Nothing too earth shattering here. Ramon Ortiz was a bust. 34 homeruns, 9-11 record, and a 5.36 ERA. I could go on a little more, but it all just backs up my point. Ortiz is eligible for arbitration and is still with the Reds, so at worst we’re stuck with him at a lower price.
Rich Aurilia was actually a pleasant surprise for the Reds. He started out as a minor league signee and made the team as a shortstop. Felipe Lopez emerged and D’Angelo Jiminez was dumped, so Aurilia moved over to second base and he had a nice second half. Now we need to find a new second baseman.
Former Reds GM Jim Bowden got a six month extension as GM of the Nationals, so he’ll be handling things while the new ownership team gets put into place.
And if you think the current Reds front office is inept at times, check out this story (sorry to see Mr. Dalton passed away). The Reds trade Frank Robinson prior to the 1966 season at age 30, saying he was past his prime. Robinson only went on that year to win the triple crown and he led the Orioles to the 1966 World Championship.
And in case you missed it, I picked a near perfect playoffs. Had the Cards played in the World Series, I would have nailed each of the series. This goes along with my crystal ball like predictions I made back in May regarding the Reds season.
Okay, maybe it wasn’t quite a round table. There was no table. Although I guess everyone did the chat at their desks. Unless they have laptops, then I guess they could have done it in their bed.
Anyway, here’s where you can get the low down on the latest and greatest Reds chat.
sweaver: If you tighten up the defense, the pitching will improve in a hurry…witness the White Sox
JD Arney: Yep, I still want Mike Cameron … I was serious about that
Blade: Except for those balls going over the fence
sweaver: Aurilia 34 next year….my bad
Chad — RN: Re: guidance: what are coaches for?
RHM: Chad, haven’t you ever been on a team?
Chad — RN: RHM, I actually coach a team right now. Had our first basketball practice tonight.
Chad — RN: These are professionals. You’re thinking about Little League.
Chad — RN: That sounded more harsh than I meant it to. I’m just saying we need GOOD players, rather than experienced players.
RHM: Consider the bullpen this season
sweaver: Take the bullpen…please
Blade: I’d rather not
RHM: They were all professionals as well, but didn’t every one of those young guys talk about how much they appreciated the guidance of the vets?
Joel: The Reds have Casey, Griffey, Larue, Cruz already to provide leadership
Joel: do they need Aurilia too?
sweaver: Sure, what are the kids gonna say
RHM: I think they don’t seen a young fella playing 2B
RHM: Unless the value is much better
sweaver: It would be
sweaver: Freel is a much better value playing 2B
RHM: That would have to be decided on a case-by-case basis
RHM: If it were true, I’d be behind it
Blade: How old is Morgan………
Joel: Blade, always living in the past…
Blade: Or even Mariano Duncan
Joel: okay, I think we should move on to another topic….if you don’t mind?
JD Arney: The defense does need upgraded, but it needs upgraded in the outfield, which is tough to do
JD Arney: Griffey won’t move, even though he’s become a liability in center, and Dunn isn’t that great in left
Chad — RN: I don’t see how the OF defense gets upgraded. Dunn has to play somewhere, and if Pena is around….
sweaver: Dunn really needs to go to 1B, with Griffey in LF or elsewhere
sweaver: And a new CF
sweaver: I like Jeremy Reed
JD Arney: I read somewhere that Dunn doesn’t want to play first, which is a shame if true
Chad — RN: The OF defense wouldn’t be terrible if Casey were traded, Dunn at 1B, Jr in LF, Kearns in CF.
Chad — RN: Then whomever else in RF.
Joel: I’ve also read somewhere that Dunn wants to go to Houston, but then he doesn’t have a choice now does he?
Chad — RN: Or Kearns in RF and a good CF.
JD Arney: maybe we could get mike cameron back
sweaver: Kearns was the only good OF defensively last year
Blade: See, Cameron was a CF stud, but he’s regressed a little
sweaver: Cameron would be great….but he’s also getting old
Chad — RN: I’d love Cameron for CF.
Blade: Any word on his status after the collision
Joel: I’d also be concerned about Cameron’s head status
Blade: Yeah, he got messed up pretty bad
JD Arney: assuming he’s healthy of course
sweaver: That’s why I say Jeremy Reed
sweaver: I think the Mariners can be fleeced
Joel: didn’t DanO assume that Milton and Wilson are healthy too?
sweaver: And Reed is the kind of contact hitter we don’t have
1975 World Series Game Seven
October 22, 1975 Reds 4, Red Sox 3 Red Win Best of Seven Series 4-3
The game appeared to be heading for a nice quiet pitching dual when the Red Sox drew first blood in the third. With one out, one of the game six heroes, Bernie Carbo, drew a walk. Denny Doyle singled and moved Carbo to third. Carl Yastrzemski singled home Carbo to put the Red Sox on the board, and then Carlton Fisk was intentionally walked to load up the bases. Fred Lynn struck out to make it two outs, but then Gullett lost control and walked Rico Petrocelli and Dwight Evans to give the Red Sox a 3-0 lead. He then got out of the jam by striking out Rick Burleson.
Through five innings, Lee held the Reds to only five hits. In the top of the sixth, Pete Rose led off the inning with a single. Joe Morgan flew out to right, then Johnny Bench forced Rose on a ground out to the shortstop. Then with two outs, Tony Perez hit a two run shot that shaved the Red Sox lead to a single run.
The Reds wouldn’t waste much time to get on the board again. In the seventh inning, Ken Griffey drew a one out walk. Cesar Geronimo popped out to the shortstop to make it two outs. Griffey stole second base and then Ed Armbrister drew a walk to put runners at first and second. Then Charlie Hustle, Pete Rose, hit a solid single to score Griffey and to tie the game.
Neither team threatend until the Reds half of the ninth. Jim Burton took the mound for the Red Sox and he led off the inning by walking Ken Griffey. Cesar Geronimo moved him over to second with a bunt, and then Griffey moved to third on Dan Driessen’s ground out. Pete Rose drew a walk to put men at the corners, and then Joe Morgan, the MVP of the league, hit a huge clutch single to drive home Griffey which gave the Reds a 4-3 lead.
Will McEnaney came in to pitch the ninth inning, and without much drama, got the Red Sox out in order. The Reds had come from being down 1-0 in the series, and 3-0 in this game to secure their first World Championship since 1940.
1975 World Series Game Six
October 21, 1975 Red Sox 7, Reds 6 (12 innings) Best of Seven Series Tied 3-3
After three days of rainouts, the Reds and Red Sox finally squared off in what has become one of the most exciting World Series games of all time. Luis Tiant, the winner in both of the Red Sox two wins in the series, started off against Gary Nolan.
Playing for their World Series lives, the Red Sox jumped out in front in the first inning. With two outs, Carl Yastrzemski and Carlton Fisk put up back to back singles, and then the rookie centerfielder, Fred Lynn, hit a huge three run homerun to give the Red Sox a 3-0 lead. By the end of the second inning, Nolan was pulled in place of Fred Norman.
Through the first four innings of play, Luis Tiant held the Reds to only two singles, but the Reds finally figured out the right hander in the fifth inning. With one out, Eddie Armbrister pinch hit for the third pitcher of the game, Jack Billingham. He drew a walk and then moved to third on a Pete Rose single. Ken Griffey then tripled to drive them both home and subsequently scored on a two out Johnny Bench single to tie the game at 3-3.
With Tiant still in the game, the Reds took their first lead of the game in the seventh. Ken Griffey and Joe Morgan led off the inning with back to back singles. Johnny Bench flew out to left and then Tony Perez flew out to right to make it two outs. Then George Foster came up huge with a bases clearing double to give the Reds a 5-3 lead.
The Reds added what appeared to be an insurance run in the top of the eighth on a Cesar Geronimo solo homerun. When the Red Sox came to bat in the bottom of the eighth inning, they were down by three runs and Sparky still had his two best relievers in reserve.
In the bottom of the eighth and with Pedro Borbon on the mound, Fred Lynn led off the inning with a single, then Rico Petrocelli drew a walk. Sparky replaced Borbon with Rawly Eastwick, who proceeded to strike out Dwight Evans and then get Rick Burleson to line out to leftfield. With two outs and two men on, Darrell Johnson put former Red and left hander Bernie Carbo in to pinch hit against the right handed Rawly Eastwick.
For thos of you unfamiliar with Sparky Anderson, he did everything by the book. In this situation, he would have immediately went with the left handed Will McEnaney to face Carbo, but Sparky thought that Carbo was the bait for such a move and in the event he put in McEnaney, Johnson would then hit his right hander, Juan Beniquez, to trump Sparky. In the end, Sparky left Eastwick in there rather then getting burned by another move by Johnson.
Looking back, it was a bad move. Bernie Carbo hit a huge three run homerun to tie the game. Eastwick then got Cecil Cooper to strike out, but by then the damage was done.
The Reds went down one-two-three in the top of the ninth, and then the Red Sox looked like they wanted to end this one without going into extra frames. Denny Doyle walked and then Yastrzemski singled to put runners at first and third with nobody out. Sparky pulled Eastwick and put in McEnaney, who then intentionally walked Carlton Fisk. With the bases loaded and nobody out, the Reds needed a huge break to win a game that appeared all but locked up after they hit in the eighth inning.
The Reds got their break. Fred Lynn hit a fly ball to George Foster, who then gunned down Denny Doyle at the plate. The Reds got two outs in a matter of seconds and then McEnaney got Rico Pettrocelli to ground out to end the inning.
Both teams went down quietly in the tenth, and in the eleventh, the Reds finally appeared to be ready to breakthrough. With Dick Drago on the mound, Pete Rose led of the inning by getting hit by a pitch. Griffey failed to move him over with a bunt and Rose was out on a fielders choice. Then Joe Morgan hit a deep fly ball to center that should have been a homerun, but Fred Lynn made a leaping grab at the wall. He threw it in to first base to double up Griffey, and the inning was over.
The Red Sox went down quietly in the bottom of the eleventh, and the Reds did the same in the top of the twelth. In the bottom of the twelth, with Pat Darcy on the mound, Carlton Fisk hit a lead off, walk off solo homerun down the left field line to end the game. The vision of Carlton Fisk trying to physically sway the ball while it’s in the air is priceless.
A four game and the two teams would square off in an all deciding game seven tomorrow.
1975 World Series – Game 5
October 16, 1975 Reds 6, Red Sox 2 Reds Lead Best of Seven Series 3-2
Don Gullett was phenomenal in his start as Darrell Johnson passed up the spaceman, Bill Lee in favor of starter Reggie Cleveland. Boston actually got on the board with a run in the first and it looked like Johnson’s move might pay off. It wasn’t until the fourth inning that it looked like the starting pitcher switch might have been the wrong move.
Tony Perez tied the game up in that fourth inning with a solo shot. The Reds took the lead (for good) in the fifth when Pete Rose doubled home Gullett. In the sixth inning, the Reds put the nail in the coffin as Tony Perez went yard for the second time in the game. The only difference was, this was a huge three run shot that gave the Reds a 5-1 lead.
The Reds added another run in the bottom of the eight on a Dave Concepcion sac. fly, and after seven straight shutout innings, the Red Sox finally got to Gullett. Fred Lynn’s RBI double shaved the lead back down to four runs, but the Red Sox never got closer. Sparky called in Rawly Eastwick, who summarily struck out Rico Petrocelli to end the game.
The series was heading back to Boston, and the Reds were one win away from winning the World Series.
1975 World Series Game 4
October 15, 1975 Red Sox 5, Reds 4 Best of Seven Series Tied 2-2
Luis Tiant took the mound for the second time in the series as he faced off against Fred Norman at Riverfront Stadium. In game one, Tiant threw a five hit shutout. In game four, the Reds finally figured out the Cuban hurler as they got to him in the very first inning. Pete Rose led off with a single and Ken Griffey doubled him home to make it 1-0. Griffey was gunned down at third trying to stretch his double into a triple, but the Reds continued their rally. Joe Morgan walked and Tony Perez moved him over to second with a ground out. Johnny Bench then doubled home Morgan, and the Reds had a nice 2-0 lead after only one inning of play.
Disaster struck the Reds in the fourth inning. Fred Norman and reliever Pedro Borbon gave up a combined six hits and five runs. To make even worse, Tony Perez’ error extended the inning and led to one of the runs being unearned.
The Reds immediately answered in the bottom of the fourth. With two outs, George Foster singled and moved to second on Denny Doyle’s error. Dave Concepcion doubled to drive home Foster, and then Cesar Geronimo tripled and drove home Foster to cut the lead to a single run. Terry Crowley struck out to end the inning, and that runner on third was stranded.
The Reds threatend in the fifth by getting runners to second and third with two outs, but once again they were unable to get a run home. Tiant held the Reds to three hits through the final four innings and he walked away with his second win of the series.
1975 World Series – Game 3
October 14, 1975 Reds 6, Red Sox 5 Reds Lead Best of Seven Series 2-1
Gary Nolan squared off against Rick Wise in game three of the World Series at Riverfront Stadium. For the third straight time, the Red Sox would get on the board first. In the top of the second, Carlton Fisk led off with a solo homer to give the Red Sox a 1-0 lead.
The home team would continue punishing Rick Wise in the fifth inning. Dave Concepcion and Cesar Geronimo led off the inning with back to back solo homers. The Reds added another run when Pete Rose tripled and Joe Morgan drove him in with a sac. fly. The Reds had a nice, comfortable, four run lead.
Pat Darcy came in to relieve Nolan in the fifth inning, and in the sixth he gave up a run. After walking Carl Yastrzemski and Carlton Fisk, he threw a wild pitch that moved them both into scoring position. Rookie Fred Lynn then drove home Yaz with a sacrafice fly.
Clay Carroll relieved Darcy in the seventh, and after getting Rick Burleson to ground into a double play, he gave up a solo homerun to Bernie Carbo. The Red Sox had slowly inched themselves back into the game, and they now trailed 5-3.
Will McEnaney pitched a perfect eighth inning and he struck out Fred Lynn to lead off the ninth. Rico Petrocelli singled and Sparky immediately went to his closer Rawly Eastwick. Typical Sparky Anderson, as he brought in his right handed closer to face the right handed Dwight Evans. This time, the percentages didn’t pay out. Dwight Evans took Eastwick yard to tie the game. The Reds four run lead had completely evaporated.
The Reds went down quietly in the bottom of the ninth, and while Denny Doyle Singled to lead off the tenth for the Red Sox, Eastwick got Carlton Fisk to ground into a double play to end the inning. In the bottom of the tenth, Geronimo singled to lead off the inning. Ed Armbrister laid down a bunt and Carlton Fisk threw the ball away for an error. With runners on second and third, Roger Moret intentionally walked Pete Rose and got Merv Rettenmund to strike out. This lineup was just too keep though, and Joe Morgan singled home Geronimo to end the game.
The Reds dodged a bullet They gave up a big lead, but fortunately they still walked away with the win and a series lead.
1975 World Series – Game 2
October 12, 1975 Reds 3, Red Sox 2 Best of Seven Series Tied 1-1
Jack Billingham squared off against the Space Man Bill Lee in Game two of the 1975 World Series. The Red Sox got on the board for the first time again in the bottom of the first when Carlton Fisk singled home Carl Yastrzemski.
The Reds finally scored for the first time in the entire series in the top of the fourth. Pete Rose led off the inning with a ground out and then Joe Morgan drew a walk. Johnny Bench singled and Morgan moved to third. Tony Perez then hit into a fielders choice, but Morgan was able to score to tie the game up.
Billingham went on a roll and from the second inning through the fifth inning, he gave up only one hit. In the bottom of the sixth and with Yastrzemski on first, Dave Concepcion misplayed Carlton Fisk’s grounder and everybody was safe. Rico Petrocelli later singled home Yaz and again, the Red Sox had the lead.
The Reds managed only two singles through the fifth through eighth inning, and heading into the ninth, Bill Lee seemed firmly in control. The game was delayed for nearly a half hour in the seventh inning, but Red Sox Manager Darrell Johnson stuck with Lee.
Things finally came unglued in the top of the ninth. Johnny Bench led off with a double, and Darrell Johnson immediately went to Dick Drago in the pen. He got Tony Perez to ground out to short, then George Foster flew out to put the Red Sox one out away from taking a 2-0 lead in the series. Dave Concepcion saw things otherwise and singled home Bench to tie the game. The Reds continued their rally when Dave Concepcion stole second base, then Joe Morgan drove him home with a two out double. Rawly Eastwick ended the inning by forcing out Cesar Geronimo who had been intentionally walked.
Rawly Eastwick got the Red Sox out 1-2-3, the game was over and the series was tied as things moved on to Cincinnati.
1975 World Series – Game 1
October 11, 1975 Red Sox 6, Reds 0 Red Sox Lead Best of Seven Series 1-0
Luis Tiant completely baffled the Reds hitters as the Red Sox breezed to a 6-0 nothing victory at Fenway Park. Don Gullett had a seven hit shutout through six innings before the wheels fell off the wagon in the bottom of the seventh. By the end of the inning, the Reds had used three pitchers in the inning (including Gullett) who gave up six runs on five hits.
The Reds managed a mere five hits, two by Joe Morgan and two by George Foster. The only real threat by the Reds came in the seventh inning. George Foster singled but was caught stealing second base. Ken Griffey then doubled, which probably would have scored Foster. At the time though, the game was scoreless and Sparky was trying to manufacture a run.
National League Championship Series Game 3
October 7, 1975 Reds 5, Pirates 3 (10 innings) Reds Win Best of Five Series 3-0
This game was closer closer then the first two, but the end result was the same despite a change in scenery. This was by far the best game of the 1975 NLCS.
The Pirates took the lead with two runs in the sixth when starter Gary Nolan gave up a two run homer to Al Oliver. With the Reds down 2-1, Sparky went to his pen in the seventh and brought in Clay Carroll.
The Reds finally got back on the board in the eighth. Ken Griffey and Cesar Geronimo both struck out before Merv Rettenmund drew a walk. Then Charlie Hustle came up huge by hitting a two run homer to give the Reds a 3-2 lead.
The Pirates weren’t done. Will McEnaney threw a perfect eighth but gave up a lead off single to Willie Stargell in the bottom of the ninth. Dave Parker struck out and then Sparky went to his closer, Rawly Eastwick. Richie Zisk singled before Manny Sanguillen popped out to third. Eastwick then walked Bob Robertson to load up the bases. Still struggling with his control, Eastwick then walked Duffy Dyer and the tying run crossed the plate. He then got Rennie Stennett to fly out, but the game went into extra frames.
The drama didn’t last two long though. In the top of the tenth, Ken Griffey led off with a single and reliever Ramon Hernandez balked to move him over to second. Cesar Geronimo grounded out and Griffey moved over to third. Eddie Armbrister then flew out to center to score Griffey.
The Reds weren’t quite done though. Still with two outs, Pete Rose singled, then he scored on Joe Morgan’s double. Kent Tekulve came in to get the final out, but by that point, the Reds had all the runs they needed.
Pedro Borbon pitched a perfect ninth and the game was over. It would be the first time since 1970, when the Reds lost to the Orioles, that they’d played in the World Series. The Boston Red Sox swept their series, so the two teams would get three days off before squaring off in the World Series.