It all comes down to this.

Each week, you have been voting in RNR Madness, our 68-team tournament to name the most valuable player in Reds history. Your votes have narrowed the field down to the final two. Now we look to determine the winner of this incredibly important competition. We’re now ready to crown a champion.

You already know the matchup if you listened to our latest podcast episode: 1 seed Johnny Bench vs. 1 seed Joe Morgan. If you want to see the results of each round, you can check out all the details here. Round of 68 | Round of 32 | Sweet Sixteen | Elite Eight | Final Four

As we have done every week, the polls will open on Sunday at 8:00 pm, and will remain open for precisely three days. Remember that you are voting for “Most Valuable Red.” The definition of “valuable” is open to interpretation and completely up to you. Feel free to leave comments about any particular aspect of the voting, or any individual matchup, and we may discuss it on the podcast.

Remember, this is only an exhibition. This is not a competition. Please…no wagering.

Here’s the updated bracket:

Let’s do this! For research purposes: Johnny Bench | Joe Morgan

RNR Madness -- Championship!

  • 1 Johnny Bench (67%, 192 Votes)
  • 1 Joe Morgan (33%, 94 Votes)

Total Voters: 286

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Winners will be discussed on the next episode of the podcast!

11 Responses

  1. Colorado Red

    This is the hardest decision of all.
    Joe and John are both inner circle HOF’rs with the Reds.
    Without one of them, we would hot have had the Back to Back WC.
    I went with John, just by a little bit.

  2. CFD3000

    Because he spent his entire career with the Reds, and because he redefined his position, it’s Bench by half a step for me. But how cool is it that the elite eight includes 6 Hall of Famers, one more that will join them (Votto) and one that you could argue without pretense could stand beside the other seven in that same Hall (Pinson). And all that without starting in on the great Reds pitchers. We’ve been blessed by some amazing players in Cincinnati Red. Thanks for all this memory lane time Chad. Great stuff.

    • CFD3000

      I tried to post a version of this earlier but the site was slower than a Cubs catcher’s fastball. Yes, I know Peter Edward Rose is not IN the Hall of Fame. But his play on the field was worthy of a plaque. We all know that. Whether he deserves induction is another question entirely. But I’m counting him among the 6 immortals in the elite eight.

  3. rex e aultman

    they changed the day Joe showed up…….Joe in an impossible decision

  4. Jreis

    I would argue that Johnny is the reds all time mvp and Pete is Cincinnati’s all time mvp. When you travel nationally and talk to strangers Pete Rose is always the first player mentioned!

    • John

      Sorry, Rose shouldn’t be in the same Conversation with Bench, Rose shamed himself and Cincinnati. Bench has been stand up his whole Career. And he revolutionized his position.

  5. Greg S

    Immensely enjoyed watching both play, and Bench certainly was (for me) the best catcher ever.
    However, without Morgan the Reds would not have had those magic ’75 and ’76 seasons, nor would they have been as successful throughout the ’70s.
    Bench may have redefined catching, but Morgan redefined the Reds.

    • greenmtred

      An impossible choice for me, so I didn’t make it. It’s certainly true that without Joe, the BRM wouldn’t have been what it was, but the same is true of Johhny Bench.

  6. Michael Smith

    I picked Joe but it was hard. I do not think you could go wrong between Joe, Johnny and Frank

  7. daytonnati

    All good points. I do like the argument that the Reds did not win it all until Joe showed up, but they did win a National League pennant and were already nicknamed “The Big Red Machine” with Tommy Helms at second base. Joe was the final ingredient to elevate them from very good to legendary. However, what if you removed Johnny Bench from those Reds teams? Would the Reds with Joe at second and Bill Plummer behind the plate win two World Championships?

  8. Rus D

    Toughest position to play on the field? Catcher.

    Greatest catcher of all time? Bench. Gotta go with Johnny.