Thursday, March 29, 2007

Not a great final tune up for Bronson Arroyo tonight. He went five, but gave up three runs. That's still better than the numbers Aaron Harang has been posting this spring and a light year past where Eric Milton is at this time. So I wouldn't be too concerned

Arroyo starts the second game of the season, next Wednesday against the Cubs.

That mid season trade Wayne Krivsky engineered in 2006 isn't looking so hot tonight. Felipe Lopez and Austin Kearns will be in the Nationals "everyday 8" line-up. Thursday, the Reds put pitcher Bill Bray on the DL and sent Gary Majewski to the minors. But both could be with the 'big club' within a month.

It's almost amazing, but Chris Denorfia has gone from fighting for a spot on the Reds roster to out for the season. Denorfia found out Thursday, his sore forearm is really a blown ligament in his elbow. He'll need Tommy John surgery.

Temperatures predicted in the mid-70's for Opening Day in Cincinnati. Which means it'll probably snow.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Now five days and counting until opening day. Both Aaron Harang and Bronson Arroyo have one more shot to get it right in spring training. Harang will toss on Wednesday, Arroyo will throw on Thursday.

Spring numbers mean nothing. That’s why you can’t get too worked up over Harang struggling this spring and Arroyo lighting it up.

Hitting is the same deal too. Adam Dunn is at .383, but has struck out every four at bats this spring. Josh Hamilton, the modern day Roy Hobbs is hitting .403, Brandon Philips is picking up where he left off last season, hitting .350.

The biggest concern is Ken Griffey, Junior, who didn’t get into a game this spring until last Sunday. Junior has three hits in his first ten at bat, including a sweet bunt down the third base line Tuesday night against that shift a lot of teams like to throw at him. I’d love to see that a lot more in 2007.

And, with just days to go before the start of the baseball season…my picks?
American League, Yanks in the East, Tigers in the Central and Oakland in the West. National League? Philies, Cards and Dodgers. Wild Cards, Mets in the NL, White Sox in the AL.

Now, check out my web site: The latest Broo v. Broo is up and running and the boy and I have some hard core opinions on a lot of what's going on in sports. Also up there, the latest "Broo View Podcast". I've got an indepth interview with Reds outfielder Adam Dunn. Later this week, I'll have an indepth interview with Ken Griffey, Junior. Check them out, in the "Podcasts and More" section at

Monday, March 19, 2007

It's official. When Ken Griffey, Jr, is healthy enough to play again, it will be in right field, not center. That's what Reds manager, Jerry Narron, said today, after the Reds lost to the Tigers in an exhibition game. Junior has been out of commission since breaking his wrist in December, while playing with his kids. He's taken batting practice, outfield practice, he's run, and he's thrown the ball. But Junior hasn't played in a game yet. He could play as early as Thursday, when the Yankees play the Reds in Sarasota.

Here's what I'm told. Junior knew about this move to right field as early as February, when he first reported to camp. He was also told, by Narron, that he would play some centerfield. But Narron backed off that as camp began. I'm also told, one of Junior's big concerns about the move has been the lack of a bona fide centerfielder to replace him. Ryan Freel will get the start in center. But Freel is a utility player with a penchant for getting hurt, and hurting other people.

Junior has been consistent about this: he has never raised the issue and has told Reds management he will play wherever they want him to.

Check out my web site, The latest edition of Broo v. Broo will be posted sometime over night. It's a really, really good one this week.


Sunday, March 18, 2007

Rare is the team that can win a championship without struggling along the way. And such is the case in this NCAA Tournament with the Ohio State Buckyes. They entered the tourney the number one team in the USA and one of four number one seeds. Saturday, it almost came to a crashing halt.

Here they were, down nine to ninth seed Xavier, an upstart school from Cincinnati. Three minutes remained….when the Buckeyes got a wake up call. First, a three point shot by Jamar Butler…and then, Mike Conley Junior stole Xavier’s inbound pass.

Xavier would lead by three with nine seconds to play. But senior Justin Cage, playing the game of his life with 25-points on eight of eight shooting from the field…missed the back end of a 1-and-1. OSU got the rebound….actually, Conley did…and without calling time out streaked to forecourt where he found Ron Lewis. Lewis was playing the game of his life, 24 points…but three more were to come….with only two seconds to play.

That tied the game. But for all intents and purposes, Xavier was sunk. Zapped. Lewis could see it in their eyes.

In overtime, Xavier took a quick two point lead….but then Conley ripped off seven straight points. And Ohio State survived and moved on. Their coach, Thad Matta, left Xavier in a lurch three summers ago to take the Ohio State job. He knew, at the end of regulation, his team could be drained from having to play catch up the entire second half…or…Xavier could be stunned from being caught. I asked Matta how he kept his team from falling down the drain.
For his answers, head onto over to my web site and click on the "Podcasts & More" section. Check out my latest "Broo View Podcast" for comments from Matta and OSU stars Mike Conley, Jr. and Ron Lewis.

Other observations from opening weekend of the NCAA Tournament? Stanford, Illinois and Arkansas proved their critics were right. Fast exits in lopsided losses showed none of the three belonged in this tournament.

Butler’s win over Maryland in the round of 32 has a lot of people thinking the Bulldogs are back to where they were in December.

And the easiest upset from the opening round to pick turned out to be Winthrop over Notre Dame. Just about every expert had that one.

My two champions from my two brackets remain Kansas and Memphis. We’ll see.

Monday, March 12, 2007

I've got Kansas winning it all. Which will undoubtably be the kiss of death for the Jayhawks. But as we begin the first week of "March Madness", they seem to have the easiest path to the title. We'll see.

I don't see a mid major having the kind of run this season that George Mason had last year. I just think the 1's and 2's are very strong. But you know there will be an opening round upset. My pick for that: Winthrop over Notre Dame.

I got a lot done in my recent trip to the Reds spring training complex in Sarasota, Florida. I saw three complete games and parts of two others. Three things struck me (and no, none were foul balls)

The Reds starting pitching seems to be a lot better this spring than last. Bronson Arroyo and Aaron Harang are a solid 1-2, or 2-1. Eric Milton is always a dicey deal. But he did keep the ball 'down' in the outing I saw last week. Kyle Loshe didn't pitch. He was nursing a sore hamstring. But Paul Wilson did. And he looked terrific. I know it's only one outing in the spring. But if Wilson is back from his shoulder surgery, the Reds may have a real bargain.

I loved what I saw, and heard, from Josh Hamilton. I did an extensive interview with Josh that will appear on WLWT in Cincinnati and an audio portion of it on Check back later in the week for both. Hamilton has hit the ball well this spring. True, he's not seeing the entire repetoire that pitchers have. But he has one of the sweetest swings in camp. His defense is solid. His past is his past. But if that's history now, the Reds may have come up with the steal of the century.

Finally, Homer Bailey isn't ready for the majors. He's close. But when I saw him last week, he was not making the 'in game adjustments' good pitchers have to make in the majors. His fastball is mid-90's. But, it was flat and worse, high. With the need for a fifth starter only marginal early in the season...two or three times between opening day and June 1, my guess is Bailey will start in AAA. Good for him. He needs the time.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Hello from sunny and warm Sarasota, Florida. I'm spending the week at the Reds spring training facility. Check in at mid day Wednesday. I'll have my latest "Broo View" podcast up and running with some thoughts from Reds' ace, Aaron Harang.

I've caught part of one game and most of another since arriving on Monday. The Reds beat the Phillies Monday, 9-8 on a suicide squeeze expertly executed by relief pitcher Brian Meadows.

Tuesday some of the Reds regulars and a couple of their big league pitchers took a short bus trip up to St Petersburg and beat the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Adam Dunn and Scott Hatteberg each went two for three. And after a not so hot spring start, pitcher Eric Milton rebounded with a decent three inning one run effort.

They play the Yankees Wednesday night in Tampa. I'll have more before that game, on