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by Brian Dill 02.03.2012
Posted In: Basketball at 02:04 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Queen City Hoops

UC and X still have work to do

Two weeks ago it was UC that was on top of their game; not so anymore. The Bearcats have lost three straight and struggled mightily in Piscataway last Saturday. The Bearcats had a less than impressive shooting night at a 35 percent clip. The only exceptions were Dion Dixon and Yancy Gates, who went a combined 13-21.

Perhaps the biggest reason for the loss was not an inability to make shots but a lack of second half defense. UC held Eli Carter — Rutgers' best player — in check in the first half, allowing only 2 points. In the second 20 minutes of play Carter exploded for 15 points and buried the Bearcats.

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by Isaac Thorn 01.06.2009
Posted In: baseball at 01:04 PM | Permalink | Comments (4)

Burrell Gone, Baldelli Still Possible

Now that the Rays have signed Pat Burrell maybe my pipe dream of Rocco Baldelli launching home runs off the Batter's Eye Pavilion in center field becomes a bit less improbable.

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by Danny Cross 10.13.2008
Posted In: cycling at 09:48 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Cyclists Unite!

In case you haven’t heard, big changes are coming to I-75 in the next decade. We need more room on the freeways for all of our cars, and with widening comes other infrastructure changes. One that will certainly affect bicycle commuters is the I-75/Hopple Street interchange, which needs to be updated so future generations of highway travelers can stop off at White Castle safely and effectiently. But local bike advocacy organization Queen City Bike (www.queencitybike.com) is hoping that city leaders will make sure that cyclists can cross the highway or use Central Parkway safely as well. A public hearing is scheduled for Oct. 22 at City Hall for the Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee to receive testimony regarding bike and pedestrian access. The peeps over at QCB are currently organizing cyclists to attend the meeting and speak on behalf of two-wheelers who don’t like the looks of the European-style round-about proposal that’s currently being considered. CityBeat will be at the meeting to see whether city leaders react to cyclists’ fears with genuine concern or fake charm. Roxanne Qualls is the subcommittee chairperson, and Chris Bortz, Laketa Cole and John Cranley are members. Go to queencitybike.com and RSVP if you know you want to attend the hearing and possibly testify. The bike people are looking to demonstrate a sizable bike crowd and welcome all support. Transportation & Infrastructure Subcommittee public hearing 6 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 22 Cincinnati City Council Chambers, Room 300 City Hall, 801 Plum St.
by Brian Dill 01.27.2012
Posted In: Basketball at 12:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tough Week for Queen City Hoops

It was a disappointing week for both UC and Xavier as the past seven days have seen the teams go a combined 0-4. While both teams faced tough opposition I would have expected both to at least earn one win out of the two games they played.

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by Danny Cross 10.21.2008
Posted In: cycling at 11:00 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Y'all Ride?

Just another reminder about tomorrow night's Transportation & Infrastructure Subcommittee public hearing regarding bike and pedestrian access across the soon-to-be-way-different I-75 corridor.

Cincinnati is generally regarded as a crappy place to ride bikes (see my recent CityBeat cover story "No One Rides for Free"), save for our lovely park trails and a couple of East Side commuter routes. An impressive downtown bike facility is planned for The Banks, but consideration for bike commuters along the I-75 corridor will be important for people to even get to it on two-wheelers.

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by Isaac Thorn 04.20.2009
Posted In: Fantasy at 12:25 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)

New Fantasy Owners and the Pirates Who Love Them

There's nothing like another fantasy loss acting like a set of hard knuckles across your face. Really wakes you up and shakes up your roster.

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by Armond Prude 05.07.2010
at 03:06 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Bengals Give Pacman Another Chance

The Cincinnai Bengals are back at it again with their recent signing of troubled cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones. Jones agreed to a two-year deal with the club on Thursday, making the Bengals his third team in his short and troubled NFL career.

Thankfully, the Bengals made sure to include language in the contract to protect themselves in case Jones decides to get into any off the field trouble. Tom Hunter, Jones' agent, told The Associated Press on Thursday night that the deal would be signed on either Friday or Monday.

Jones, who did not play during the 2009 season, was suspended for six games in 2008 while playing for the Dallas Cowboys and was suspended the entire 2007 season, both due to his off the field issues that violated the league’s player conduct policy.

The Bengals may have added Jones in hopes that he will add depth to the cornerback position while possibly showing flashes of his Tennessee Titans days. Jones is a gifted athlete and is only 26, although it has yet to be seen if he can keep a level head off the field and clean up his act.  

The Bengals feature one of the better cornerback duos in the league in Leon Hall and Johnathan Joseph. Coming off the bench are two young and gifted prospects in Morgan Trent and this year’s third round pick from Wake Forest, Brandon Ghee. Jones will be hard pressed to make the team, especially if there are any doubts that he will be a distraction come training camp.

This signing comes to no surprise due to the Bengals’ recent history of troubled stars and giving players multiple chances. At the same time, I highly doubt that anyone expected Adam Jones to end up on this squad. I question why the front office would go out and bring in another distraction of this magnitude. With the recent success and big outlook on this upcoming season, the Bengals don’t need to take any risks. Then again, if bringing in Matt Jones after a cocaine possession charge wasn’t enough excitement for Bengals fans, this just might be the icing on the cake. Let’s just hope that Marvin Lewis can control this bunch for one more year.

by Maija Zummo 04.03.2015
Posted In: baseball at 11:48 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

New Food, Drink and Retail Options at Great American Ballpark

Just in time for Opening Day … and the All-Star Game

Reds season kicks off Monday at Great American Ball Park, which means Cincinnatians will be spending a varying amount of time in the stadium, depending on their fan level. Whether you go once a season or to every Reds game, GABP has added a few new features for everyone in 2015, and just in time for the 86th MLB All-Star Game in July.

“Many of the new ballpark features include historic elements and streetscape façades that pay homage to the Queen City’s cultural heritage,” said Phil Castellini, Reds COO, in a recent press release. “Reds baseball is an intrinsic part of our past, and we are excited to have the ballpark reflect the vibrancy happening throughout our downtown. These ballpark features are a great opportunity to showcase Cincinnati’s history to the thousands of guests visiting the region during All-Star Summer.” 

Bootleggers Bar 
Bootleggers is a beer and booze addition to existing offerings like the "Reds Brewery District" — the 60-tap, 85-foot craft beer bar between sections 117 and 118. Bootleggers, located on the Terrace Level by first base, features a historically inspired design, reminiscent of Over-the-Rhine's 1900s Wielert's Biergarten. The walk-in bar will serve beer and liquor. 

Concessions Updates
Several updates have been made to GABP concession stands. The Frisch’s, LaRosa’s, UDF Ice Cream, Penn Station, Skyline Chili, Moerlein Lager House and Taste of Belgium Terrace-level stands have all received new streetscape façades. Some of the hot dog/brat/mett stands have been rebranded as "Porkopolis," to pay tribute to our porky heritage. And the Fry Box, which is located in a repurposed shipping container, will feature fresh-cut fries with a variety of toppings. 

DraftServ Beer Stations
These self-serve beer stations (20 of them) will be installed around the ballpark and will feature Budweiser, Bud Light and Goose Island on draft. Purchase a "beer card" at retail team shops and pay for beer — which you can pour yourself — by the ounce.  

Food Ordering Kiosks
Avoid waiting in line and place an order for food at one of four touch-screen kiosks on the Terrace Level by third base. Food can be picked up at designated concession stands. 

The Handlebar at the Riverfront Club
New GABP restaurant The Handlebar features an all-inclusive buffet and open bar, 26-foot video wall, high-definition video columns and both indoor and outdoor seating. Located on the Club Level overlooking right field, fans can purchase standing room "Handlebar Access" tickets online, daily access passes for season ticket holders at a discounted rate, outdoor rail seats ($120) or luxury boxes that seat groups of 12 to 14 guests ($100 initial group deposit). For more information, visit reds.com/handlebar.

Nursing Suite
For moms, there's a new nursing suite from Pampers and Fischer Homes. It's a private area open to all breast-feeding/bottle-feeding moms, and moms with other childcare needs. It features gliders, changing stations, a private restroom, a kitchenette with a sink, ice and a fridge, lockers for storing items like diaper bags and several flat-screen TVs broadcasting the game. It's located on the Suite Level near the Champions Club elevators.

Retail Row 
This new streetscape façade inside the main gates features the Majestic Home Plate Shop, Split the Pot Booth, Season Ticket Holder Central, Game-Used Authentics and Fan Club Corner. 

by Danny Cross 02.20.2012
Posted In: baseball at 12:51 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Spring (Baseball) Is In the Air

Pitchers and catchers reported to the Reds’ spring training facility in Goodyear, Ariz., over the weekend, which means we are only days away from hearing about how awesome the team’s dudes are looking or how quickly they get hurt and have to sit out, leaving us to wonder if they’ll be ready by Opening Day. (March baseball involves a lot of speculation.)

The Reds will open camp with one of the most talented rosters they’ve had in the last 15 years, as General Manager Walt Jocketty added considerable muscle to the pitching staff during the offseason. New Reds to keep an eye on include:

• Starting pitcher Mat Latos, who is expected to be the team’s No. 2 behind Johnny Cueto;

• Sean Marshall, one of baseball’s best left-handed relievers last season;

• Closer Ryan Madson, who the Reds picked up late in the offseason in a team-friendly one-year deal.

The first two mentioned, Latos and Marshall, were acquired via trade of prospects, which demonstrates a dedication by Reds’ management to make a run at another division title (and perhaps more) during the final two years of former MVP Joey Votto’s contract. (See CityBeat sports columnist C. Trent Rosecrans’ Jan. 24 take in “Reds Try to Win Now Without Breaking the Bank.”)

Soon the offseason speculation will give way to preseason hype, as young, no-name guys start hitting .400 during practice games and veterans post high ERAs because they’re practicing specific pitches instead of trying to get everyone out. There will be tons of reports from Goodyear, such as “Bob Castellini Talks Reds, Baseball" and “Roster Projection.”

Before we know it, we will have casually followed weeks of the Reds playing America’s summer game in sunny Arizona, which will distract us from the fact that we still have at least another month of crappy weather before we can enjoy the unofficial start of springtime and Reds’ Opening Day on April 5.

Until then, enjoy the pretend summertime in the highlights and mass influx of information from the team’s month-long practice session. And if you need even more sports speculation, trade rumors and contract talk, here’s a sweet site dedicated to re-reporting everything it can find on your favorite team: mlbtraderumors.com.

by Brian Dill 03.16.2012
Posted In: College, Basketball at 09:39 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Queen City Hoops: March Madness Edition

UC, Xavier play second-round NCAA Tournament games today

It’s a big day for fans here in the Queen City, for those repping the navy and white and the red and black. After the five months of build-up March Madness has finally arrived and after success for other semi-local teams — Ohio State, Kentucky and Louisville — the Bearcats and the Muskies look to continue the trend.

Sixth-seeded Cincinnati will face the eleventh-seeded Texas Longhorns in the second round of the East region. The game is slated to tip at 12:15 p.m. today on CBS.

The Bearcats will need to contain the Longhorn’s one-man show in J’Covan Brown. The junior guard averaged a Big 12 best 20.1 points per game on a team that averaged 73 a game. Production drops off seriously after Brown — Texas only has one other player averaging double figure points. If the Bearcats decide to play man-to-man, a combo of Dion Dixon and JaQuan Parker will look to slow down Brown. Cashmere Wright will have the duty of slowing down freshman point guard Myck Kabongo, a former McDonald’s All-American.

Offensively the ‘Cats will look to use their superior size — Texas has only one player taller than 6-foot-7 — down low with Yancy Gates, Cheikh Mbodj and Justin Jackson. If UC can get the ball down low on a consistent basis then the duo of Wright and Dixon will be able to penetrate and create open outside shots for Parker and leading scorer Sean Kilpatrick. Unlike Texas, UC has a well-balanced offense with four players averaging double digits and a fifth player averaging 9 points per game.

Texas is a young team with six freshmen on the roster and has lost more than one close game during a tough Big 12 schedule despite their lack of experience. The Bearcats also have fought their way through their fair share of adversity this year. If Mick Cronin’s guys play with the defensive tenacity that saw them knock off a nation-leading seven ranked teams during the season, than surely we will see them in round three.

Catch plenty of action and throw back a green beer (or 12) before the 10th-seeded Musketeers face off against seventh-seeded Notre Dame in a battle of Catholic supremacy ... on the hardwood (in terms of religion, they’re all winners).

On paper this looks like a great game and hopefully it plays out that way on the court. As most college hoops fans know, the Muskies are led by the outstanding backcourt duo of Tu Holloway and Mark Lyons. They average 17 points and 15.5 points, respectively.

Notre Dame doesn’t have a go-to scorer after losing their stud, Tim Abromaitis, early in the year. But what the Fighting Irish don’t lack is a core group of players that work their tails off and come up with wins. A big match up in this game will be between big-men Jack Cooley and Kenny Frease. If either one can have a monster game expect that team to win.

I think Xavier will have their hands full but I also think the Musketeers play some of their best ball during tournament time. I think Xavier pulls it out by five or so. Although the Reds look like their going to be damned good this year I’m not ready for the hoops season to end early. Best of luck to both teams!