Results tagged ‘ NLCS ’

A Tough Loss

The Phillies took a tough loss today against the Dodgers to tie this NLCS series 1 game each.  Pedro Martinez was brilliant through 7 innings where he allowed only 2 hits and no runs.  You could not have asked for more out of him.  But Martinez was pulled before the 8th inning in favor of a pinch-hitter and that proved to be a costly move as the bullpen could not hold down the 1-0 lead.

The pen has been the Achilles heel of this team all year.  Yesterday, they pulled through; today, they did not.  Manager Charlie Manuel went through five pitchers in the 8th inning and they combined to blow the lead.  Chan Ho Park, who was amazing yesterday, started the inning and gave up two base hits with no outs.  But it looked like he may escape the jam when Russell Martin hit an easy double play ball to third.  No such luck…

In a rare and truly scary move, Chase Utley, for the second night in a row, overthrew first base which allowed the tying run to score and left 2 men on with 1 out.  Last night, the slow feed from Jimmy Rollins and off-balance throw appeared to blame.  But tonight, Utley just plain blew it.  He rushed the throw when he had plenty of time and killed any chance Park had of getting out of the inning unscathed.P8195352 Utley.jpg

Utley is human, of course.  And you cannot blame the loss on him when the only scoring the Phillies did all game was a solo homer by Ryan Howard.  But it was a terrible waste of a great performance by Martinez and an even bigger waste of the opportunity to go up 2-0 in what will be a very tough series for this team. 

JA Happ allowed the winning run to score for the Dodgers when he walked Andre Ethier with the bases loaded.  The run was charged to Park.  Chad Durbin got them out of the inning, but in the 9th, they offense went down 1-2-3.  And to add insult to injury, Utley made the last out of the game by flying out to Ethier in right.  I am betting that right now, Utley needs a hug; or maybe a big bowl of ice cream.  Stiff drink anyone?  Ugh.

This loss was depressing on a number of levels.  But the good news is that we now have 3 games in Philly, starting on Sunday night.  With any luck, and some sort of miracle in the bullpen, the Phillies can use the home field to get themselves back on track.

Photo by Jenn

Happy Bunny by Jim Benton

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

Phillies Take Game 1


The Phillies hopped on board the Chooch Train last night and rode it to a win over the Dodgers; Thumbnail image for P9129082 CR.jpgCarlos Ruiz smashed a 3-run homer in the 5th inning to give the Phillies a lead that they would never relinquish.  Raul Ibanez hit a 3-run shot of his own in the 8th to pad that lead.  That Ibanez guy is not too shabby either.

It was not all sunshine and roses though for the Phillies.  Cole Hamels looked like the pitcher of old for 4 innings but then, after Chooch’s 3-run shot and Ryan Howard’s 2 RBI in the 5th blasted the Phillies to that big 5-1 lead, Hamels began to unravel.   The Cardinal Sin in baseball – to give the other team a boost after you just put a hurting on them. 

Hamels allowed a lead-off double, a single and then appeared to have a double play ball hit to Jimmy Rollins.  The ball got stuck in his glove so the feed to Chase Utley was late and Utley overthrew to first in his haste.  But Hamels still had a 3 run lead and 2 outs.  Instead of focusing on that, he showed up his teammate by throwing his hands up in disgust at Utley, putting his hands on his hips and shaking his head.  Cardinal Sin #2 – showing up your teammate.  Hamels could not concentrate after that and gave away a 2-run homer to Manny Ramirez.

The Phillies got the win, but the gestures and attitude of Hamels is disgusting.  How many times have his teammates bailed him out of bad situations?  And this is the thanks they get?  No double play is ever a sure thing.  Besides, if Hamels had not put two men on base, he would not have been in that situation to begin with.  Utley was not pitching, as near as one can tell; Hamels was.  Hamels should be ashamed for the lack of respect he showed his team.

Ok, let us not dwell…we did win the game :O)  The most pleasant surprise of the night was Chan Ho Park, who in his first relief appearance since 9/16/09 after an injury, came back looking sharp as ever.  He pitched a scoreless, hitless inning and had a lot of movement on his pitches.  Welcome back Chan Ho!

Six relievers were used in all and everyone did their job, except Ryan Madson who had a 4 hit, 2 run 8th inning.  Madson has not looked good this post-season at all and it is beginning to be a real concern.  Luckily, he had a 4 run lead and Brad Lidge was able to close out the game in the 9th with the 2 run lead he was left with.  Lidge seems to have his confidence back, which is good to see, but Madson appears to be going to opposite direction.  He did get Ramirez out to end the 8th, but how reliable is Madson going to be from now forward?

And how about that bad umpiring…again.  The Dodgers decided to pinch run for Jim Thome in the 6th inning, but Randy Wolf was not ready; he did not have his spikes on.  The umpire actually let the Dodgers get away with a delay of several minutes while Wolf changed his shoes in the clubhouse!  JA Happ stood on the mound pacing, waiting for the game to resume.  Sorry ump – BAD call.  You cannot let the other team’s pitcher stiffen up while you wait for someone to change shoes.  If they are not ready to go, too bad for them.  Game on.

Game 2 will kick off this afternoon at 4:07pm with former Dodger, Pedro Martinez facing former Phillie, Vincente Padilla.  This should be another good one!  Go Phillies!!!!

Photo by Jenn

 

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Game On

It is finally Thursday!  Just a few short hours until the Phillies and Dodgers begin the battle for the NLCS title!  The final roster decisions have been made and few were interesting; Chan Ho Park did indeed make the roster and Kyle Kendrick did not, as I thought would happen.  But in a surprise move, Brett Myers was also left off and Eric Bruntlett added.  So, 11 pitchers instead of 12 and 1 more bench player.

Myers was very unhappy with the news, but maybe not entirely shocked.  His one outing in Game 2 of the NLDS did not go well; he walked two batters and hit another.  After to injuries this year, it appears Myers is not able to find his control yet.

As for the starters, it will be Cole Hamels tonight and Pedro Martinez tomorrow…maybe.  Martinez told reporters he has not gotten enough work in and that his BP session was “erratic.”  Either he does not feel ready, or this is some mental game he is playing with the Dodgers.  Whatever the case, it makes you a bit nervous, doesn’t it?

Some other fun notes about this series:

- The Phillies will be facing lots of old Phillies!  Larry Bowa, former player and manager, is the Dodgers 3rd base coach.  Pitchers Randy Wolf and Vincente Padilla are both former Phils as well as slugger, Jim Thome.

- Manny Ramirez used to play for Charlie Manuel in Cleveland and Manuel says he is “like a son” to him.

- Chan Ho Park, Pedro Martinez, Paul Bako and Jayson Werth are all former Dodgers.

- Both teams each have 8 players who were born in 1975 or earlier.  LOTS of experience :O)

- This is the fifth time the Phillies and Dodgers have met in the NLCS; they are split 2-2 lifetime.

- At 21 years old, pitcher Clayton Kershaw is the youngest player on either roster and will start the game for the Dodgers tonight.

Game time is 8:07pm….Get the rally towels going in your living room!PA071279.jpg

Go Phillies!!!!

Photo by Jenn

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

 

NLCS Roster Decisions

Nothing has been made officially yet, but expect a similar roster for the NLCS against the Dodgers as the Phillies had in the NLDS.  It looks likely that Cole Hamels will pitch game one since he is on full rest.  Plus, with the birth of his son and some time home with the wife and child, he should now be ready to focus on baseball.  Hamels has done exceptionally well against the Dodgers.  He threw a shut-out against them this past June and also beat them twice in last year’s NLCS.

Cliff Lee will remain a starter as well with JA Happ, Pedro Martinez and Joe Blanton being juggled around again from the pen to the starters spot.  The bullpen however may see a change with Chan Ho Park returning from injury.  He is travelling to LA with the team, so he may be in position to take a roster spot away from Kyle Kendrick.

The bullpen is still making many people very nervous.  Brad Lidge did save 2 games, but still does not look super sharp.  Ryan Madson, the other potential closer, blew 2 saves in the series in the 8th inning.  And Brett Myers, who has done the job before, played only 2/3 of an inning and walked 2 batters.  This is a huge weak spot, especially when compared to the Dodgers bullpen which is much better.   

As for the bench players, this will probably stay the same; Greg Dobbs, Matt Stairs, Ben Francisco and Miguel Cairo.  However, with 8 at-bats between these 4 in the NLDS, there was not a hit among them.  Stairs did walk once in a critical situation, but Cairo and Dobbs both went 0 for 3.  Could this open the door for Eric Bruntlett to step in for Cairo?  Probably not, but the bench players are still a concern.

Then again, when you have the big guns like Ryan Howard and Jayson Werth to bail the team out when they run into trouble, you have to like the Phillies chances.   So, here is the schedule:

Gm 1

PHI @ LAD

Thu

Oct. 15

8:07 PM

Gm 2

PHI @ LAD

Fri

Oct. 16

4:07 PM

Gm 3

LAD @ PHI

Sun

Oct. 18

8:07 PM

Gm 4

LAD @ PHI

Mon

Oct. 19

8:07 PM

Gm 5*

LAD @ PHI

Wed

Oct. 21

8:07 PM

Gm 6*

PHI @ LAD

Fri

Oct. 23

8:07 PM

Gm 7*

PHI @ LAD

Sat

Oct. 24

8:07 PM

 

And just for fun, let me introduce to you our newest family member and Phillies fan, Chase Utley Kitten.  He is a Blue Point Ragdoll:Chase kitten.jpg

Yes, I named him Chase Utley….I fully expect him to pick up a ball and glove by 3 years.  At 2 ½ months, we will have to settle for the jersey.

Go Phillies!

Comeback Win Sends Phillies To NLCS

For the second year in a row, the Phillies will face the Dodgers in the National League Championship Series.  The Phils beat the Rockies tonight with a 9th inning, 3-run comeback to win the NLDS series 3 games to 1.  It was another nail biter; many fans were calling for the oxygen tank, and not because of the Rocky mountain air.

Early on, this was a pitcher’s duel with Cliff Lee allowing only 1 run though 7 innings.  2 solo homers by Shane Victorino and Jayson Werth were the only scoring for the Phillies at that point.  But Lee ran into trouble in the 8th when he walked Dexter Fowler on 3 straight strikes that were called balls; the Pitch Tracker showed the pitches were in the zone and missed by the ump.  Nothing new; he missed calls all night long. 

But that walk led to big trouble.  Todd Helton hit what should have been a double play ball and Jimmy Rollins dropped the feed from Chase Utley, putting 2 runners on with 1 out.  DSCF1437edit.jpgRyan Madson came in and blew the inning wide open for the Rockies.  2 hits later and the Rockies were going into the 9th, at home, with a 4-2 lead.  By the way, that was Madson’s second blown save of this series.

In the 9th, Rollins singled and Utley walked to give Ryan Howard 2 runners in scoring position with 2 outs.  The Phillies had not had a single hit in the game with runners in scoring position at that point.  In fact, they even left the bases loaded twice in the game with 1 out and failed to score.  But this team just never gives up and Howard nailed a double to tie the game up.  Werth singled to score Howard and, with hearts pounding, the Phillies took the 5-4 lead into the bottom of the inning.

Scott Eyre, seemingly ok after twisting his ankle yesterday, got the 1st 2 outs, but also put 2 men on base.  So, Brad Lidge got the call for the final out and faced Troy Tulowitzki, the same batter he got to pop out to end yesterday’s game.  Lidge struck him out to win the game and send the Phillies back to the NLCS!

Also worth noting, Ben Francisco replaced Raul Ibanez in left late in the game as a defensive substitution.  Ibanez dropped a ball earlier in the game and Charlie Manuel was taking no chances.  The move paid off as Francisco made an amazing, diving catch in the 8th that saved 2 runs from scoring.

And now the champagne will flow as the Phillies celebrate their first 2009 post-season series victory.  And with any luck, 2 more such celebrations shall follow.  Go Phillies!

Photo by Jenn

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

 

 

2:00am Heroics Put Phillies One Win Away

The Phillies are 1 win away from advancing to the NLCS against the Dodgers after beating the Rockies last night 5-4.  They hold a 2-1 advantage in the series and also have the chance today to win 2 post-season games on the same day; last night’s game ended at 2:15am this morning and tonight will be a 6:07pm start time.  The Phillies finally got a prime time slot, since everyone else is done with their NLDS series.  Gee thanks, MLB, she says as she holds her eyes open with toothpicks…

This win was a true team effort with contributions up and down the line-up.  Chase Utley hit a solo homer in the 1st inning and the Rockies answered with 2 runs later that inning.  The Phillies took the lead again in the 4th with 3 runs.  It may have been more, but Pedro Feliz hit into a 1-2-3 double play with the bases loaded and no outs.  But Carlos Ruiz picked his teammate up and knocked an RBI single to give the Phillies the lead again. 

The two teams traded runs again in the 6th and 7th innings, but the Phillies took the lead for good in the 9th with some small ball.  Jimmy Rollins led off with a hit and Shane Victorino bunted him over.  Chase Utley hit a dribbler for a single and moved Jimmy to third; Ryan Howard knocked him in with a sac fly.  So the Phillies gave the ball to Brad Lidge who, despite making us all bite our fingernails again, got the save.



P9213509 Lidge.jpgLidge seems to have his confidence back, which is great news.  If the Phillies are going to win, they need him.  The pitching overall on both sides was shaky, but bad umpiring did not help either.  JA Happ got squeezed at the plate for his short 3 innings of work where he allowed 3 runs and was prematurely pinch hit for in the 4th when the potential to add on runs arose.  Happ throws pitches that move a lot in a diagonal pattern across the plate.  The ball passes over the plate and ends up in the catcher’s mitt towards the back corner of the plate.  The ump last night was watching where the ball ended up instead of where it crossed the plate and missed tons of calls.

But the ump did that on both sides and both starters were forced out of the game in under 4 innings.  Blown calls have been the story of this entire NLDS, not just the Phillies and the Rockies.  It even started with the Twins-Tigers 1 game playoff where a batter was clearly hit with a pitch but no one called it.  And it continued last night with the ball-strike calls and even the “dribbler” Utley hit in the ninth.  If you watch the replay, the ball hit Utley in the leg and therefore should have been foul.  Instead, it was a hit.  But both the Phillies and Rockies were victims of bad calls, so I guess in the end it evened out.

It does make you wonder though, how are these umpires continually allowed to affect the outcome of such important games?  Did you write your letters to Bug Selig last night as I suggested?  If so, it was a VERY big pile.  Anyone else out there tired of the bad calls and no accountability here?  Feel free to vent in the comments.

But the Phillies won the game and that is what really matters.  And they did it in the most awful conditions; game time temperature was 35 degrees, which ties for the coldest post-season game on record.  The game also took 4 hours and 6 minutes.  Yikes!  No sleep for me, but at least I am not grouchy ;O)

In other news, Scott Eyre was hurt in the game; he twisted his ankle coming off the mound.  No word yet on his condition, but we hope he is ok!

Cliff Lee gets the ball tonight and hopefully, he can repeat the amazing performance he had in Game 1.  Go Phillies!

Photo by Jenn

 

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A Storm Is Brewing

I got my playoff tickets in the mail yesterday; NLDS, NCLS and World Series. The seats I was assigned are nothing short of awesome. This makes me very, very nervous. Why, you may ask? It is the “buy a snow shovel and it will not snow” theory…I have great seats to the playoff, so does this mean either the Phillies will not make it or get swept out of the 1st round a’la 2007? Hmmmm…

But the bad play of this Phillies team recently just adds more fuel to the fire swirling around my nervous brain. Brad Lidge has been an absolute disaster; we have NO closer. Half the pitching staff is injured.
funny-pictures-cat-with-invisible-snow-shovel.jpgOur catcher is down with a sprained wrist and it is unclear when he will return. Many of our starting pitchers look like they are throwing little league games. This is a snow storm of epic proportions but the Phillies forgot to but a shovel.

Cliff Lee piled on more concern last night when he allowed 7 runs on 9 hit in 6 innings to the Brewers and looked really bad doing it. It was as if the ball were attached to the opponents bat with an invisible string and they just could not help but get hits. Lee started out looking like the Cy Young winner of 2008 and in his last 6 starts, he is 2-3 with a 6.35 ERA. Yuck!

And Lidge? He was put in to get some work in the 7th inning and still cannot manage to get through a clean inning. Lidge allowed 1 run on 2 hits and a stolen base. Ugh.

The offense was facing a very bad Brewers pitcher with an ERA well over 6 and still, they only managed 1 earned run off the guy in 7 innings. Where were the bats? Ryan Howard had 2 hits and 3 RBI in the game, but the rest of the team basically took the night off.

In fact, this entire team looks like it is plans on taking the rest of the regular season off and hope that somehow, magically, it will all work out in the end. I have got news for them: the Braves are breathing down your necks. Take nothing for granted. Now go out there, and play ball! I am not ready for winter to come early. Thank you, Phillies in advance for your cooperation.

PS: Magic number remains at 4.

Phils Sweep The Cards

Pitcher Brett Myers did not look happy with his performance today as Charlie Manuel pulled him in the 6th after he gave up a hit and an RBI to the opposing pitcher.  Myers lasted 5 1/3 innings, giving up 5 run on 9 hits, including 2 home runs.  Luckily, the offense bailed him out and the Phillies went on to a 10-7 victory over the Cardinals.

P2232834 Victorino.jpgShane Victorino continued his 14-game hitting streak today by going 4 for 5 with 3 RBI and ended up just a triple short of the cycle.  His only blunder of the day was getting picked off at first base when the pitcher faked to 3rd and then came back to 1st.  Victorino is very aggressive on the bases so this is bound to happen occasionally. 

Jayson Werth, with his family in attendance, hit another home run today; this one was 3-runs.  Yesterday, he hit a 2-run homer.  Werth also had a sac fly in the game, which gives him 4 RBI on the day.  A base running mistake on the sac fly by Werth may have cost the Phillies a few extra runs as Raul Ibanez got doubled up; he apparently thought it was going to be a hit and wandered way off 2nd base. 

P4139697 Werth.jpg
Ibanez also fumbled a ball in left field; he may have been able to throw a runner out at home had he not let the ball slip away.  And then he got tagged out at home plate in the 9th.  But really, it was Ibanez’s first “bad” day as a Phillie.  So, we totally forgive him :O)

Brad Lidge was sent in for the 9th in a non-save situation and immediately gave up a home run to Albert Pujols.  Lidge may have experienced some bad flashbacks about Pujols taking him deep in the NLCS of 2005.  However, he bounced right back and sent the next 3 batters down in order to end the game.  In fact, Pujols was almost non-existent in this 2-game series, save for that one home run, which was his only hit in the series.

Chase Utley was not in the line-up today; Manuel decided to sit him down after he suffered from a sore foot last night as a result of getting hit by a pitch days earlier.  Reports are that Utley is fine and was rather annoyed that he was scratched from the line-up.  He should be good to go tomorrow for the start of another short, 2-game series against the Mets.  Chan Ho Park will take on Johan Santana.  Do I really need to watch or can I just assume this one will be a lost cause?  Park has been awful and is probably only still in the rotation due to concerns about Cole Hamels getting well after an ankle sprain.  Cole – PLEASE get better!!!

Don’t forget to get on-line and VOTE for your All-Stars!  Get the Phillies to the game in St. Louis!

Photos by Jenn

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Higher Ticket Prices Changing The Fan Base

Ticket Prices.jpg

The Phillies announced that they will increasing ticket prices for the 2009 season, as demand for tickets is on the rise after the World Series win.  Most seats will cost $2-$3 more, and premium seats will go up $6 each, costing $50 a piece and lower infield seats go from $50 to $60, a $10 increase.  Season ticket packages will range from $1,300 to $ 4,100.  Phillies vice president of sales and ticket operations, John Weber, stated that while they are trying to mirror prices in similar markets, they did keep the current economy in mind.  “I think we could’ve increased it even further based on the demand we have,” Weber said. “I think we definitely kept it (down), keeping the economy and everything in mind.”  He also said that many seats have been the same price since 2004, as further justification.

It could be worse.  Look at the Nationals for example; their ticket prices for some seats are 50% higher than similar seats at Citizens Bank Park, and the Nats are a last place team.  However, while it is true that prices for a Phillies ticket have generally been lower than some other similar markets, this does not soften the blow.  Major League Baseball, in general, has been slowly but surely alienating the average fan.  The ticket prices have gone sky high and when you factor in the cost of ballpark food, drink, souvenirs and parking (and for some of us, gas costs), a family of four will spend anywhere from a minimum of $138 for nose bleed seats without buying any “extras” (4 tickets $88, parking $10, food & drink for 4 – $40 minimum, souvenirs optional) to $250 for decent seats; again, no “extras” (4 tickets $200, parking $10, food & drink for 4 – $40 minimum, souvenirs optional).  Add in the cost of toys for the kids, maybe a hat or tee shirt and other items, and you’ve dropped about $300 on ONE game.  Go to 2 games and you’ve spend the average Joe’s entire paycheck.  Your normal, everyday, hardworking blue collar people simply can’t afford this.  And a team that prides itself on being down to earth, blue-collar types, should be more sensitive to the plight of the average fan.

It was never more evident to me that baseball prices have gone WAY out whack than it was during the playoff run this year.  I was lucky enough to attend at least one game of every series this October at CBP, including game 4 of the World Series.  What I noticed was, as the playoffs progressed, the demographics of the crowd began to change.  The Division series against the Brewers was some of what you’d expect at a Phillies game; lots of families, college kids and generally a nice, friendly atmosphere, with some of the stiff  corporate movers thrown in.  Moving on to the League Championship series and then the World Series, I saw the crowd change even more.  Fewer families, fewer young people and more Corporate-types in suits.  Plus, there were LOTS of people who knew NOTHING about the game or any of the players and were just people with money ready to jump on the bandwagon.  And if you know anything about Philly fans, they KNOW their team.  But those fans are the ones who can’t afford $250 for ONE World Series ticket; and that is if they were lucky enough NOT to get robbed on E-Bay or by other on-line scalpers who were charging anywhere from $500 for a standing room only ticket to thousands of dollars for an actual seat. 

During the World Series game I attended, one man in a suit actually clobbered me, trying to reach over my head during batting practice to get a foul ball for his kid.  The kid asked his Dad who tossed the ball (it was Ryan Howard) and neither the kid nor the Dad knew who he was!  The Dad then instructed the kid (he looked about 10 years old) to climb over the seats and push me out of the way so he could get closer!  So there I am, trying to take pictures, and I have stuck-up, spoiled 10 year old kid kicking at my legs to try to get me to move.  Unbelievable.  You’d all be proud of me though; I didn’t budge.  Now, I let kids in front of me all the time…I am pretty tall and can usually shoot pictures over their heads.  But this behavior was just disgusting.  I looked down at him and told him that he needed to quit kicking me and go back to his father.  The stern look on my face got his attention and he finally moved on.

I am sure that could happen at any game, but the main point is that they were not REAL fans.  These are not the people who follow the team all year long and keeping coming back whether the team is winning or losing.  These people had no idea who Ryan Howard was!  And that was only one of many, many situations I found myself in and conversations I overheard.  People sitting around me were unfriendly and paid more attention to their PDA’s and cell phones than they did to the game.  Usually, I meet really great people and have fun conversations about the game with them, but these crowds were cut from a different cloth.  During the League Championship series, I even saw a woman 2 rows in front of me playing solitaire with a deck of cards on top of the food tray she flipped over onto her lap.  This was right in the middle of the game. 

There were still some of the usual fans, like me, wandering around, but we were sorely outnumbered; those fans who either saved up the money, called in favors or simply made good friends with their credit card companies (guilty!) to buy tickets.  But the invasion of the upper-class, “casual” fan was very apparent.  The prices of a post-season ballgame have driven away the die-hard fans who just can’t manage the finances and invited in Corporate America to take their places and regular-season ticket prices are heading in the same direction.  Big companies buy up tickets and hand them out as gifts or incentives for employees.  The result?  A large population of game-goers who arrive in the 2nd inning and leave in the 7th.  Sound familiar?  The LA Dodgers have followed this model for years.  They attract more casual fans than real ones, because the real fans can’t afford the prices.  Does Philly really want to mirror big cities like LA?  I should hope not. 

And it is not just Philly, it is all of Major League Baseball.  Fans everywhere are being shut-out from their favorite pastime and are forced to choose between a day at the ballpark or feeding their family.  Guess which one will win every time?  No contest.  So, drive us away, but remember, if you alienate enough of us, you run the risk of having long-time, loyal fans become resentful of a team they once loved.  And ultimately, it is the team, the city and the sport of baseball that will suffer the consequences.

By: Jenn Zambri-Dickerson

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Best Moments of the 2008 World Champs!

In chronological order, here are my Best Moments of the 2008 season for our World Champion Philadelphia Phillies:

·         April 17 – 21:  Chase Utley goes on his first of two 5 game home run hitting streaks, hitting 6 homers in 5 games and earning the National League’s Player of the Month Award for April.

·         Jayson Werth hits 3 home runs in one game on 5/16/08 vs. Toronto, tying a Phillies record with a career-high 8 RBI in one game.

·         Phillies score 35 total runs between two games from 5/25-5/26.  They beat the Astros 15-6 and then followed it up with a win over the Rockies by a score of 20-5.

·         5/28 – 6/2:  Chase Utley goes on another 5 game home run hitting streak and he also hits 7 homers total in 8 games (5/25-6/2).  Utley won the National League Player of the Week Award during this run.

·         Phillies send 2 players to the All-Star Game in mid-July:  Chase Utley and Brad Lidge.

·         After a bad start to the season, Brett Myers returns from a voluntary stint in the minor leagues on 7/23/08.  He goes 8-4 with a 3.06 ERA for the rest of the regular season after getting off to a 3-9 start with a 5.84 ERA.

·         Greg Dobbs sets the all-time Phillies single season pinch hit record on 7/26/08 with 21 total pinch hits.  The last person to do it was Doc Miller in 1913, almost a century ago.

·         After being swept by the LA Dodgers in a four game series in early August, the Phillies come back and return the favor later that month.  They sweep the Dodgers in their four game series at home in Philly.

·         Phillies Complete a Road Season Series Sweep of the Braves in Atlanta on 9/18/08.

·         Phillies win the NL East, ending the game on an amazing double play to preserve the save for Brad Lidge.  Jimmy Rollins makes a diving grab for the ball, flips to Chase Utley and then Utley completes the throw to Ryan Howard at first base to end the game.

·         Ryan Howard becomes the first Phillie ever with 3 consecutive 40 home run seasons.  Howard is also now the 3rd player ever for the Phillies to have at least 120 RBI’s in one season; the last time it happened was 1933.

·         Shane Victorino hit the first Grand Slam in Phillies post-season history during Game 2 of the NLDS on 10/2/08 against CC Sabathia of the Brewers.

·         Brett Myers’ batting performance in the same game, Game 2 of the NLDS, against CC Sabathia of the Brewers – Myers went 1 for 2 and also had a key 9-pitch walk in the 2nd inning to help set up the Victorino Grand Slam.

·         10/15/08:  Phillies beat the LA Dodgers 4 games to 1 in the NLCS behind the rocket arm of series MVP, Cole Hamels.  They clinch their 6th opportunity ever in franchise history to compete in the World Series.

·         Jamie Moyer pitches Game 3 of the World Series on 10/25/08 while sick with the stomach flu.  His wife says he was up all night getting sick and sweating through a fever.  Despite this, he pitches 6 1/3 innings of 3 run ball.  The Phillies go on to win the game.

·         Brad Lidge gets the final out, striking out Eric Hinske of the Rays, to clinch the 2008 World Championship!  He goes 48 for 48 in save opportunities this year.  And all this came after injuring his knee on the very first pitch he threw in Spring Training. Lidge comes back from surgery and has the perfect season.

·         And my #1 moment:  Phillies win the World Series and become “World F*#@ Champions!”  Well spoken, Mr. Utley. J

So that’s a wrap!  Please add any of your favorite moments in the comments section below to share with everyone.  Phillies are World Champions!!!!!!!!!!  Celebrate!!!!!!!!!!!!

Read more at MY OTHER HOME PAGE!  Phillies Phollowers has joined forces with Phightin’ Phils Phorum!  Please check out our new site and bookmark it.

And for the football fans, I have also started a Miami Dolphins page, The Dolphin Pod!  All Dol-Fans, and anyone else who wants to say hello is welcome!

Remember also to check out our homepage My Team Rivals and our Phillies, Flyers, Eagles, Billy Penn Curse, Reinstate Pete Rose,  Phillies Mets Rivalry, Phillies Marlins Rivalry, and Phillies Braves Rivalry pages!

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