Mo Egger

Mo Egger

Mo Egger delivers his unique take on sports on Cincinnati's ESPN 1530!Full Bio


Some Stuff: Price Deserves Better Than Larkin Lobbying For His Job

(Photo: Getty Images)

Bryan Price will begin his fifth season as the Manager of the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday, a season that might represent his best chance of actually winning more games than he loses, which is a problem, because chances are that Price's team will still lose more often than it wins. 

A lot of things have happened during Price's tenure in Cincinnati, an era marked by the dismantling of the playoff teams of 2010-2013 and the slow rebuild toward future contention at some point in what we hope is the not-too distant future.  Through it all, he's managed to hang on to his gig even though the team hasn't won much, mainly because - even if they won't admit it - the Reds have never given Bryan Price a fair chance to actually win.

But year five, even with a reasonably steadier roster than the ones he's been handicapped with through his first four seasons, might be Price's biggest challenge yet.  With no contract for 2019, Price is being charged with having to achieve significantly better results this season than after overseeing three straight seasons of 94 losses or more, all while continually having to sift through a ton of uncertainties on the pitching staff.  And he's going to have to deal with one of the franchise's icons.

Let's call what Barry's doing what he's actually doing.  The guy is publicly campaigning for Bryan Price's job. Read this Cincinnati Enquirer piece from January. Watch this Fox 19 feature from this weekend. Tell me what other conclusion there is to draw other than that the hall of famer is publicly posturing to one day be employed as the Manager of the Reds, which is, you know, a job that's not open right now. 

Barry might one day be a very, very good big league manager. Connecting the dots, that could happen year, maybe quite soon.  But until it does, does it do anyone any good to have the guy who'd almost certainly be a candidate to be Bryan Price's replacement openly lobbying for the job while he's working for the team and while Price heads into an already pressure-filled season that, even without Larkin speaking so freely, has his job hanging in the balance?

I'm as big of a Barry Larkin fan as you'll find, but to me, Barry's public lobbying is neither befitting someone of his stature, nor is it very sensitive to the already-difficult job Bryan Price has in front of him.

And it sure as hell isn't the kind of thing that makes me think that Barry Larkin is really, really ready to manage the Reds.

That's not to say that I don't believe that Barry can be an effective big league manager. Everything about him as a player suggested that he could one day succeed in the dugout, and if the job does become available, his working relationship with some of the team's younger players will have to be considered during what's hopefully an exhaustive search.  But while some of the game's most interesting managers might be willing to say whatever is on his mind, the best ones aren't, and the most effective ones aren't publicly stirring up issues that are best kept private.  

Bryan Price might not ultimately deserve a sixth season managing the Reds. He does deserve a fifth season in which he's given the best chance possible to earn more time on the gig. He absolutely doesn't deserve to have Barry Larkin getting people talking even more about how he could do it better. 

Bryan Price has never really had a chance to win here. If this is indeed his final season, then he deserves to at least have it play out in peace. Every time Barry Larkin speaks, things get a little less peaceful for the guy Barry's campaigning to replace. 

Here's some stuff...

As #MackWatch drags on, with a conclusion that seems less and less likely to involve Chris Mack returning to Xavier I wrote for The Athletic about how Chris' ability and willingness to connect with fans, the Xavier community and the city will, along with his actual basketball coaching ability, make his shoes very tough to fill.  Give it a read

Then, think of Chris Collins of Northwestern.  When you're done doing that, think of Tommy Amaker of Harvard.  I think Collins would be an intriguing, almost ideal, candidate for a potential XU head coaching position. Amaker less so.  But, I don't know, consider and think about those coaches. Then think of Xavier. Do that for me, will ya?

I didn't do a blog yesterday, because I needed another day to cool off after watching Leonard Hamilton destroy my Michigan -4.5 wager by not fouling in the game's final 11 seconds.  

College basketball is the best when the kids take center stage.  College basketball is the worst when the adults ruin it.  College basketball is just fine when we focus on the games.  College basketball is a disaster when we see how corrupt it often is. Adults screw up everything. 

This year's NCAA Tournament has been spectacular, chock full of interesting storylines, great games (I'll watch Duke/Kansas on my DVR when I need a fix this summer), interesting people, and memorable moments.  The games themselves are still so good that we're willing to put up with all the BS, 99 percent of which is created by the coaches, agents, administrators, etc. You know, the adults.

You wouldn't know it by listening to the people who scream about the NBA on TV talk about the same four teams, but the Indiana Pacers have been one of the top three stories in the NBA this season, heading into their final eight games with a decent shot at the four seed, and a bit of an outside shot at the three. People who only get their NBA on those aforementioned shows probably can't name more than one Pacer, but Victor Oladipo and friends have authored a really fun season in our closest NBA city, a year after losing their franchise player.  A Philly/Indy first-rounder, which is very, very likely, would be a blast. 

Smart people sometimes have really dumb ideas.  This would be a case of that happening.  I don't need to elaborate. 

Remember guys, it's all about doing what's best for the student-athlete.

Here's some more stuff....

There's nothing wrong with getting intoxicated, but the line does have to be drawn at making lewd comments toward the Easter Bunny

Yes, there's more than one way to win a national title

Hell yes! The Columbus Blue Jackets are Stanley Cup contenders

All bars should absolutely do these two things

Me being a Knicks fan, this hurts, but why not: Get ready for the Pacers, America

Radio Show: We'll call today a work in progress, much like the Suspension Bridge. Join me at 3:05 on ESPN1530. 

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