You’ll probably remember earlier this week when Coach Cal packed up the national championship trophy and traveled to Cincinnati to be honored and throw out the first pitch before the Reds game against the Giants. You also might remember that fans in Cincinnati were upset about this visit and vented some of their frustrations by booing Coach Cal during the festivities. Well, Reds announcer Marty Brennaman has something to say to those fans, and he told Jerry Tipton all about it. Here’s some of what he said:
When the Reds introduced Calipari, boos could be heard. This prompted Marty Brennaman, the Reds’ Hall of Fame play-by-play man, to scold those who booed.
“We’re a regional franchise,” Brennaman said later in a telephone conversation later in the week, “and Kentucky is a very important part of that region. I said, ‘You people ought to be ashamed of yourselves.’ ”
As Brennaman recalled, the Reds have recognized teams in the region at least as far back as 1999, when John Cooper and Jim O’Brien, Ohio State’s football and basketball coaches, respectively, took bows.
Of course, the Reds invited Calipari to throw out the first pitch because Kentucky won this year’s NCAA Tournament.
For whatever reason, the invitation was unpopular with some people.
“That’s just stupid,” Brennaman said. “For people to get upset over it, it’s the most ludicrous thing that I’ve ever heard of.”
However, the 69-year-old Brennaman didn’t limit his criticism to fans of the Reds. He talked about Kentucky fans, as well, but focused on their lackluster attendance at the special event instead:
Seldom shy about speaking his mind, Brennaman also criticized Kentucky fans, presumably those living in Northern Kentucky, in particular, for not attending the Reds-Giants game Tuesday in greater numbers.
“All I hear about is Big Blue Nation, and Big Blue this and Big Blue that,” he said in recalling his on-air comments. “I said, I’m frankly surprised and disappointed at the number of Kentucky fans who showed up at the ballpark tonight knowing (Calipari) and his staff and the trophy were all going to be here.
“I guess you’re Big Blue fans as long as you don’t have to go into your pocket and buy a ticket.”
I have to say it’s a little ridiculous to criticize a fanbase that’s legendary for going anywhere and everywhere to watch their team, and that just spent the month of March traveling all over the country to follow the Cats, for choosing not to show up to a baseball game. Still, everyone has a right to their opinion no matter how off base it is, although Marty should probably stick to his particular areas of expertise, like talking about how awful Reds fans are, in the future.