Cincinnati Reds broadcasters have long had an interesting relationship with the Chicago Cubs. If you watch a Cubs/Reds game with Reds guys calling it – whether it’s Marty or Thom Brennaman or George Grande – you detect two things: (1) the Reds guys work very hard to be fair and even-handed, but (2) they don’t much like the Cubs.

And Marty already doesn’t like the Cubs for the 2011 season.

“The Cubs have a chance to be improved. I don’t think they’re good enough to win the division,” Brennaman told the Chicago Tribune Wednesday from Arizona. “I think their defense is very suspect. They have a kid (Carlos Pena) at first base who is an all-or-nothing guy. He either hits the ball out of the ballpark or he makes an out. So to say that the Cubs are a ‘contender’ … that’s a stretch.

“They could fool everybody and have two or three guys have career years, and here you are come September and they are in the thick of it. But I don’t think on paper that they are a team that can play or can be reckoned with in the same way as the Reds and the Brewers.”

As unsavory as the conclusion is, Brennaman’s characterization of the Cubs as a team that would need a couple career years to surprise and take the Central is accurate. The defense is, indeed, very suspect. The Carlos Pena rationale is a bit bizarre, but I suspect comes from a place of being frustrated with Adam Dunn for so many years (incorrectly frustrated, I might add).

Still, it’s not as though the Reds are not without questions. Perhaps Brennaman should peruse the various reasons the 2011 Cincinnati Reds will suck

  • BT

    Brennaman may or may not be right, but he despises the Cubs and should be ignored at all costs.

    • http://SOI veryzer

      This. Plus nobody with a white afro should be taken seriously.

      • Bric

        I agree. The Cubs should schedule their annual ’70s night for a game against the Reds every year just to honor him. This dude can do the hustle with cigarette in hand better than Travolta.

  • jstraw

    Some time last season I became aware that “Reds Nation” views us as the despised rival. I thought it was silly and amusing but I really couldn’t make sense of it, primarily because we do not and probably will not ever identify them as that. Maybe they were just feeling left out and needed a hated rival…I dunno. Maybe they’re just feeling very defensive about Dusty. It’s just kinda weird.

    • wax_eagle

      Much easier to hate on the somewhat lowly, and slighly closer geographically Cubs than on the often much better Cardinals, or ignorable Brewers…Plus the Cubs are the big market team in the division, none of the other teams can match them in spending power or revenue…

    • Jeff

      It always strikes me as hilarious when a person or team designates someone as their “rival” when the other party has an “I don’t care” attitude about it. The Cubs have the Sox and Cards and everything else is usually just another game. Unfortunately for Cincinatti, they probably fall short of Milwaukee and Pittsburgh as Cubs rivals. I even hold more hate towards the Yankees than I do the Reds.

      • jstraw

        Exactly. It’s like that blond yelling at the gecko and mistaking him for “Stanley” from back in ’03. And you arrrrrrre?

  • Philoe Beddoe

    “that can play or be reckoned with the Reds and Brewers”….I know they got Greinke but the Brewers haven’t won anything since 1982, and wasn’t the Reds division title their first since 1990? way back Goodfellas came out..a movie I am pretty sure the guy in the picture was whacked in

    • Bric

      Yea, he got the papers, got the papers…. and then ended up hanging in a meat locker. Great movie for the quotes alone. “Paulie hated phones…”