REDS – PROUD AND CONCERNED – TIME TO STEP IT UP AGAIN…

It’s a Beautiful Saturday in Maryland – this old Soldier has just finished a nice run over the past 90 minutes – – getting slower and older, but the beautiful blue skies and the 60-70 degree weather is strength to the bones, and to hopes in the world of sports, especially to one who has found the beginning of the 21st Century a little dry and faded. 

Not this year:  College Football is in the air, and I’m cheering on my Crimson Tide of Alabama, and looking to old favorite Buckeyes of Ohio State as well.  Hey, what else can a transplanted Ohioan do? 

This yearFinally – the Baseball Reds of Cincy are finally back in the thick of a pennant race – for the first time in a decade, and the first Winning Season since 2000.  Votto, Rolen, and Comany have kept Reds Fans excited over the 2010 Season.  Now, the bats have gotten a little cold, and they’ve let the Cards dream of a dramactic comeback – time to put their hopes and the stories of choking Mets and Phillies from baseball years, decades gone by to rest. 

I put much, but not all of this message on the Baseball HOF Writer Hal McCoy’s regular blog on the Reds.  Hal McCoy and the great sportswriter of the Dayton Daily News, and this was in response to his Friday article on rookie pitching sensation Arnold Chapman’s first Major League loss – to the Houston Astros.    

 

September 18, 2010 9:33 AM |

Okay, I believe the REDS are going to pull this out, and win the division, but Cordero needs to get his stuff together, and pitch great relief again, and Rolen and Edmonds need to act, behave, and play like the strong Veteran influences they’re supposed to be – now is NOT the time to wither away, and Votto & Company would benefit from their leadership.

Think of Pete Rose with the Phillies in 1980 and Gary Matthews with the Cubs in 1984. Matthews was called “Sarge” during his playing days – Guess who gave him the nickname? The same one he credited with being a great example on the field, in the dugout, and clubhouse as well – PETE ROSE. Hall of Fame Third Baseman Mike Schmidt gives Mr. Rose the ballplayer the same credit, and more – he has given Rose credit for making Schmitty aware of his talents and helping him to become a more complete player. 

Both Charlie Hustle and The Sarge led their teams – with good seasons, but they were both obviously on the downside of their careers.  Still, their presence was felt – and voiced when necessary – no doubt Rose’s voice was loud, booming, and a challenge, while I’m not sure of Matthews.  The Result:  Rose’s hustle and heart helped lead the Phils to their first World Series since 1950, and their first World Series victory EVER.  Matthews’ play and example got the Cubbies within runs and innings to fall just short of a trip to the Fall Classic since 1945 – they still haven’t been to the World Series since that date.   

The point is – Rose and Matthews were LEADERS.  Mr. Rolen and Mr. Edmonds need to do the same, on and off the field. Our Veterans, both with World’s Championship Rings, need to “Step It Up NOW.” I realize Scott Rolen is having a great year – I hope Mr. Edmonds follows his lead, gets better, and contributes more on the field to the Reds’ run while with us.  Scott Rolen has been a solid player all year, and I appreciate his hustle and heart during the 2010 All-Star Game – great headfirst slide.  Had that been done by a Red since Rose and Sabo?  I have my doubts…

Scott Rolen MUST continue to be a strong factor in the Reds Winning in 2010.  I appreciate the fact that it definitely sounds like he’s a better family man than Pete Rose has been known for being.  That will always be a strong factore with me, as I believe a good man must be a solid example on and off the field of sports, business, or for that matter, Soldiering  One’s Family Life says a lot to me about the measure of a man or woman.  I glad that Mr. Rolen finds more time with his family, and it sounds to me like he’s not far from calling it a baseball career – I can say that, as an old Soldier, I wish I had more time with my Boys before they go off to College, and on their own.  As it is, my time with them under my roof is almost done – enjoy your family while they’re young, Mr. Rolen.  You’ll never get lost time with them back, and no honors can replace that. 

BUT…2010 is almost done, so keep up the Good Work.  Rather than just marvel along with Mr. Edmonds on a hungry and young Astros team, you guys need to show those Astros what a young and hungry Winning Team looks like.  I know I’m not a ballplayer, but I’m a fan, and I’m encouraging and challenging you as such.  I want to see my Franchise back in the Postseason on a regular basis once more, and you guys can help do that. 

I remember the Red’s motto from 1975-76 World Championship years – saw this on banners, posters, advertisments.  Based on the legendary Jerry Reed song, It went like this: “When you’re hot, You’re REDS’ HOT!”  Well, it’s time to help this franchise get Hot once again, and PLEASE don’t get hurt/ knocked out of the season in the process. 

Mr. Rolen, I hear of a leadership that’s not led by many words or flag-waving, but by example.  Sounds like a Stan Musial – Joe DiMaggio-type leadership, and those Hall Of Famers could play.  So…that’s great – just keep it up, pick up Jim Edmonds along the way, and Lead The Way Home to the Postseason…and BEYOND.  GO REDS!!!


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CHARLIE HUSTLE LEADING THE PHILS…

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GARY “THE SARGE” MATTHEWS – GLORY DAYS…

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SCOTT ROLEN HUSTLES – LEADS BY EXAMPLE…

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CHARLIE HUSTLE LED BY EXAMPLE, TOO – ON THE FIELD, SCORING BIG RUN

(GAME #4 – 1980 NLCS)

 

***  I enjoyed Mr. Shelton’s blog on MLB.com – I hope he doesn’t mind my using it here, and the timing to my thoughts couldn’t be better, as I just read this minutes ago

 

Reds following Rolen’s lead to verge of playoffs

Veteran’s postseason experience could be key for young club

CINCINNATI — Scott Rolen would love to be able to say he had all of this figured out.

When the third baseman got traded last July 31 from the Blue Jays to the then out-of-contention Reds for three players, he didn’t just return closer to his Indiana home. He’s now with a first-place team on the verge of making the playoffs.

“This time last year, a lot of people thought it was an odd trade,” Rolen said. “I was excited about it because it was back to my comfort zone. It’d be a better story if I said that I was looking at that team and I knew it was going to be great. I’m sorry I can’t get there for you. I got the chance to come as close as I could to home. [Reds GM] Walt [Jocketty] and I, we had a history. He thought I could come here, fit in and we had a good young team. I’m in.”

Great American Ball Park is less than a three-hour drive from the 35-year-old Rolen’s home in Bloomington, Ind. His family, which includes his wife, a five-year-old daughter and three-year-old son, spends homestands with him in Cincinnati and can be in Indiana during road trips. Off-days and nights after day games can offer some stolen moments to see his kids’ soccer games or tuck them into bed. That wasn’t as easy from Toronto, and would have been much harder had he played on one of the coasts.

“On the off-day [next Thursday] after Milwaukee, I’m going home to be with them and meet the team in San Diego. I couldn’t have done this in Toronto,” Rolen said. “[My daughter] Raine was starting school. I can drive home. I’m three hours away. I can fly home. I’ve driven home on off-days when she is in school. We’re together as much as we can possibly be together. When I was younger, I loved playing on the road. I couldn’t wait to get on the road. Now, I second-guess myself every time I’m on the road, like, ‘What am I doing?’ ”

Last winter, Rolen and the Reds re-worked his deal to defer some of his $11 million salary while adding two more years that pay him $6.5 million in each of the next two seasons. His career will conclude in Cincinnati — no matter what.

“I have a complete no-trade clause all the way through. I plan on using it,” Rolen said. “We’ll see how first grade goes and second grade goes. If we can’t catch a break, we’ll home school. We’re going to stay together. That’s the way we like to do it.”

Rolen’s happy home life has equated to a happy work life at the ball yard. He entered Friday batting .292 with 19 home runs, 79 RBIs and a .366 on-base percentage in 120 games. His defense has been superlative enough to warrant a shot at an eighth career National League Gold Glove.

Rolen was on an MVP-candidate pace in the first half of the season, with 17 homers and 57 RBIs. He’s only gone deep twice with 22 RBIs since the All-Star break, but is batting .297 with a .373 OBP over that span. He missed 10 games dealing with a hamstring injury and was out the past two games with neck and back soreness.

With an eye toward helping a young team take a big step forward in 2010, Rolen’s leadership skills were a large part of the thinking behind the trade that brought him to Cincinnati. His style doesn’t fit the traditional view of a leader. There is no flag-waving, no pep talks, no playing the father figure to younger players.

No, Rolen got his leadership chops the old-fashioned way — he earned them. And he expects his teammates to do the same.

“He’s one of those guys that leads by example,” Reds center fielder Drew Stubbs said. “His presence is felt even when he’s not speaking. All of us see what he does on the field. He’s played a long time at this level and still treats it like a he’s a rookie almost. He’s out there playing hard, running hard on every ground ball, grinding out at-bats.”

Rolen’s presence has clearly benefited the Reds, who are 93-60 in games he’s started over the past two seasons. This season, they are 16-17 when he’s not in the starting lineup.

Reds outfielder Jim Edmonds, 40, is seeing Rolen’s imprint on a club for the second time. The two played several seasons together with the Cardinals and went to a pair of World Series together in 2004 and ’06.

“He’s really dry and not overly loud,” Edmonds said. “He’s not yelling and screaming. He’s one of those guys that, when he says something, it means something. That’s kind of what you need.

“No-nonsense. Basically, you have your guys that play every day and you want them to be serious most of the time, play the game and show everybody how it’s meant to be played. Then you can have a castoff to the side or a bench player that’s a little wild or out of control. A team jels that way.”

Rolen’s postseason experience will be invaluable come October for a Reds organization that hasn’t been in the playoffs since 1995. Aside from Rolen and Edmonds, only pitchers Bronson Arroyo and Arthur Rhodes, shortstop Orlando Cabrera, utility man Miguel Cairo and catcher Ramon Hernandez have played in the postseason. The vast majority in the clubhouse will be experiencing it for the first time.

“You can’t talk about it. You just have to live it,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “Then you talk about it if you’re not living it right. That’s the only time you talk about it — if you’re not living the moment right.”

How others rate the Reds’ chances is of little concern to Rolen. He plans to enjoy the postseason, which can only happen by playing free and loose.

“When you get that chance, we’re just all going to throw our gloves in,” Rolen said. “I had two great lessons with postseason experience. [The] 2004 [Cardinals club] was the best team I ever played on. [We had] veterans all the way through, up and down the lineup. I thought we were the best team in baseball, but we were swept by the Red Sox. I remember telling my wife when I got home, ‘I’m not going to win a ring. I don’t know what kind of team we have to have, but I won’t be able to do it.’

“In 2006, with 83 wins, a terrible record in September, backing into the playoffs and we’re supposed to be eliminated in the first round and we kind of walked through it. We didn’t have lights-out hitting, pitching or chemistry. We just got there. Pitchers pitched, hitters hit and fielders fielded for three weeks and boom — ring. What I learned from that is just get there. Let’s not worry about who is matching up with who and what’s the best draw. Just get there.”

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

 

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LETS GO, REDS FANS! GO TO THE BALLPARK, AND SUPPORT YOUR TEAM!!!

Okay, Fans – There are those of us who have always believed that, if the Reds build/have a Winner…the Fans will come.  Okay, the Reds are, at least, 7 games up in First place, and they now have 83 Wins.  They’re an exciting team to watch, but – darn it – Reds Fans NEED to SHOW. 

I know it’s been too many years since the Reds have given fans reason to fill the ballpark, but now they’re UP.  Do you want that to continue, or do you want to return to LOSING?  *

*** The following paragraph comes from a soty written by a St Louis Sportswrite – his name is Bernie Bytes.  The article can be found on: http://www.stltoday.com/sports/columns/bernie-miklasz/article_37732a84-c0e1-11df-a686-00127992bc8b.html – here’s the telling paragraph:

“Another booming crowd in Cincinnati on Tuesday night, as 16,973 Reds fans flocked into the Great American Ball Park. The Reds attracted 12,061 on Monday night. Over their last eight home games, the Reds have averaged 20,859. Why doesn’t Cincinnati care about their first-place team? Why are the Reds drawing such embarrassingly low crowds? The Reds players deserve much better than that. In St. Louis, it’s a different story: the fans that have produced an average of 41,000 per game deserve a better team for their support.”

There you go.  I would follow my own advice and go see a game or two, but I’m just a little too far away – try near Washington, D.C. – How many of you Reds fans have that for an excuse???

The Reds rolled again, 7-5.  Jay Bruce rescued Fransico Cordero – he’s been shaky, to say the least – over the past week.  Jay Bruce, the rightfielder, robbed Adam LaRouche of a HR in the 9th Inning – that kept the Diamondbacks from tying the game.  Mr. Cordero owes Mr. Bruce a very nice dinner tonight – to say the least.  He’s been great in the past month, but this past weekend, and tonight’s game – have not been so great.  The Reds deserve more…so let’s go, Cordero.  Pitch better, and help lead Votto, Gomes, and Company to the Playoffs! 

And Fans – Let’s go to the Ballpark!  The Reds need your support…

Take care, all – God bless you and yours, MLB, and may He Always Bless the USA!

 

 BIG RED MACHINE – RIVERFRONT STADIUM, 1976

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 GREAT AMERICAN BALLPARK, 2002 – NOW (AND FIRST WINNING REDS TEAM – 2010)

RIVERFRONT STADIUM – HOME OF THE REDS, 1970-2002


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AND THIS ONE BELONGS TO THE REDS – WIN #82!!!

YES!  THERE WILL BE NO 10TH LOSING SEASON IN A ROW IN CINCINNATI REDS BASEBALL!!!

Logan Ondrasek just struck out Kelly Johnson, ending the game that results in a great finish with a 7-2 Reds Win.  The Win makes the Reds 82-62, and hopefully the Cards will keep stumbling as the Reds pick up steam – hopefully. 

I said I would be HAPPY with the Reds finishing the season at 82-80.  I AM Happy, but there is obviously some unfinished business – since the Reds have definitely brought FUN back to the Queen City. 

The final numbers:  The Reds had 7 runs on 12 hits with one error.  Branson Arroyo got his 15th win, equalling his best ever.  The Reds slugged 5 HR, led by Jay Bruce with 2 in his first 2 at-bats.  Welcome back, Jay – you were missed. 

After a great weekend, highlighted by remembering those we lost on 9-11-01.  Saturday night, Pete Rose was welcomed back to Cincinnati – thanks to the graces of MLB, Rose was allowed on the field, and it was so GOOD to see him in a Reds jersey again, with the familiar ROSE 14 on the back.  I understand he’s been very contrite lately – many say “too little-too late.”  I just hope he has learned a lot, and shows more humility in the future. 

 It was GOOD to see Rose’s wife Carol at his roast – I hope they’re working things out.  Hey, that’s just the committed married man in me – he needs to stick with the lady who has stood by him through all the betting mess and years from baseball, so Pete owes her.   Okay, enough on Pete. 

These young Reds of 2010 have been great, and give credit where it’s due.  I’ve blasted Mr. Castellini, his GM Mr. Jocketty, and Manager Dusty Baker many times.  Well, they ALL deserve praise and great credit, especially if they do make the Playoffs.  Bruce (2), Stubbs, Votto (MVP-Worthy), and Cabrera all went deep for the Reds.  I’m so PROUD of this team.  I’m going to end it on this note, with a few pictures. 

So…Where is Marty Brennamin?  I really wanted to hear, “And This One Belongs to the Reds”  at the conclusion of this game.  Well, I’ll settle to Win #82.  Here’s hoping for many, many more before 2010 is history.  Maybe the last win will seal a World Championship – Hey I can dream, right???  🙂

GOD BLESS AMERICA, & THE 2010 CINCINNATI REDS, TOO!

 

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THE HIT KING – 4192, 11 SEPTEMBER 1985, RIVERFRONT STADIUM (PADRES’ STEVE GARVEY IN BACKGROUND)

 

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WELCOME BACK, PETE!  11 SEPTEMBER 2010 (Great American Ballpark, Cincinnati, Ohio)

 

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AND A WINNING SEASON BELONGS TO THE REDS!!!  NOW, 82 WINS AND COUNTING – – WHAT FUN!!!

 

AND…ALWAYS – A PAUSE TO REMEMBER — MAY WE NEVER FORGET…

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As Always, A Commitment From Our Men & Women In Uniform.  In Tribute to those who lost their lives on 9-11, and those who have paid the Ultimate Sacrifice for Our Freedom – As well as for those in Iraq and Afghanistan since 9-11 until now. 

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May GOD Always Bless and Protect The Unitied States of America – Take care…

 

THANK YOU, MR. HERNANDEZ & NEW YORK METS…

As a long-time Reds fan – going back to my Big Red Machine, I’ve never been much on the New York Mets.  I still remember those rude Mets fans during the 1973 NLCS, and the Pete Rose – Bud Harrelson fight.  Of course, I remember those same Mets fans – for the most part – filling Shea Stadium during a lousy period in Mets history, in order to graciously cheer Pete Rose with standing ovations when he tied and broke the modern N.L. Hitting Streak record during the summer of 1978; Rose would go on to an N.L. Record 44-Game Hitting Streak. 

I admired the Mets in years to come – when they won the 1986 World Series over the Boston Red Sox.  I felt bad for the Red Sox as well, as they were soooo close to a World’s Championship.  I felt good for Ray Knight and for Keith Hernandez – I was always a grudging admirer of his, and he could play both 1B and the man could hit. 

I would love to say that I enjoyed the 1986 Fall Classic, BUT I was busy as a brand new trainee – I was in Basic Training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, from 17 September – 21 November 1986, so I missed the entire Series.  Actually, I saw about 2 minutes of one game – I was peering in my Drill Sergeant’s office with the game going on one evening.  I got caught, and was lucky I didn’t have to do push-ups.  I had to appreciate MLB’s postseason by reading the newspapers on Sunday – training took up the rest of the week from before sun-up to past sundown. 

As for subsequent years, well…let’s just say it’s been hard to enjoy MLB these past years with the Reds having such a LONG period of losing (since 2000).  I did get to appreciate the 1990 World Champion Reds – once more, from a distance.  This time, I was in Saudi Arabia, as I was called up from my then Tennessee National Guard Unit (130th Rear Area Operations Center) for Operation Desert Shield, later to become Desert Storm.  Sweet Lou Pinella, Barry Larkin, Chris Sabo, the Nasty Boys, and the rest of that great gave me something to cheer about during a tough but victorious period that kept me away from my wife, Lynne for several months. 

I’m still a Soldier, and Lynne and I are still going strong – 21 years now – and I’m having the opportunity these days to work at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.  From time to time, you can see some celebrities come to WRAMC to visit our “Wounded Warriors” – those who have been seriously wounded, injured during our deployments into Harm’s Way.  The Super Bowl Champion New Orleans Saints paid a visit to our Heroes a few weeks ago.  I stay away from these events – the celebrities come to see “Our Celebrities,” and I’m strong in my beliefs that “it’s not about me.” 

Well, just a few days ago, I saw some familiar faces in civilian dress walking outside towards our main pavilon, hospital building – I was returning from visiting patients, Etc.  These guys came in large groups – big giveaway.  They were wearing different modes of neat attire – from suits to blue jeans, and they had hospital reps with them.  They were clearly V.I. Guests. 

I did recognize the Met’s manager, Jerry Manuel – can’t mistake him, and said hello.  He smiled back and returned my greeting – very kind man, and I was very appreciate of their visit. 

BUT…the one ballplayer – out of all the stars who were there, and I believe I recognized David Wright and others as well – was a great NY Met from the past – Keith Hernandez. 

I wasn’t carrying a pen on my uniform – of all the times – and I asked a fellow Soldier to borrow a pen and I asked another for a scrap of paper.  I got an index card, and I covered the 50 or so yards in no time – thank God for Army training/staying in decent shape.  I got to Mr. Hernandez in just enough time before they entered the back of the building.

Keith Hernandez has aged some – like the rest of us, but he’s done it with grace; there’s no doubt who he is today.  I called out his name, and he turned around.  I quickly asked for his autograph, and he graciously supplied it.  I thanked Mr. Hernandez and the rest of the Mets for coming to see our Soldiers, and I left.  They had important people to see…

Mr. Hernandez, if you read this, or someone alerts you to this, “Thank YOU, Sir, and the Rest of the Mets.  As for your signature, I’m not one of those fans who will “turn a kindness into a buck.”  In fact, I’m giving your autograph, along with a good photo I can purchase, and card – to my eldest son.  Will is an Army ROTC Cadet at a University in Illinois.  I’m very PROUD of Will, and my younger son, Bobby – They are my Heroes.   Will is a big baseball fan, and I want him to have a great autograph of a great ballplayer. 

People go out of their way to speak about how athletes and other celebrities can be rude and self-seeking.  Well, here at Walter Reed, I get the opportunity to see some selflessness from great celebrities from time to time.  When I hear of great baseball players, I’ll always Keith Hernandez – for his great play on the field, and his many clutch hits and solid career.  

Still, Keith Hernandez, for all his accolades, will always be TOPS in my book – for taking time to visit America’s Heroes…and for giving an old fan an autograph. 

Keith Hernandez & the New York Mets: This Old Soldier Salutes YOU.  God bless you and yours. 

 

More on the Cardiac Reds tomorrow, or soon – always busy at WRAMC, and this shows in very few blogs over the year.  Oh well…Great 2010 Season so far.  Don’t lose hope, Votto and Company – keep your heads up.  2010 has been really Fun!

 

GREAT MOMENT IN REDS’ HISTORY: Pete Rose hustles around the bases with clenched fist in the 12th Inning, after hitting what became the game-winning HR against Mets at Shea Stadium, Game #4, 1973 NLCS – Shea Stadium, October 1973.

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GREAT MAY – GO REDS!

“Who would have thought it?”  I’m rather impressed with Votto, Rolen, Phillips, Gomes, Bruce, and most of the entire pitching staff, headed by that young rookie sensation Mike Leake.  Leake is now 4-0, with another quality start while besting tough Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright this past Saturday night. The 22-year-old Leake gave up two earned runs and four hits over six innings with three walks and five strikeouts. MLB.COM notes that Leake is the first Reds pitcher to begin his big league career 4-0 since Santo Alcala and Pat Zachary both did it in 1976 – Now, that’s impressive.

Reds first 40 games of 2010:

W   L   PCT  GB  (Record v. Central Opponents)

23  17  .575    0     16-10

Of course, the Reds are in 1st Place, 1/2 game ahead of LaRussa’s Cardinals.  Let me say this – I’m PROUD of Baker and the Reds thus far. 

This is my first entry of, not only the season, but of all 2010.  Not much to say for that, except I’ve been staying busy with the real world – my job and responsibilities.  Working for the good old USA will shortly put me “Inside the Beltway.”  Well, I can see some Nationals baseball from time to time. 

Gotta run – Great job, Reds – Definitely looks like Cincy Baseball is “Getting back to fun again.”  Even your hustle looks somehow…familiar.  Pete should be proud, and I’m still sore at Charlie Hustle for his very poor judgment in December through now.  Still, the man could play baseball. 

 

 

 

 

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GROW UP, PETE!

Anyone who has spent a few minutes looking at this blog knows that I’m a Pete Rose/Big Red Machine fan.  Charlie Hustle, a.k.a. The Hit King, has always been my favorite baseball player.  The man simply got the job done on the field, and was darned exciting to watch. 

Unfortunately, Pete Rose has also been about as embarrassing off the field as he has been exciting on it.  I won’t even touch the betting on baseball, or 14 years of lies he told in denial.  Let’s see: There’s a (1) Paternity Suit back in January 1979, which he settled; (2) multiple affairs on his first wife, Karolyn; (3) Same on his second wife, Carol. 

NOW, Mr. Rose is obviously forgetting his age (68).  He’s forgetting the vows he made to his 2nd wife – Hey, I wonder if Rose even had vows to her.  On top of that, he’s dating a woman who was running around in diapers when he was setting MLB records.  Now, he’s talked his girlfriend into trying to get a audition for Playboy Magazine.  Sorry, Pete – This fan is disgusted in your behavior, and I’m sure I’m NOT alone.   

GROW UP, PETE!  I remember when Mr. Rose admitted in an interview – with an allusion to his betting on baseball – that he’had done some things his father wouldn’t be proud of.  Guess “Old Grandad” can add another tale to his hall of shame story. 


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Wonder If Your Dad and Ty Are Looking Down On This Great Moment, Pete…

 

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Rose and His Dad – c.1969

When Mr. Rose’s father, Harry “Big Pete” Rose, died in December 1970, it seemed that all the stops came off in the Pete Rose’s life – as far as acting his age, and remembering he had responsibilities to his family…and his fans.  Rose the ballplayer seemed to just get better with age – over many years.  He was invaluable as a teammate, and he helped push other stars to be their very best – just ask Joe Morgan, Johnny Bench, and Mike Schmidt, to name a few.   

Rose just seemed to remain a perpetual teenager.  Until recently, it seemed that he was acting his age the past several years.  Well, “Rose-Hefner” has gone back to his teens once more, thanks to this sad tale.  Isn’t Charlie Hustle a little O-L-D for yet another mid-life crisis?  What of his wife, Carol Rose, who has stood by his side since April 1984, when they got married.  She’s been there during Rose’s fall from baseball grace as well.  Doesn’t she count for something, Pete?  Why isn’t your wife your girlfriend, too???   This tale, in my opinion, is a disgrace.  

I’ve defended Pete Rose on countless occasions.  Now, I don’t know whether I feel more disgust or pity for the man.   Has Mr. Rose NO shame these days? 

I hope Pete gets a wake-up call about his attitude, though I seriously doubt he’ll take it.  I’m sure this stupidity really appeals to MLB Commissioner Bud Selig, as well as Bob Feller, Johnny Bench, Stan Musial, Joe Morgan, and several other Hall Of Famers.  Just when it seems more sympathy could be there for Charlie Hustle to somehow have a chance to make it back into baseball’s good graces before he dies, he pulls another trick out of his bag of STUPID Stunts. 

In closing, I’ve often told my Sons (now ages 18 and 16), to play sports like Pete Rose played baseball, giving 110% on every play.  Unfortunately, I’ve had to tell my boys to NEVER play the game of life like Pete Rose.  Pete Rose on the field is worth emulating; off the field, he’s worth forgetting. 

My boys will see me, through 20-plus years of marriage, multiple deployments during times of war, and more – with a marriage that is happy, healthy, and intact, and I hope I’ve been a good father as well.  I’m no saint, and I couldn’t play baseball today to save my life – but I pray I’m a much better example on how they should live their lives, love their families…and keep their dignity intact.  I’ll take my Wife and Family over Pete Rose, his records, and his feet of clay, a.k.a. stupid decisions everyday of the week, and twice on Sundays.  That’s an understatement.   

I would really LOVE to be PROUD of you again one day, PETE.  That’s not looking good lately…

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BETTER DAYS FOR CHARLIE HUSTLE…1971, Spring Training

NOVEMBER 2009 MUSINGS – Veteran’s Day, Thanksgiving…

Well, sitting here on a nice, cool, cloudy Saturday Afternoon.  I’ve got a chance to breathe and relax a bit; it’s been a hectic week.  That’s PAR for the course in the U.S. Army, but I’m Thankful right now to be Home with my Family and not Deployed.  Can’t say where I’ll be in a year – God knows, and Uncle Sam will tell me in a few months…

I regret not posting something for Veteran’s Day.  God bless those who have served – and serve today – our Great Nation in Her time of need.  Freedom is NEVER Free, and the men and women who have sacrificed time away from families and friends in order to “stand guard over our Freedoms and Freedoms around the world” are the real Heroes in my book. 

In my opinion, Baseball Players – and even Hall Of Famers – pale in comparison to our Men and Women In Uniform since the beginning of the USA.  Of course, there are so many Patriots ballplayers from decades past who served, like Yogi Berra, Joe DiMaggio, Bob Feller,Ted Williams, and so many more during WW2, Korean War, and more.  They sacrificed time – and stats – to serve our Country.  Joltin Joe might have gotten 3,000 hits had he not lost years of service – and nearly 450-500 HR, and Teddy Ballgame would have easily gotten well over 3,000 himself, and a few more battling titles.  600 Homers would have been possible, too.  Bob Feller would have easily notched 300 wins, and perhaps a Cy Young Award or two. 

The coolest thing about Mr. Feller – though I disagree with his stand against Pete Rose – He and countless other ballplayers like him have NO regrets in serving.  Bob Feller enlisted in the Navy right after Japan attacked Pearl Harbor.  May GOD bless all Veterans, Soldiers – Past and Present – for their Sacrifices to Our Nation, and their families as well. 


 
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I just made a little Breakfast/Brunch for my Sons – A Father’s happy duty from time to time, and my teenage boys love it.   Lynne, my Wife, is picking up some groceries; she’s great on making breakfast, but HATES eggs.  I’m sparing her this Sat. Morning fun. 

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you – yes, I’m early, but I am Thankful for so much that GOD (Yes, GOD) has blessed me and mine with.  Okay, I’m NOT including the Reds’ losing streak, but I’m not blaming GOD for the actions of Reds’ owners and management over the years.  Yes, I’m Thankful that my Thanksgiving this year is spent with my Family and not on Deployment.  I’ve spent plenty Holidays away, so I’m grateful that’s not the case in 2009. 

I do get a little tired of the history revisionists that all but ignore the Pilgrims and their first winter/year on this new land.  They worked well with the Indians, for instance, but they were not saved by them.  Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamation (from October 1863):

I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the City of Washington, this Third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the United States the Eighty-eighth.

By the President: Abraham Lincoln (William H. Seward, Secretary of State)

 


 May we always be Thankful to GOD for His Blessings to us – HAPPY THANKSGIVING, and GOD Bless America! 

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