I Know I Should Be Ecstatic


…but I’m really not.

Sure, today is Opening Day. Sure, it was nice watching the parade both on my computer and TV. Sure, there was the pregame honor of watching Joey Votto receive his 2010 NL MVP Award. Sure, Reds fans witnessed another great and improbable comeback by the Reds on that Ramon Hernandez walk-off, three-run homer. But…I still feel a little sad.

The sadness (and it really is a little) hit about an hour before the game. That sadness is that someone, somewhere in their infinite wisdom robbed Cincinnati of a great honor. The honor of beginning the baseball season. Instead of Edinson Volquez (and a few other Reds pitchers before him) tossing the first pitch of the entire baseball season, that honor went to former Cap’n Crunch addict CC Sabathia of the New York Yankees. And after I realized that, that sadness turned to anger. Especially when I saw this tweet…

Huh? Opening Day IS the Cincinnati Reds. Ask any player that has played for Cincinnati and he will tell you. And ask a player that has played for Cincinnati and any other MLB team and you’ll get the same response. As Scott said in his guest post, it’s “a rite of passage”.

Call it sour grapes, but we all know why this decision was most likely made…$$. Freakin’ greed. Someone with a suit decided that a big market should be the host of such an honor. Why not the Yankees for this season? I mean that franchise does have 27 WS wins. I get the overall schematics of the situation. It’s just another case of the perceived “haves” and “have-nots”. Big market, small market. It flat out sucks.

I mean, who would want to watch the Reds, right? The Yankees are a much bigger draw on TV. Higher ratings = high revenue from ads. It’s simple marketing. If certain people (maybe some in Bristol) had done proper research (and maybe gotten their heads out of the Big Apple’s ass), they would have realized that the Cincinnati Reds were 4th overall in TV ratings last season. The three teams ahead of them (as I have noted previously) were St. Louis, Minnesota and Philadelphia. The largest market there is Philly and they do love their Phils. Just like Cincy loves its Reds.

And I’ll put this thought out there as well. What was one of baseball’s best stories of 2010? IT WAS THE REDS!

But that’s not even an issue either with those that hold the TV contracts or those that make the ultimate decision. (Yes, I’m pointing a finger at you, Mr. Commissioner.) I’m tired of hearing how baseball is losing viewership and that interest is ever so slowly waning. That’s because the current methods aren’t working. You would think instead of giving $25 million to the Mets last November that baseball would use that money to possibly develop a better business model.

Wait. A New York team (singular) is more important that the league (29 teams, plural).

You can call this move to take that ceremonial first pitch of the baseball season away from Cincinnati a marketing move if you wish. I call it unadulterated bullshit.