The Prelude


I wonder if this is the same way fans of the Yankees and Red Sox feel. The sense that a series that could spark an even more intense hatred. The feeling that a series would bring momentary bragging rights. The satisfaction that arrives upon defeating a vaunted foe. It’s only a three game series, but somehow, it feels much more than that.

Today, the Reds and Cardinals will commence in a series that has only recently developed into one of bad blood. It took three little words from Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips. The fireworks have spewed ever since. And I get a sense that this series means as much to fans it is does for the teams that will actually be involved. And Phillips is not flinching one bit either.

As you might expect, the Twitterverse has become completely immersed in a Reds and Cards fans swapping of ill words toward the other. You sit back, read the tweets, and shake your head for many reasons.

Some of the comments from the other side of the fence are, as you would expect, hateful. Some, really are downright hilarious. I find it funny that a person would post such flaming tweets and wonder why he/she is receiving hate tweets in return. Hmm. Let me think. But I always enjoy reading that one tweet that involves a substantial amount of creativity even if it was one posed in ill-will toward the Reds. I do admire a dry and well thought out funny one.

But Reds fans, don’t you dare respond in a negative fashion even if it’s to a negative tweet, comment or statement. You simply can’t. Why? Because then you are the one labeled as having no class. Funny how this all works, isn’t it? We’re considered as having no class but their endless foray of Reds hatred and negativity is just fine. I know a few Reds fans that engage in the “Cards suck” mode, but not near the number coming from the other direction. Called illiterate? At least I know how to spell the word “me”.

About a week ago I was tweeting with a Reds fan and he informed me that you simply cannot have an intelligent baseball discussion with a Cardinals fan. We have a few that stop by here, and I can only think of one in that light. I guess that’s the difference about having your discussion on Twitter versus having one here (shameless plug).

Anyway, I proceeded to ask him what was the topic. His reply was that none was ever established, and all the Cards fans wanted to talk about were: the Reds being no-hit in the NLDS, the number of World Series the Cards have won, and the Reds only won last the NL Central year because the Cards hit that slump.

If I may…

The no-hitter was an oddity in a statistical and historic sense. Yes, it happened. Didn’t want to see it happen to the Reds, but it was a historic occasion. It was only one game and a helluva an effort by Halladay. A game that I really don’t believe the Reds completely got over in any sense (That’s just me). One I will never forget watching, for both good and bad. And yes, the Reds had the “deer in the headlights look” through all three games (Let the Jay Bruce jokes begin).

But you then cannot say your team would have done any better. Why? You didn’t get there. You had your chance after a three-game sweep in Cincinnati last August and the wheels fell off. The Reds replaced their wobbly ones and rode them to the division title.

The number of World Series wins is a fact that cannot be argued so why waste your breath. As the common phrase is today, “It is was it is”. That’s something each Reds fan must deal with on a personal level. It’s a simple truth in which there is no point in even getting caught up in a online trade of characters. See how I deal with that?

A slump prevented the Cards from winning the division? That is hardly correct and a point I can and will openly debate. While the Reds were an ugly 6-12 against the Cards last season, the Reds managed to take care of the rest of the division. St. Louis did not. Against the Cubs, Cincy was 12-4, St. Louis was 6-9. As for the Astros, the Reds were 10-5, the Cards were 5-10. And what about the Brewers? Cincinnati was 11-3 while St. Louis was 7-8. And even after being swept in Pittsburgh in mid-April, the Reds still managed a 10-6 record against the Pirates. The Cards also posted a winning record in going 9-6 against Pittsburgh. That’s how the Reds won the division last year. It was not a slump.

Yes, I completely realize it was last year, and this is a new year. I turned my calendar like everyone else did.

The point I’ve always found fascinating about these exchange of views is that when you in an online argument with someone, nothing can be settled. Nothing will ever be settled even if the facts are right in front of you. You have your stance, the other fanbase has theirs. We’ve even had that happen within the comments section on here previously. Rarely does one change their opinion of their team.

So why the charade?

It’s not a charade and the reason is simple.

We’re fans of the Reds. Love us or hate us.