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I am a freelance writer. I've covered the Cincinnati Reds, Bengals and others since 1992. I have a background in sales as well. I've sold consumer electronics, advertising and consumer package goods for companies ranging from the now defunct Circuit City to Procter&Gamble. I have worked as a stats operator for Xavier University, the University of Cincinnati, the College of Mount St. Joe and Colerain High School.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Dodgers' Manager Don Mattiingly - A Big Red Machine Fan

Don Mattingly was emphatic when asked if he was a Cincinnati Reds' fan growing up in nearby Evansville, Indiana.

"Are you kidding me?" Mattingly replied when he was asked about being a Reds' fan on the eve of a ceremony to dedicate a statue of Joe Morgan. All eight position players, Morgan's Big Red Machine teammates, will attend the ceremony while the Dodgers are in town this weekend, including Pete Rose.  Rose is banned from baseball for gambling.

The irony is the Dodgers and Reds were bitter rivals in the early to mid-seventies..

Mattingly was a Reds fan.  The Reds' manager is a former Dodger player from the BRM era.

"I was a big Reds' guy," Mattingly said. "They were my wiffle ball team. We had to bat with the same hand the real guys did. I've been Johnny Bench, Junior Kennedy.  Dan Driessen played third. I knew all those guys. I could be all lefties except Geronimo.  I had to play Concepcion."

He emulated them on the wiffle ball field and watched them on television.

"I watched all those guys," Mattingly said. "Don Gullett, big Jack Billingsley, I mean Jack Billingham, I watched them a lot. The Dodger skipper had his own pitcher Chad Billingsley from Defiance, Ohio confused with Jack Billingham of the Big Red Machine, temporarily.

Mattingly is in favor of Rose's participation.

"It's cool," Mattingly said.  "It is fine with me."

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