Harrison celebrates after winning the first judo gold in U.S. history. (US PRESSWIRE)

The Utility Player: Frazier and ROY Love, Health, and a New Machine?


Some would say it’s about time. While I would agree, I knew it would eventually arrive.

(Frank Victores-US PRESSWIRE)

“It” would be talk about Todd Frazier and the National League Rookie of the Year talk. For the majority of the first half of this season, it was all about Bryce Harper. Well, with Harper slumping in the second half, Frazier’s name is getting a little more mention. There’s no question he’s been a major contributor for the Reds this season. And that would be not only on the field, but off as well.

And The Mothership finally joined the Frazier for ROY campaign last night. Both Karl Ravech and Steve Berthiaume gave the ToddFather his well overdue mention. Even Barry Larkin did a quick spot on Frazier and how he swings the bat. But Lark was faced with a dilemma. He wasn’t sure if he should use a bat or a glove since Frazier does it all.

Just as we’d like to believe the Reds have the division won, same for Frazier and NL ROY. There are two months left and a lot of baseball remaining. Wade Miley of Arizona, Jordan Pacheco of Colorado, and Mike Fiers and Norichika Aoki of Milwaukee are all worthy of mention for the award.

Go ahead, ask me. Ask me how I knew the national types would eventually see Frazier as a legit NL ROY guy. The same happened in 2010 with Votto and the NL MVP. Not a whole lot out there at the All-Star break. After that, Votto, who made the All-Star Game on the Final Vote and the now famous “Vote Votto” campaign (or on Twitter, #VoteVotto), started to get a push from the media. Votto received 31 of 32 1st place votes for the 2010 NL MVP.

Seeing the same with Frazier. SI.com has a piece about Frazier. I had done a post during the All-Star break. The mentions last night. Starting to look a lot like 2010.

And notice the spelling: F-R-A-Z-I-E-R. Frasier is a character that was played by Kelsey Grammer.

Walking Wounded

With Devin Mesoraco being placed on the special 7-day disabled list which was setup to be used for those with concussion symptoms, we hope that the disabled list won’t have to be used for Brandon Phillips and his gimpy left calf. We also hope that all is well concerning Wilson Valdez and his neck. And that’s something we honestly haven’t seen much in 2012.

A rash of injuries within a short period of time.

It did happen during spring training with Ryan Madson, Nick Masset and Bill Bray. Madson will never throw an MLB pitch for the Good Guys. Masset may be a little over a week away from returning. Bray is now a second time resident of the DL. Scott Rolen has spent a pair of stints on it, too. We all know of Votto.

If BP is unable to go this weekend and ultimately placed on the DL, the entire right side of the infield (and a Gold Glove winning right side at that) will be on the mend. The positive side (and there is one) is that Votto will be returning soon.

We’ve already seen this team adjust and play winning baseball without Votto. And be honest. You did not see this massive winning from the Reds. As Votto pointed out in this video, the guys are playing as they should. If this is the case, all should be well.

Yes, a lot of “ifs” there.

One other note. With Mesoraco receiving a three game suspension for his “mishap” with umpire Chad Fairchild, Mes cannot serve those three games and be on the DL at the same time.

Is It Really Baseball Season?

Here we are with two months remaining in the regular season and ESPN has decided to set up shop at…

…the New York Jets training camp? Worldwide leader of what, Tebow-mania?

I can see the “rabbit season”, “duck season” debate in central offices in Bristol.

This is simply absurd. About half of baseball’s teams are still alive for the postseason and we hear about a 2nd string QB running around without his shirt as the “news” of the day? And it’s not just me…or you…for that matter, that is tired of this.

Eesh. When one of your own is throwing his hands in the air…

#NewRedMachine

So apparently this new hashtag is all the rage. Honestly, I don’t see this hashtag a whole lot, but this could also be some sort of Mothership ploy to garner more attention. If that’s the case, it worked perfectly. Within minutes of Berthiaume mentioning this hashtag, Twitter completely blew up with its use.

And I can only shake my head because of it.

I have no issue referring to this team as the New Red Machine. What might become an issue will be when the Reds arrive at a time when they aren’t playing so well. Most “experts” will tell you a roll that the Reds are currently on is usually followed up by not-so-stellar play. That will be the true test. Who will use it then?

And…who will continue to do so after 2012 if the Reds don’t win it all or even reach the World Series. No, not being negative. Being practical.

Harrison Makes History

So let’s say you’re extremely excited about Middletown native Kayla Harrison in winning the gold medal in judo. Add that she is the first American to ever win judo gold, man or woman, would make you prouder.

Harrison’s road to London wasn’t exactly an easy ride. In fact, it was rather bumpy…and that is an intended understatement.

If you don’t know the background info, there are plenty of websites to get that info. Here’s one of many that has it. That link will take you to an article by Sean Deveney of The Sporting News. I highly recommend it.

While some are still reeling over Penn State and the Jerry Sandusky trial, Harrison saw the coverage of such as an opportunity to divulge a dark part of her own past. After receiving her gold, Harrison could not sum it up any better.

“In my own journey, you know, when you reach a goal like this, when you become an Olympic champion, it is only natural to look back and to reflect and to look at everything you have been through,” she said. “It just makes me that much—I don’t know if this is weird to say—it just makes me that much more proud of myself. I have overcome a lot. I have faced a lot.”

– Kayla Harrison, Olympic gold medal winner and Middletown native

Congrats, Kayla! You have every right to be proud of yourself.

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Tags: Aaron Boone Baseball Brandon Phillips Cincinnati Reds Devin Mesoraco ESPN Joey Votto Judo Kayla Harrison MLB New Red Machine New York Jets NL Central Tim Tebow Todd Frazier