[This report was submitted by Jeff Lamb, from Gallatin TN. He comments as jeffintn on Redleg Nation. He and his son attended the Reds Caravan event at Cool Springs in Brentwood last night and filed this report. Thanks Jeff!]

It was our first Reds Caravan so we didn’t know exactly what to expect.

We weren’t disappointed.

The only complaint that I had was during the Q/A, the audio was too low to hear any answers except from the professional, Jeff Brantley. He knows how to talk into a microphone.

My son had brought a baseball to get signed by the players and nearly fell on the floor when it was announced that Joe Morgan was joining them.

He had Joe sign the ball right next to an autograph from George Foster that he got in Louisville a few years ago.

It definitely made his night.

I estimate the crowd to be around 300 and once the Q/A was over, the line for autographs moved fairly quickly.

I got to ask Billy Hamilton and Zack Cozart each a question while they were giving me the autographs.

I asked Billy, “How much past the end of your fingertips did the mitt that he wears on the base paths extend.” He said, “To right here (indicating the ends of his fingers).” I said I figured that the league would have had a problem with that and he said the it was checked regularly by the umpires and mentioned a guy named West by name. He sounded like a real stickler.

I then asked Zack how the knee was. He said “Thanks for asking. It feels great.” I told him how sad it was with the season he was having and he agreed. He asked if we were from around here (meaning Nashville) and we told him we were from Gallatin (25 miles NE of Nashville) and he told us that he lives in Brentwood, TN (where the event was held). I had no idea and that’s pretty cool.

The rest of the guys I just said Hi to and got their autograph and moved on but I did tell Joe that it was an honor to meet him.

Attached are two pictures (one from each end of the podium).

One pic shows Dick Williams, Jesse Winker, Billy Hamilton and Zack Cozart.

photo 1

The other pic shows Joe Morgan signing my son’s baseball, Bob Castellini, Jeff Brantley, Zack again and Billy holding some kid’s paper mache baseball to be signed.

photo 2

In all, a great time. Traffic was a disaster but we had left in plenty time to not miss anything.

We will definitely be back next year. It is a long way to Brentwood so we might run up to Bowling Green, KY on Saturday next time through. It’s about the same distance for us.

16 Responses

  1. Steelerfan

    Thanks for sharing. Have a morgan autograph myself, very cool.

  2. Aaron Bradley

    Look I don’t mean to be rude, and I am not claiming I would have the guts to do any differently… but why aren’t fans holding management’s feet to the fire, and asking the questions to need to be asked, why they signed some bad contracts in their early reign and why now they are unloading guys when their stock is down for anything they can get even at positions of depth. Sure the pitching is young but why mail in a season like this and show up at events and look fans in the eyes? I am perplexed to say the least.

    • sezwhom

      All good points. This team has done very little to juice confidence going into this season.

    • Chuck Schick

      How do you answer the question ” Why did you sign players to bad contracts?”
      A. We made some mistakes
      B. We’re really dumb
      C. I was drunk at the time
      D. Homer Bailey was holding my grandson hostage.

      What exactly do you want them to say?

  3. icee82

    Psychologically speaking most people do not like to ask or create “confrontation” especially at a public event such as this. However I think that deep in our hearts, we already know the answer. We were not good last year and as a team most everyone underperformed. Frankly a lot of our players were just not that good. Frazier had a great first half but he swooned after the break. Also his RISP was putrid. Billy Hamilton has not proven that he can hit big league pitching. I am hoping that Jay Bruce can finally get things figured out because he has been horrible for two consecutive seasons. I hope that he can remain healthy and rake this year. We did not get a lot of production from the catching position. After Meso went down, we had another hole in our lineup. We could not afford Cueto. They tried to sign Frazier long term but the two sides were far apart. Left field continues to be a “black hole”. I am actually one of the few fans that seems to really be excited that we are retooling. I have seen enough “heartless, passionless” baseball I want to see some young kids who are trying to prove themselves grinding everyday.

    • Jack

      I agree with you. I’m excited to see the young talent and the season to get started. You can paint it anyway you want to but the team as it was wasn’t going anywhere. Chapman cost to much for a closer and Frazier isn’t as good as people think he is. These are the same people who thought Heisey was an allstar.

  4. Aaron Bradley

    Frazier swooned the year before also, so he proved maybe he tires in the 2nd half… participating in the home run contest and going to the finals has to be considered a factor, and if the team was in the race I don’t think he should be allowed to participate again… I seem to recall the same thing happening to Josh Hamilton when he won the derby several years back. Point is why sell low? Wait for him to surge… or as many have thought the team waited too long to realize they needed to begin a rebuild. Panic selling is the absolutely wrong thing they could do. This was a disaster of an off season, the team is decidedly worse and the main player they acquired is blocked by one of the best players on the team (Phillips) who refuses to give way. This season is going to be historically ugly. As a fan from afar I don’t really mind it, but how about those fans that attend games regularly i.e. season ticket holders… this must have hurt season ticket sales and renewals. I just don’t see the logic in any of this and it smells of desperation or financial durress. I wouldn’t be surprised if Castellini plans to sell his shares soon.

    • Chuck Schick

      How dumb do you think the other teams are? They have access to Todd Fraziers historic stats as well. If he gets off to a great start are they going to overlook the fact that he historically struggles in the 2nd half? Do you think Fraziers 2nd half struggles are some secret?

      • Aaron Bradley

        Well all the more you hold on to him and let him have a full solid season… and restrict him from participating in the derby. I don’t appreciate your tone of righteous indignation either.

      • Aaron Bradley

        Regardless of the information out there they sold “low” just after his soon… its that simple. This is not a guy that was hard to trade, let me point that out to you. A guy with Frazier’s pedigree, numbers, and controllable salary is a huge asset and the Reds played it like a liability. The 10 year old kid that questioned Jocketty has a lot of guts and perhaps more commonsense than you possess sir. Good day to you!

      • jessecuster44

        love it. Reds traded their two best pieces for peanuts. Someone needs to hold them accountable.

  5. memgrizz

    I was at the Brentwood caravan stop as well – took my 5 year old son. They did a very nice job. It was my first time to attend a caravan stop as well. I was frankly pleasantly surprised by the turnout, given (1) there don’t seem to be a ton of Reds fans south of Nashville (where I live) and (2) the outlook for 2016 (and 2017) is fairly bleak. Like Jeff, I was not expecting Joe Morgan to be there – I had to do a double-take when I saw him sitting up there. My 5 year old didn’t quite understand why that “old dude” was signing his baseball – he only wanted the current players to sign it. We had a long talk on the ride home…

    Unfortunately, I missed the Q&A due to other family obligations, and we were rushed a bit moving through the autograph line. Zack and I grew up in neighboring suburbs outside of Memphis, so we chatted for a while about that.

    There was one important injury nugget that I learned while talking with the guys in the autograph line. Dick Williams tore his ACL while skiing…

  6. ArtWayne

    Reds.com had the Coolsprings time @ 6. They just missed by an hour. I missed the Qs and Answer session. Thanks a lot Reds.Com.

  7. james garrett

    I am like Jack in hoping to see some of our young talent but Walt already said he liked our lineup and we would go as far as our young pitching takes us.Translation is Suraez takes over at third with Cozart/Meso returning from injuries and no young position players see the field.Same old Walt doing the same old thing and expecting different results.