On Feb. 1, Marty Brennaman spoke at McNicholas High School at the father-son breakfast. He spent much of his time speaking talking about the Reds and the upcoming season.
On the upcoming 2015 season
“One of my favorite quotes about baseball has always been ‘there ain’t no experts in this game,’” Brennaman said. “Every analyst I’ve seen on MLB Network has picked us to finish last this year, and I don’t think that’s going to happen.”
He explained some of the keys to the Reds’ success.
“[Devin] Mesoraco, [Todd] Frazier, and [Billy] Hamilton are the three core players to this team’s future,” Brennaman said. “But if this team is going to succeed it will come down to how Joey Votto and Jay Bruce rebound from their terrible seasons they had a year ago.”
He emphasized the importance of the pitching staff.
“We traded away Latos, and that’s something I’m worried about for this season,” Brennaman said. “[Tony] Cingrani and [Anthony] DeSclafani will be in the rotation this year. It’s time for Cingrani to prove if he’s good enough to start or not.”
On the upcoming free agency of Johnny Cueto
After this season, Johnny Cueto, one of the key players on the team, will be eligible for free agency, meaning his contract will be up. Brennaman was not optimistic that the Reds will be the team to give it to him.
“With the recent big money deals going to [Max] Scherzer and [Jon] Lester, I think the Reds were just blown out of the water,” Brennaman said. “They cannot and should not try to give him $200+ million. We just can’t afford to do that.” Max Scherzer of the Washington Nationals and Jon Lester of the Chicago Cubs are two starting pitchers who signed mega contracts this offseason of $210 million and $155 million, respectively. Cueto has been arguably a more successful pitcher than either of them in recent years.
On Joey Votto
Brennaman opened with “Joey is…a different breed of cat.” He continued to say “There is no one in the history of the Reds that I’ve disagreed with more on what’s important to hitting. He disagrees with me and can understand where I’m coming from, and I disagree and cannot understand where he comes from.”
Brennaman was talking about the emphasis that Votto puts on getting on base and drawing walks, instead of hitting for power and driving in runs. “A 3-hole hitter needs to drive in runs, not draw walks,” he said.
Speeding up Baseball
In the past few months, Major League Baseball has released its plans to accelerate the pace of baseball. Limiting the time pitchers can take between pitches and batters can spend outside the batter’s box are a few of the areas being addressed. Many traditionalists in baseball oppose the idea, but Brennaman is not among them.
“I’m a fan of speeding up the game,” Brennaman said. “If the fans didn’t care, then baseball wouldn’t be addressing this. The game is played for the fans.” He added that the game won’t ever really be shortened until the commercial time is cut.
“The best way to shorten games is to cut commercial time, and baseball will never give up that money.”
The Reds are currently playing games almost daily at their Spring Training facility in Goodyear, Arizona, and will open their season at home on Monday, April 6 against the Pittsburgh Pirates. To follow their Spring Training results as well as your favorite players and to get acquainted with those new to the roster, visit www.reds.com.