciting, and I can’t wait for it to start, no matter who the Reds will be playing.

You know, Redleg Nation began during spring training in 2005. The Reds had suffered through some awful years before then, and they have suffered through some terrible ones since. Still, every day, we plugged away here, talking about our favorite team. Yes, that’s the definition of insanity.

That’s also why the 2012 season has been so special. Now, 2010 was special in a different kind of way. It was the club’s first post-season appearance in fifteen years, and it came out of nowhere, in a sense. Despite the fact that Cincinnati was embarrassed in three quick games, I was a happy guy…and I liked being a happy baseball fan. It was a revelation to me, after all those frustrating seasons filled with the Jimmy Andersons and Corey Pattersons of the world. Who knew we were allowed to enjoy baseball that much?

After the 2010 season, I resolved that I was going to try as hard as I could just to enjoy the game and the Reds. After all, it’s baseball, my favorite sport. It’s supposed to be fun, isn’t it? That wasn’t an easy resolution to keep in 2011, but once the Reds started winning games in 2012, I perked up.

Sure, there have been reasons to get frustrated this year. The lineups have been mostly miserable, the offense has struggled more often than not, etc. We’ve heard all the complaints lodged by the FARR DUSTY! brigade. We’ve discussed all those things here at RN, in as rational a manner as we could, I hope. But I never let that stuff get me down. The Reds were winning games, and I’m happy when the Reds win games. I wanted to enjoy the winning while it was happening, because I’ve spent a lot of years watching the Reds play terrible baseball.

Yes, I will be disappointed if the Reds don’t win at least one series this time around. Heck, after the brilliant season we’ve just experienced, I’ll be a little disappointed if they don’t make the World Series. Either way, however, this season has been fun. I just want it to keep being fun for as long as possible.

I’ll never tell any of you how to root for the Reds. If you want to complain all the time, be my guest. If you want to be the quintessential “negative” fan, it’s none of my business (those of you who came over here from the Reds listserv know that I have done more than my fair share of complaining over the years). If you love the Reds, you have a home here to discuss this club. Pull for the team however you like.

One thing is true, however: I’ve been much happier since I quit getting so frustrated over the daily lineup and the fact that guys like Valdez and Cairo are on the roster, for example. I’m not particularly happy about these things, but there’s not a single thing I can do to change them, so I just comment on them and move on. I’m not telling you to do that; again, I couldn’t care less how you choose to pull for the Redlegs.

I mention this only to explain the subject line above. I’m happy. I’m happier as a Reds fan than I’ve been in years. This organization has a chance to make the World Series this year, and a chance to be competitive for the foreseeable future. Baseball is supposed to be fun, right? Well, it’s fun for me right now. I hope you guys are as happy as I am.

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.

Join the conversation! 22 Comments

  1. Good post. Could not agree more. We are in a much much much better place than we were on Oct. 1, 2011. And when you learn not to fret too much over the stuff you have no control over, life gets a little more simpler and easier.

  2. I have to agree with the basic point of the post. Also, I must say that what heartens me the most is the notion that this seems to be the beginning of a more consistent offering of solid clubs. The payroll is very manageable, key cogs are locked up for some time, and (perhaps most importantly) there appears to be an organization wide depth in the quality of pitching. These are the things that have excited me the most.

    We all know that the Reds will need more than five starters next year. However, between Chapman (maybe), Cingrani, and others, I believe that there will be no more Josh Foggs in the rotation. The bullpen depth looks solid as well. If Madsen and/or Broxton sign on the cheap, then it may well continue to be a great strength even if Chapman moves to the rotation. I’m looking forward to a year of Didi in the big leagues. He may push Cozart for time and will surely be more valuable than Valdez. I’m not sure if Rolen will be back, but I’m thinking that Frazier will be the man at 3B next year, regardless. It would be nice to resign Ludwick (and I think Walt will get it done).

    So, when I consider that my biggest concern, at this point, is who will be playing CF next year then, heck yes, I’m very happy! . . .

  3. Agreed. And overall, I’m highly optimistic about the postseason and the Reds future.

  4. Deliriously happy, except that my hometown guy has an impossible threshold to meet to get regular playing time, while others are much more privileged. I think I can accept the “injustice” for a World Series, or maybe even advancing to LCS.

  5. Well said Chad. We all should be extremely happy. The Reds are a good team and will be for a long time. I will say I am becoming increasingly annoyed that the Reds’ hard work is likely to be rewarded with a game 1 matchup on the road in San Fran vs. Matt Cain, but why complain about that?!? As least we’re not Pirates fans.

  6. If I recall correctly, the average age of this team was about 28.8 at the beginning of the year. What Walt and Bob have done to re-sign core players, develop young pitching and keep the farm system humming along, means that staying healthy will be the biggest obstacle the Reds should face each season. The rest of the National League should fear us for some time to come.

  7. @VottoManCrush: Who cares about Matt Cain? The Reds have rocked him this year and Cueto has a sub 2.00 ERA at AT&T in his few appearances there.

  8. It is a good sign that CF is the big question mark. No longer are we worried about filling out with the rotation or finding a suitable closer. Or a thirdbaseman. Or a shortstop. I think the 2013 Reds are in great shape if Drew Stubbs in their biggest concern or weakness.

    The Reds have relatively quickly turned from a big run producing team into one that looks like it can contend long term with a successful young pitching staff and promising arms in the minors (Cingrani, Stephenson, Corcino, Travieso). There are some blanks to fill in, like on the bench, but no gaping hole (like those they tried to fill with Mat Latos and Ryan Madson). I’m just sad that the Astros are leaving the division.

  9. @rfay00: True, and I’m not scared about the matchup at all. I think we’ll sweep ’em. Doesn’t take away from the fact that it is mind-numbingly dumb to have the higher seed play on the road in game 1. Nevertheless, I’m happy!!! 😀

  10. I’ve got to agree with Chad on this one. After the miserable years of the 2000’s, two of the last three seasons have been the most fun I’ve had as a Reds fan (considering I was only 6 when we last won the WS in 1990). 🙂

  11. Lineup tonight against the WLBs and what I would assume for Game 1 of the playoffs as well (minus Arroyo pitching):

    Phillips 2B
    Cozart SS
    Votto 1B
    Ludwick LF
    Bruce RF
    Rolen 3B
    Hanigan C
    Stubbs CF
    Arroyo P

  12. Woooooooooooooo

  13. @RedLegHerrm: Nice try. Now where’s the REAL lineup that has Hanigan batting 8th???

    Good post Chad. At some point with all this winning you start to become incredulous and a bit spoiled at the same time, you know? It’s at those times I force myself to watch some other teams for perspective–it sure makes you appreciate what you have. I’ve got big hopes for this postseason, but the format of the NLDS worries me in the same way random acts of violence worry me….irrationally. If we get thru that, I like our chances as much as anyone in baseball.

  14. @Sultan of Swaff: It’ll be interesting. I think you’re probably right. They were flipped in yesterday’s game.

  15. @Sultan of Swaff: No doubt about it. The NLDS is extremely scary. I just hope we can split with whomever we get in that series. I like our chances to win 2 out of 3 at home.

  16. Yeah, I’m happy too. Even amid the whining, look at what we’re whining ABOUT?? We can actually picture maybe getting a few breaks and some timely hits and this team going to the World Series!! …… Concerns, sure. But if the option is to discuss how take a B-plus team or an A-minus team and try to get that all-elusive A-plus, that’s a far, far cry from praying for enough to go right just to have a .500 team!!!

  17. It’s all gravy from here. Thanks to Redleg Nation for giving us a place to collect and be fans. What a fun season.

  18. I’m definitely happy.

    Now: Reds in the playoffs, nationally televised games, exciting atmosphere, very strong pitching, excellent defense, and enough offensive weapons that if just one or two get hot (paging you Messrs. Phillips, Bruce, Ludwick, Frazier and Rolen) they could bring home a ring. Worst case scenario can’t be worse than 2010 and at the very least they build excitement for the coming years, and gain experience for return trips which we all expect will occur. Best case – more champagne!

    Next year: No Valdez, No Cairo, Frazier at 3rd full time, and Stubbs in a can’t lose situation – either he works hard in the offseason and spring, gets his eyes checked?, changes his approach, and finds some consistency to show that his bat really can justify keeping his excellent glove in centerfield, or we label it a failed experiment and he simply tides the Reds over to the Billy Hamilton era, a solid core under contract for several years (and in some cases many years) and, finally, even more talented arms on the way.

    Yes, I’m happy too.

  19. Who’s happy? I’m happy! I am also getting nervous, but I love it. Most of my life, there has been little chance to be nervous about baseball in October. The little things that we complain about-and there will always be something!-are such minuscule things compared to what we had in the past. Keep it going! The Hunt for Reds October is on! 😀

  20. Happy Happy Happy. How Happy??

    Happy as Gallagher in a water melon patch!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    😯 😆 (to steal from a recent insurance commercial)

    Looking forward to Reds in World Series!

  21. I Am happy..

    Ive been a reds fan all my life… (25 years) and when i was growing up Baseball was pretty awesome.. Barry Larkin.. Chris Sabo etc.. Then there was that gap in time lets not discuss it were base ball was dead to me and i didnt even dare watch it.. Lol and behold 2010 rolls around and we were relevant again.. But lets not mention the embarrassment we received in the post season that year. 2011 was high expectations but low performance… reds were on my radar again… When we signed Joey Votto at the beginning of this season i knew we were finally going to have a team.. THIS is the FRIST year in A LOOOOOOOOOOOONG time that i have REally made an Effort to watch the games HELL even made it to my First MLB game Reds vs Rockies back in July i think.. (Which was amazing btw.)

    TL:DR I dont care who you are if your a true reds fan you got to root for them. ‘

    Lets go REDLEGS I am expecting us to atleast go to the NLCS

  22. I am happy. I had become jaded but the last 3-4 years (thank you Bob) have helped me discard much of that. This team has an expectation of winning. Starting this year, I heard the new guys like Latos and Ludwick say ‘World Series’ and became nervous (can we say that?) They were ahead of the expectations curve and this team had a confidence I couldn’t recall in the last 10+ years. It’s refreshing and it all has me looking forward to being a fan for years to come and teaching my future kids about the Reds!

Comments are closed.

About Chad Dotson

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.


2012 Postseason, 2012 Reds


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