Moustakas enjoys time on Reds Caravan

January 17th, 2020

He has been a Red for only six weeks, but is already becoming a familiar face and fan favorite in Reds Country.

From Thursday through Saturday, the prized offseason acquisition joined some fellow teammates, alumni, broadcasters and front-office members on the North Tour of the 2020 Reds Caravan presented by the Cincinnati Regional Tourism Network. The annual event that sends Reds representatives on four separate tours through five states is one of the many ways in which the organization shows its appreciation for its passionate fanbase.

Before hitting the road with manager David Bell, former catcher Corky Miller, Minor League outfielder Narciso Crook and others on the North Tour's 779.2-mile journey through Ohio, Moustakas spoke about what the next three days would bring.

“It’s a great chance to get out there and meet the fans in their home cities and have a chance to go see them,” he said. “They come see us a lot, so it’ll be a good role reversal to get out there and enjoy the fans in their hometowns.

“We’re fortunate to be able to go out and play baseball as a profession [and] as a job. We couldn’t do this without the support of the fans and them coming out every single day, so to be able to go out there and see them in their cities, it means a lot to us as well as them.”

A large number of the fans at the many stops along the way don’t necessarily have the chance to come to Great American Ball Park and cheer the team on in person, so the Caravan is their best opportunity to see the Reds up close. At each of the North Tour’s 13 destinations, Moustakas and his fellow tour members sign autographs, answer questions and engage with fans eagerly awaiting their arrival.

“My favorite part has been the school visits,” he said. “I enjoy interacting with the kids, and they ask great questions.”

One of those questions saw the man they call "Moose” get his first unofficial workout in as a Red, as a student at Shenandoah Middle School asked who was the fastest person among the four players and coaches. A test was held as Moustakas, Crook, Miller and Bell raced across the gym, and Crook took first place.

As short as his Reds tenure has been so far, this isn’t Moustakas’ first major experience interacting with Reds fans. While the ink was still drying after officially joining the team in early December, he stuck around Cincinnati that weekend and participated in the team’s biggest offseason undertaking, Redsfest.

Moustakas is enjoying these offseason activities with the Reds, but make no mistake about where his focus lies as the season approaches. He’s already won over Reds Country off the field, but he's itching to make an impression on the field.

“This is all fun and I enjoy coming out here and doing this stuff, but I love playing baseball,” he said. “So I’m excited to get out there in Spring Training and get to meet the guys and hang out with them. This is awesome, though, and I’m having a good time coming out here.”