By Thaq Diesel
Alas, it’s my first entry as a writer for Reds Cutting Edge. As an introduction to all of you and to provide insight into my perspectives, I give you a brief history of me as a baseball fan.
Though it seems to be a dying practice with today’s youth, like most 30-something men I played Little League as a youngster. I played for the Fort Myers Giants and North Fort Myers Royals as second base and outfield. The Kansas City Royals were a decent team then (mid-80’s) so it was an exciting time to be a baseball fan.
My favorite team growing up was the Atlanta Braves. Keep in mind that at the time, other than the baseball game of the week on Saturdays, the only baseball you could see in Florida was on TBS. Dale Murphy was my favorite player by far; I consider it a crime that the steroid-padded standards for the hall of fame will prevent this two-time MVP’s entry. I hold sacred my personally-autographed Dale Murphy baseball, which my wife has tried to throw away twice. (I’ll admit that in my youth, I was pursuaded to use it to play outside once because nobody had a ball. I still feel somewhat sick when I see the faint dirt marks on the ball) I moved to Ohio in 1987 and have loyally followed the Reds since then.
As for this blog, I will bring to you my insights into the Reds, its place in baseball as a small-market team, and my favorite Reds memories (which will obviously be post-1987, but will be vivid nonetheless). Despite what looks to be a bleak pitching staff in 2006, I will do my best to not be overly negative. It’s pretty obvious how the past few years have made Marty Brennaman a grouchy dude. And I may throw in some fun minutiae every once and a while to keep things interesting. Did you know, for example, that the bronze statue of Joe Nuxhall on Crosley Terrace was sculpted so you could put a beer in his left hand and a cigarette in his right (in honor of Joe’s two biggest passions?). One of my college friends is the twin brother of Tom Tsuchiya, who sculpted the lifelike statue of Joe and shared that fun piece of info with me.
Thanks for reading and I look forward to sharing the coming season with you.