First, I would like to apologize to my readership. Which, at this rate, will stand at roughly 80,000 annually (if this were a leap year).
Tomorrow will celebrate my ten-day anniversary as a hardcore, bare-knuckled journalist for this fine site.
While I do hold my head high. I also have regrets, both in my articles and in some comments I have made.
To the Reds' fans who hang onto my every word, my deepest sorrows concern my anti-Edwin Encarnacion sentiment.
I have not once, but twice, written anti-Edwin comments while praising the virtues of the Jerry Hairston Jr./Adam Rosales combo.
I now know that I am wrong.
This epiphany came to me during the bottom of the eighth inning inthe Thursday afternoon contest against the Washington Nationals.
Even though Rosales was not charged with the error that cost our boys a win, the radio announcers said he had a shot at blocking the throw from Brandon Phillips.
Marty Brennaman and Jeff "The Cowboy" Brantley are obvious readers of my insightful comments because I swear that I heard Brennaman mutter underneath his breath, "Illya, did you get that? We need Edwin."
The Reds' only plated nine runs during the three-game series against the pitching staff ranked last in the majors. And it took 12 innings to get two of those runs.
That's 2.7 runs per 9 innings—disgraceful.
Not that Edwin would have been able to do anything on that particular play, but perhaps he could have produced at least a run or two during the game.
I know that pre-injury Edwin had been flopping worse than an auto-industry bailout, but Rosales is only 10 for his last 60 at bats.
And fans, check my comments. Never once did I question Edwin's glove.
He is one of the most underrated defensive third baseman in the game. Yes, he makes errors. But I can live with those errors, knowing he makes plays that leave 85 percent of other major league third baseman licking their lips.
So what to do assuming Edwin gets healthy soon, and unfortunately, assuming we wont have Joey Votto back until next year? Edwin can't play first like Rosy.
Ship Rosales back to Louisville, and ship Mike Lincoln to Uzbekistan. No team needs to carry 13 pitchers, and besides I hear the Tashkent team is looking for a washed-up reliever.
Make Ramon Hernandez your everyday first baseman and Ryan Hanigan your everyday catcher. Recall Wilkin Castillo to spell Hanigan behind the dish.
With Hernandez solely concentrating on first base, he's not going to need many days off—when he does throw Hairston over there.
So again, I deeply regret doubting the Edwin believers.
My second apology is solely directed to the family Reds' skipper, Mr. Johnnie B. "Dusty" Baker Jr.
Dusty, I am not sure if you read my Wednesday piece entitled, "Even Dusty Baker Can't Help the Nats Win"—I know I would stray away from a negatively titled article.
I called you a moron for bringing Coco Cordero back out to pitch after sitting through a two-plus hour rain delay. Upon hearing your explanation I recant:
"That’s similar to a closer closing both ends of a doubleheader... Bottom line, we won."
To Melissa, your lovely wife, I am sorry I called your husband a moron.
To your wonderful and intelligent children, Darren and Natosha, I am sorry I called your father a moron.
Your dad is not a Moron for leaving Coco in the game. Only a long list of other things.
You see kids—a man appears moronic when he signs Corey Patterson to a 3-year deal, replaces him in the leadoff position with another speedster who can't get on base, and is constantly seen sucking a toothpick.
So I hope you can at least understand my knee-jerk reaction.
Well fans, players, coaches, scouts, and all of the others that live and die for my articles, I am off to enjoy another plate of crow and eagerly await tonight's game in Kansas City.