This won’t be news to any of you, but Cincinnati Reds fans have been pretty miserable for quite some time. With the team limping to the finish line of their fourth consecutive 90-loss season, after 17 losing seasons in the last 22 years…well, it hasn’t been much fun following this baseball team for a long time. Heck, there are 30-year-olds who have no memory of a Reds team winning a playoff series.
For some time, I’ve just assumed that the only reason we still get together here at the Nation to talk about the Reds every day is that old saying that “misery loves company.”
ESPN has published it’s Sports Misery Index, a metric to determine “the top 25 most miserable professional franchises to be a fan of.” You won’t be surprised to learn that we — Reds fans — rank as the 8th-most miserable fan base in the country, over all sports. Among just MLB teams, Cincinnati ranks fourth, behind San Diego, Milwaukee, and Chicago (White Sox).
It’s just a fun little exercise, but I do have to take exception with ranking the Reds behind any of those baseball teams. Yes, the Padres have been pretty rotten for a while, but they’ve made a World Series more recently than the Reds. Plus, their fans get to live in San Diego. They aren’t miserable, even if the team has been.
Milwaukee? Are Brewers fans miserable right now? No way. That team is going to the playoffs, their super-sharp front office has been aggressive in trying to improve the roster, and that team’s future is very bright.
And the White Sox won a World Series just 13 years ago! The Reds haven’t even won a playoff series in 23 years. Sure, the Sox have been pretty bad for a while, but a World Championship goes a long way. And a large percentage of Reds fans can’t remember enjoying one of those.
Most miserable, or 8th-most…who cares? We can only hope the Reds won’t rank quite as highly next year. Because I just don’t think I can grin and bear it much longer…
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.