Every day there are three things, here are those three things.
1) Bryan Price, Master Of The Obvious. I shook off the warnings that I'd melt if I went outside and attended the latest lopsided Reds loss at GABP. The company was good. The beer was cold. The hot dogs were tasty. The script was familiar.
The Reds have been outscored, um, 46-14 during their current five-game losing streak.
Can training camp start early?
Fortunately, we have some profound words from the skipper...
“These last 10 weeks are very important because I think we have to have a vision of what our starting rotation is going to look like in 2018, but we have to have that vision in 2017," manager Bryan Price said. “I think it's going to be very difficult to come in and say, talk about, being really competitive if the vision isn't — if we don't know what 2018 is going to look like, at least from the outset.”
You don't say?
I went off on a mini-rant on having rebuild fatigue Monday's radio show, then wrote about changing poo-y diapers when describing how I feel about the Reds yesterday because I, probably like you, am frustrated.
Not with the losing, although that's getting very old very quickly, but with the fact that here we are relatively deep into the big rebuild, and we're all still trying to figure out who can pitch, who can pitch well, and who can pitch really, really well. Until we know these things, the 90+ loss seasons will mount. So will the frustration.
So will the impatience.
The uncertainty surrounding starting pitching renders all the other stuff - the cultivation of a pretty decent every day eight, the improvement of the bullpen, the mostly solid work done by the manager - as useless as a GABP ticket-taker in October.
We're full years from the completion of the Cueto trade and the trio of pitchers obtained from Kansas City has yielded one decent Brandon Finnegan season. We're three years into Anthony DeSclafani's time as a Red and it's fair to wonder if we've already seen his best. No one has any real idea if Homer Bailey will be the pitcher we'd hoped. And more than a season and a half after he made his big league debut, Robert Stephenson is - for some reason buried in Louisville.
There's a lot of names - Rookie Davis, Amir Garrett, Luis Castillo, and last night's sacrificial lamb, Sal Romano, to recite a few - that may end up being owned by successful big league pitchers. Guys like Stephenson and Reed could ultimately deliver on the hype that used to accompany them. Their injured guys might be healthy one day. But that's a lot of may, could, and might.
I'm more interested in is, should, and will be.
2) It's all about the well-being of the student-athlete, right?
3) Bengals Top 50. Players 20-11 were revealed today, leaving it pretty obvious that the top ten will consist of the following names (listed here in no particular order)...
Munoz, Anderson, Esiason, Johnson, Fulcher, Collinsworth, Krumrie, Brooks, Curtis and Breech.
OK, I'll bite. If I'm ranking those ten players, I'm going Munoz, Anderson, Johnson, Esiason, Curtis, Brooks, Fulcher, Collinsworth, Krumrie, and Breech, but if I was ranking the full 50, neither Breech, Collinsworth, or Krumrie are in the top ten....
Anyway, James and I discussed the James Brooks/Corey Dillon debate he and Lance got into, and we came up with the "next five," the five best players that won't be included in the first 50. Listen...
If anything, what the Bengals are doing with this list of 50 retired players shows the value in promoting/discussing/celebrating your history. It creates conversations, ones that are more fun to have than the ones we're having about the Reds right now.
Recommended Link Of The Day: From the 10th until it mercifully ends: How each extra inning is completely different.
Radio Show: Returns tomorrow on ESPN1530. Bengals legend Ken Anderson will join me at 4:05, and college football expert Phil Steele is at 3:20. I'm filling in on 105.7 The Zone in Columbus tomorrow morning as well, 6:00 'til 9:00. I like doing radio shows.