2012 was a big year for Cincinnati sports fans. We watched as our beloved RedLegs fought and climbed their way out of sticky situations. The Red kept us on the edge of our seats in Great American Ballpark. We watched them hang on and come from behind to win tough games, we were introduced to new players who stepped in and shined as stars like Joey Votto went down with injury, and we cheered when Brandon Phillips made it rain every time he got on base. They gave us a postseason berth and the hope that the team will continue to dominate the Central in 2013.
The Cincinnati Bearcats gave us a big start to the men’s basketball season. They were 12-0 to kick off the college basketball frenzy and finished 2012 with a 13-1 record. Bearcats football gave us another Big East Title and another College Football Bowl Win. If 2012 wasn’t fun enough in the football program, their future promises to be even brighter and more exciting as the team welcomed Tommy Tuberville in 2012 as the new head coach of UC’s football program moving forward in 2013.
Then there were the Cincinnati Bengals. The team surprised us once again behind second year quarterback/receiver combo Andy Dalton and A.J. Green. Cincinnati finished the season with a 10-6 record, and for the first time under the duo split wins with their division foes the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers. They also led the team to their second consecutive playoff berth for the first time in 30 years.
It was definitely good to be a Cincinnati sports fan in 2012. What 2013 will bring us; only the future knows. However, the groundwork has been laid and the teams have given us hope for the New Year and new championships.
Let’s take a look back at our favorite moments of 2012 here at Riverfront Ball:
For me, the greatest Cincinnati sports moment of the year was watching Barry Larkin, the hero of Silverton, get inducted into the Hall of Fame, and in conjunction have his glorious number eleven retired by the Reds. Barry played on one of the greatest Reds’ teams of all time, the 1990 squad, but he also played in the 2000’s, which were some of the worst. Throughout his illustrious career, Barry never complained or demanded special treatment and he always gave his all, day in and day out. Growing up he was everybody’s favorite player. Now the generations of Baseball fans to come will be able to visit Cooperstown and understand just how special Barry Larkin was both to Baseball and to the city of Cincinnati as the hometown kid who made it big.
The year was good to many Cincinnati sports teams. My favorite moment this year actually came in the month of December and it involved the Cincinnati Bengals. I’m sure many of you know where I’m heading with this one. If you guess week 16 against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Pittsburgh you were right. The reason this was my favorite moment was because it secured a Bengals playoff berth for the second consecutive year and knocked Pittsburgh out of playoff contention. Talk about killing two birds with one stone right there. Cincinnati ended the year 10-6 with a wildcard spot. Let’s hope 2013 will bring more Bengals wins and a deep playoff run. Who Dey!
My favorite moment of the past year goes back to September 28, 2012. That is a date that will be in all of our hearts for a long time in the ‘Natti. Homer Bailey pitched the Reds first no-hitter since Tom Browning’s perfect game in the same month in 1988. It was a beautiful piece of work, as Bailey tossed 10 strike outs and walked one man in his 115 pitches, in which a total of 74 were strikes. Cincinnati’s pitching excelled all year as guys like Bailey, Latos, and Chapman stepped up to improve their games in the 2012 season.