Phinally…Phillies are World Series champions!

Brad Lidge closes out the 2008 World Series
Brad Lidge closes out the 2008 World Series. (Source: Philly.com)

For the first time since 1980 and for only the second time in franchise history, the Philadelphia Phillies are the world champions of baseball after beating the Tampa Bay Rays, 4-3, at Citizens Bank Park on October 29, 2008. The Phils won the best-of-seven series in five games.

The victory also gives Philadelphia its first major professional sports title since 1983, when the Sixers won the NBA championship.

Savor this, Philly fans…you deserve this.

And congratulations to Charlie Manuel and the 2008 Fightin’ Phils! Thank you very much for this.

Video: Victorino hits grand slam off Sabathia, NLDS Game 2, 10/2/08

Here is video of Shane Victorino’s second-inning, two-out grand slam off C.C. Sabathia that gave the Phillies a 5-1 lead over the Brewers in Game 2 of their NL Division Series on Oct. 2, 2008. The Phils went on to win 5-2 and take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series.

The video is from the TBS broadcast, while the audio is from Phillies radio flagship station, WPHT 1210 AM (featuring Scott Franzke and former Phillies reliever Larry Andersen, who is going nuts in the background).

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Video: Brett Myers’ epic NLDS Game 2 walk off C.C. Sabathia (pitches 7-9)

Here is video of Phillies starting pitcher Brett Myers’ epic, nine-pitch, two-out walk off Brewers ace C.C. Sabathia in the second inning of Game 2 of their NL Division Series on Oct. 2, 2008. The video, shot from the right-field, upper-deck stands, picks up at pitch number 7 of the at-bat. After Myers walked, Jimmy Rollins walked on four pitches to load the bases for Shane Victorino, who deposited a 1-2 pitch into the left field seats for a grand slam that put the Phillies up 5-1 en route to a 5-2 victory. I was at the game in Sect. 431 far down the left field line…and it was freakin’ awesome.

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2007 Phillies: The Team to Beat, Indeed!

Phillies celebrate 2007 NL East title

Congratulations to the 2007 National League Eastern Division Champion Philadelphia Phillies! As Phillies shortstop — and NL Most Valuable Player candidate — Jimmy Rollins (below) said before the season began, the Phils were “the team to beat” in the NL East.

Oh, and one more thing…note to Mets manager Willie Randolph and catcher Paul Lo Duca…we’re sipping champagne and dancing on the field…what are you doing now?

NY Daily News back page - Oct. 1, 2007

YouTube: An intelligent commentary on the Phillies’ Pat Burrell

As a Phillies fan, I am often embarrassed by the “baseball stupidity” of those who root for the Phillies with me. They boo people based on reputation and stories put out there by equally idiotic media types and the cosmically idiotic Dallas Green, instead of actually looking at stats and seeing how productive players actually are.

Philly has a tendency to cheer for the guy with the bloody face and dirty uniform…even though he is batting .240 and has a lower on-base percentage than I do. I actually heard a guy sitting a couple of seats away from me at Citizens Bank Park say, “I love Tomas Perez. I hope the Phillies never get rid of him.”

Now, Tomas Perez sucked…but fans loved him because he would throw shaving cream pies in the faces of his teammates after exciting wins. Ugh.

Anyway, here is a great video that actually offers a intelligent, statistics-based argument why current Phillies left fielder Pat Burrell is undeserving of much of the criticism dumped on him over the past couple of years, but especially as of late.

RIP Dave “MVPsoft” Snyder

As you probably know, I am a huge Phillies fan. I also consider myself relatively intelligent and, of course, I’m an Internet geek.

That’s why one of my favorite Web sites is PhilliesPhans.com, which features the Renegade Phan Phorum. The Phorum has some of the most intelligent baseball–and non-baseball–conversation around and exists at the opposite end of the spectrum from Philly’s so-called sports radio station, 610 WIP-AM.

I haven’t posted too often on PhilliesPhans.com, but I read it a lot because there are many conversations about sports, news, politics and even religion.

PhilliesPhans.com was started several years ago by a Philly-area transplant named Dave Snyder, who was the owner of MVP Software in Grand Rapids, Mich.

Before tonight, that sentence would have read “…Dave Snyder, who is the owner…”

I went to check the site earlier this evening to see if anything was going on and saw this thread title:

Is MVPSoft OK?

Now, MVPsoft is…was…Dave’s screen name. The thread’s initial poster went on to say he saw on another message board that Dave had been killed in a car accident today (as it turned out, the poster had been on a Rutgers message board where Dave’s cousin, whose son recently signed to play college football at Dave’s alma mater, Rutgers, broke the sad news). Since there had been no comments about it on the board Dave created, that first poster figured there was nothing to it.

But soon links started appearing on Michigan news sites that confirmed the worst…

I-196 clear after fatal accident

One Man Dies in I-196 Accident

So, yeah, my only connection to this man was that he created a Web site that has become a big part of my daily routine. Yet, it still feels like I have been punched in the gut.

He gave intelligent Phillies fans a place to go and get away from the idiotic rhetoric written in the Philly newspapers and being talked about on WIP.

At least I know I’m not the only one who feels like this.

The reason for this outpouring of emotion is because when Major League Baseball Advanced Media first took over the Web sites for every MLB team a few years ago and completely messed up the fan communitiy the old Phillies.com site had built, Dave stepped up to host a Phillies message board that would foster intelligent conversation based on analysis and thought…not one that would allow trolling and name-calling. Through the years, PhilliesPhans.com evolved into one of the best online communities around.

However, there were several dust-ups that led to many popular PP.com posters being banned by Dave for breaking his rules one too many times. But those dust-ups would lead to the creation of new Phan communities, PhilliesBoard.com and BackSheGoes.com, which are now called home by former and current PP.com members. In fact, it was just this past December when Dave pulled the plug on the Phorum for a few days after a thread went out of control and he contemplated shutting it down for good. However, he was convinced by the members to bring it back under new registration and posting rules.

So even though many PP.com members had battles with Dave at one time or another, one thing is certain: He was a man of principle devoted to his family and the Phillies. And a huge number of Phans “met” through the community he built.

You will be missed, MVPsoft.

UPDATE (2/11/07): I have just read that, in a strange twist of fate, it was exactly six years ago today that Dave launched the Renegade Phan Phorum at PhilliesPhans.com.

😦

Well…pitchers and catchers report in less than a month

So…now that the Eagles’ season is over and the Flyers and Sixers are bringing new meaning to the word “horrid,” it’s time to start shifting my attention back to my greatest passion, the Philadelphia Phillies…led by 2006 National League Most Valuable Player Ryan Howard (pictured, courtesy of Eliot J. Schechter/Getty Images).

Ryan Howard wins NL MVP!


Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard has won the 2006 National League Most Valuable Player Award, the Baseball Writers Association of America announced Monday.

Howard, who turned 27 on Sunday, earned the MVP award in the season after capturing NL Rookie of the Year honors in 2005. Of the 32 ballots submitted by two baseball writers in each league city, Howard was listed first on 20 and second on the other 12 for a total of 388 points, based on the tabulation system that gives 14 points for a first-place vote, nine for a second-place vote, eight for a third-place vote and on down to one for a 10th-place vote.

The Phillies’ slugger led Major League Baseball in home runs with 58, runs batted in with 149 and total bases with 393 while batting .313 for the Phillies, who were knocked out of playoff contention on the second-to-last day of the season.

Howard’s 58 homers set the Phils’ franchise record for home runs in a season, topping Mike Schmidt’s 1980 record of 48. Howard also equaled Jimmie Foxx’s Philadelphia baseball record for most homers in a season. Foxx hit 58 for the Philadelphia Athletics in 1932.

(Photo credit: Rusty Kennedy/AP)