That's Soooo Cincinnati

Boys of Summer

May 19, 2004 at 2:06 pm
Ryan Greis

It's only mid-May, so interest and optimism for the hometown Cincinnati Reds remains high. In fact, as of press time, the team was just a few games out of first place in the National League Central.

Love for this franchise began early on in the team's existence, which most people already know began in 1869 as the first professional baseball club. The Cincinnati Redlegs would go on to post a laundry list of other baseball firsts, too, adding to the team's unique allure. The Redlegs were the only team to go undefeated in the regular season in 1869. Old Crosley Field hosted the first night game in Major League history in 1935. And the Reds played in the first televised game in 1939.

Success has generally followed the Reds. That's important to remember these past few "rebuilding" years. Consider that the Reds have won pennants and a few World Championships since notable "lovable loser" clubs like the Chicago Cubs and the Boston Red Sox have even appeared in the World Series.

The history of the Reds should be even more accessible in a few months when the team Hall of Fame and Museum opens next to Great American Ball Park. Fans remain excited to see the last piece of the ballpark puzzle after so many years of suffering through chopped-up stadiums and orange barrel hell just to get to the old ball game.

As the team comes home this week from a road trip on the West Coast, Reds officials will tell you that, for all the anticipation for the new digs, attendance in Cincinnati has been and likely will continue to be tied directly to the team's performance on the field. If they start winning again while they're here, watch the turnstiles turn.

Root, root, rooting for the home team ... only if they're good. That's soooo Cincinnati.

THAT'S SOOOO CINCINNATI highlights the area's quirky assets, hidden gems, unique personalities and criminal secrets — and reprises one of the most popular features in CityBeat's 10-year history.