Dusty Baker goes home from the Reds' games each night and watches baseball before he goes to sleep. He watches the scoreboard from opening day on to see who is playing well.
"I keep watching the teams ahead of us or closest to us,' Baker said. "Like Satchel Paige said, 'don't look behind you. Someone might be gaining on you.' So why do you want to look backward. It's like a wide receiver. You can tell the ones who can't run because they are angling toward the end zone and looking back to see if someone is catching him. The guys that can run, just runs."
"I try to pick up something. I try to see how they pitch a certain guy. That's my job. I like what I do. Contrary to popular belief, I am very aware and try to know what' going on at all times. It may not always work like last night. Sometimes it ain't going to work. But the odds are what I study. I watch baseball. I love watching baseball. You see the manager's tendencies or you see a catcher drop to his knees when he throws the ball back to the pitcher. If you really watch in depth there is a whole bunch to see."
Baker didn't stay up late enough to see the Pirates lose to Colorado. The media contingent told him.
"For those that were coming down on this team, we're in pretty good shape," Baker said. "So now it's up to us. We could be the Giants. We could be Washington. It is up to us to win. It's as simple as that."
Washington and San Francisco were division winners last season along with the Reds. San Francisco is 52-64. They are last in the NL West. Washington is 56-60 and 14-1/2 games behind Atlanta in the NL East. The Nationals are also eight games behind the Reds for the second wild card spot.