The latest batch of responses seem to crack down on not what we say, but how it gets said.  And in the case of the Reds and the Bengals…is there any other way to actually say it?

“To Press Pros…While I enjoy your weekly commentary and predictions on area football games, I’m not a fan of some of your references that are blunt and sound disrespectful.  A couple of weeks ago you wrote “that West Carrollton has yet to win a game and likely won’t win before the end of the season.”  I think you could have written something a little more tasteful and encouraging.  I appreciate the truth, but I would add that the truth can come in many different tones.”  …  Daniel Weber

(Ed. Note:  We really don’t know how to handle your objection except to say the pressure is off both of us now.  West Carrollton actually beat Piqua on Friday night.  But we’re not the first (or only) to have written that one team or another is not likely to win a game, and we have at least 150 years of journalistic history on our side.  The issue here is the message, not the messenger.)

“As a Buckeye fan I thoroughly enjoyed your September article on baseball player Conner Pohl.  I thought it was a wonderful insight on an athlete at the crossroads of his career and I really appreciated his comments about his teammates and the privilege of representing Ohio State University.  The title “Autumn Of The Process” was a great choice of metaphor.”  … Jack Montgomery (via Facebook)

Our recent stories on bad product from both the Reds and the Bengals delivered these reader gems:

“I’m writing to comment on the articles from September 16 (by Greg Hoard) and September 25 (by Sonny Fulks) and the negative references made about the Reds and Bengals.  I think they were inaccurate, intentionally critical, and unfair.  As a Reds fan I’ve always supported them knowing that they can’t always win the World Series.  And while you both mention that the local fans are different from those in larger markets, you disregard that loyalty is a big part of what makes us different.  You also failed to understand our appreciation for just having a major league baseball (or football) team.  It’s just my opinion, but I believe you’re totally wrong in saying that the Reds and Bengals are on the brink of being irrelevant.”  … Robt. Zawicky

(Ed. Note:  With apologies to edits (for space) in your excellent letter, I do think it ‘fair’, as you mentioned, to note this about the Reds, in particular.  While your loyalty is admirable, I wonder if it’s not blind when other ‘small market’ teams like Tampa Bay, Milwaukee, and Oakland, consistently outperform the Reds while spending far less on player contracts.  And for the sake of consistency, St. Louis, a market nearly the size of Cincinnati, has competed for championships on a regular basis while the Reds’ last appearance in the World Series is now 29 years ago.  To your point, these facts are absolutely accurate, intentionally critical, and totally ‘fair’.)

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“I’m a first time writer to Press Pros and wanted to comment that your stories on the Reds were dead on.  There must be a reason why a team like Tampa Bay can finish 30 games over .500 while the Reds finish 30 games under, and spend half what the Reds do.  I enjoy your site.”  … Donald Ensminger

“You wrote that the Reds don’t have bad players, they just play bad baseball, and that’s true.  They’ve always had good players and a lot of them they gave away before their prime, like Paul O’Neil and Edwin Encarnacion.”  … Tom Gano

(Ed. Note:  That trend goes way back to the days of trading Frank Robinson for Milt Pappas.  And upon checking with Hal (McCoy), he reminds that they gave up on Didi Gregorius and Yasmani Grandal, too – and many more.)

“I enjoyed the articles on Marty Brennaman, and add that it’s a shame he had so little positive to talk about for the past twenty five years.  As you wrote, he might have deserved better.”  …  David Waller

“To your articles about Marty Brennaman, I will say that the reason I’ve stayed a fan through all the bad years is because of Marty and Joe.  They brought a lot of interest and entertainment to bad baseball  that I don’t expect to hear that from Marty’s replacement, whoever they hire.”  … Mike Morrison (via Facebook)

Our September 23 column about the price of what it costs to see a Buckeyes football game brought this response:

“I’m so glad you wrote this because I never thought I’d see the day when a ticket to watch Ohio State play football would cost $200.  Crazy!”  … Dennis Lammers

“I quit going to Ohio State games when they redid the stadium and asked for donations of $10,000 to maintain the rights to the seats I had in B deck for twenty five years.  I think at that time they were $45 dollars.”  … Bill (Westerville, Oh)

“If it’s supply and demand the demand is obviously driving the price.  But it’s highway robbery to charge $75 dollars to see them beat the hell out of Miami just to share state-funded football money with Miami.  If I wanted to fund Miami I’d send them a check personally.  I’ll pay to watch good football, not football welfare.”  … Bob Kerber

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