Reviewing the Blogs


Like many discerning sports fans, I get all of my news from the internet. With the wide variety of outlets, you are sure to get the best information available.

OK, so that may not be entirely true, but it’s still important to cruise around the blogosphere (or tumblverse, depending on where your loyalties lie) to catch up on the conversation with the man on the street. This new semi-regular segment hopes to capture those fan’s perspective and keep you informed on goings-on around the Central, without you having to actually surf through all of this news yourself.

We start with our Fansided friends from around the Central Division.

Chicago Cubs

Leading off our line-up of NL Central news are the boys from Cubbies Crib, a group of diehard Northsiders (are there any other kind?) who have a job this year I do not envy – they have to report on the slow, arduous process of rebuilding Chicago into a champion (project began in 1909, end date TBD).

On the mind of the staff writers right now is the struggle with a consistent backstop in light of Geovany Soto’s horrendous start and the young guns itching to take his job. There’s also a good piece about the fact that Kerry Wood is, in fact, still a Major League pitcher. He also has a job to win in the bullpen when he gets back from his 3,405,876,745th injury. They also do a great job wrapping up each and every game there, so you can watch Chicago’s slow climb from the cellar in real-time.

Cincinnati Reds

The Reds are sitting pretty in second place in the Central, waiting like everyone else for the Cardinals to start losing more so they can actually gain some ground, despite the fact that they are 6-4 in their last ten games. Meanwhile, our friends at Blog Red Machine are tasked with archiving that journey for posterity. On the minds of the Reds writers right now include the decline of Scott Rolen – another mainstay talent of the NL Central who’s age and talent are moving in opposite directions. They also have a good look at the first month of the Reds’ play – you will find striking similarities to the Brewers’ woes there. Finally, do take a look at the BRM Podcast, editor Steve Engbloom is insightful and funny and they do a great job with it.

Houston Astros

Yes, the Astros are still part of the NL Central for the time being. Don’t laugh though, as they are

currently outpacing our beloved Brew Crew and are in the midst of a three game winning streak. It all seems very Bad News Bears to me right now, but they have enough young talent to keep pace in this division. The three-man team at Climbing Tal’s Hill is deftly following the ‘Stros ascent to third place. Right now you can read about several examples of their apparent distaste for Manager Brad Mills – who has a penchant for managing games ad nauseam especially when it comes to pitchers. I understand they don’t have the best rotation and bullpen in the league, but that’s certainly not an excuse to use games as a pitcher parade. Speaking of pitching, you can also read about Wandy Rodriguez’s future in Houston, and the injury updates on Kyle Weiland and a host of relievers.

PittsBurgh Pirates

I have to admit it – I have a soft spot for Pirates. Part of this may be because I like to see a rebuilding effort that shows some results, but I think I can attribute just as much to the excellent work the men at Rum Bunter do in covering the team. The boys behind the site have been busy catching up with their prized catching prospect on Twitter, blowing up Pedro Alvarez home runs, tracking catcher Michael McKenry’s excellent season, keeping a close eye on manager Clint Hurdle’s blood pressure, and showing off Andrew McCutchen’s hidden talents. All in all it’s a lot of fun to keep an eye on the Pirates, even though they are producing less than stellar results through April.

St. Louis Cardinals

I am not quiet in my distaste for all things St. Louis Cardinals, but you have to hand it to them. With pressure on and a new manager, the RedBirds have managed to leave the Central in the dust for the time being. The Lady and Gentlemen at Redbird Rants have been reveling in the sweet glow of continued success. They start by rubbing it in with an April recap, and a toast to the town St. Louis itself. There’s an ode to Bob Costas as well to round-up just how awesome it must feel to be a Cardinal fan, if you were so inclined. They also have put their vote of confidence squarely behind the new skipper Mike Matheny, and the curious case of Allen Craig and his spot in the lineup. These are the problems you have when you are a winner – almost none. They also do a great job at daily and weekly recaps, so if you want to keep an eye on the enemy Redbird Rants is a high-quality source of information.

Milwaukee Brewers

Finally we come to a check-in of our hometown team, the Milwaukee Brewers. I’ll spare you the grisly details of our up-and-down season, which are well-known from the perspectives here at Reviewing the Brew. A good fan is, however, a well-educated fan and it is important to get a variety of opinions form every story. Here are some of my favorites from around the Brewers blogosphere:

Brew Crew Ball has some interesting notes about the approval ratings of Doug Melvin and Ron Roenicke, proving that in an election year the polls are the most important thing. It’s sure to spark a good discussion.

Disciples of Uecker has an excellent example of keeping cool under pressure, and a biting look at everyone’s favorite Brewer Scapegoat – Jeff Suppan.

John and Cait…Plus Nine show off their gastronomic muscles in rating Miller Park concessions.

And do remember to follow Ben Rouse’s Brewers Mission 162. He’s a young man who is living every Brewers fan’s dream – and he’s doing it for a good cause.