Reds legend Johnny Bench joined the broadcast in Cincinnati and went after ownership for failing to bring in a shortstop.
Cincinnati Reds fans already loved Johnny Bench, but Monday’s appearance on the broadest as their team battled the New York Mets gave them even more reason to esteem the Hall-of-Fame catcher.
Bench sat down in the booth and didn’t hold back on any subject. Notably, he took a shot at Reds ownership for failing to bring in a shortstop in free agency or via a trade.
“We had all the time to get a shortstop and didn’t get a SS,” Bench said.
Reds fans absolutely loved hearing Bench say what many had been complaining about on social media and elsewhere all season.
Cincinnati has turned to Kyle Farmer as a shortstop for much of the season, but he’s not a permanent fixture in that role. It’s been clear for awhile that the team could use an upgrade for that spot, they just haven’t gotten a move done.
They had options in free agency, but those fell by the wayside. Watching the Milwaukee Brewers trade two relievers for Willy Adames from the Tampa Bay Rays was particularly frustrating for fans, especially as he was named the National League Player of the Week after an outstanding series in Cincinnati following the All-Star break. Milwaukee swept the Reds in that series to go ahead seven games in the NL Central.
Bench’s digs weren’t only reserved for his former team. He also called out the Mets, who committed four fielding errors against the Reds, wondering if New York picked up an unwanted lesson in their series with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Cincinnati’s ownership may not have enjoyed Bench’s appearance as much as fans and neutrals, but for entertainment value, bringing him back seems like a good idea.