The Phillies Win It All

“You know Geoff,” I’ve been told a dozen times in the last few days, “These are Philadelphia fans who threw snowballs at Santa.”

The Phillies won the World Series. It’s strange that I, a well documented Phillies fan, should be so late to the game with this news. They beat Tampa last night to win the Series 4-1. Helaine and I are very happy-obviously.

It’s a shame this series was touted as uninteresting–played between two teams that no one cared about. Yes, that did diminish my enjoyment. I probably shouldn’t be so shallow, but I am. It was actually a well played series by two really good teams.

“You know Geoff,” I’ve been told a dozen times in the last few days, “these are Philadelphia fans who threw snowballs at Santa.” Enough. I moved to Philly in 1975 and it was legend before my arrival. Let it go. The city would have gotten paroled for manslaughter sooner!

I am impressed with many of the Phillies individually. Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins and Ryan Howard are bright guys. It’s a pleasure to hear them interviewed. Charlie Manuel is a steady hand who never seems to panic–especially in situations where I would.

Helaine especially likes Chris Coste (who didn’t get an at-bat during the World Series), backup catcher and author of “The 33 Year Old Rookie.” After reading his book, she sent him an email which he answered. Yes–that makes a difference.

Based on place of birth I should be a Mets fan. In fact my folks took my sister and me to Shea Stadium a few weeks before it opened in the early 60s. We got to stroll the outifield on that sunny Sunday afternoon. For an apartment dweller, that beautiful expanse of emerald green grass was exquisitely foreign.

But it was Philadelphia where I realized I wasn’t a kid any more. It’s where I worked the second half of the seventies. I was there at “The Vet” for the 1977 National League Playoffs when the fans intimidated Bert Hooten with the loudest crowd noise I’ve ever heard.

Of course, Philadelphia is also where I met rabid Phillies fan Helaine.

The fun of a World Series win is short lived. Pitchers and catchers report in February. At that point it’s, “what have you done for me lately?” The anguish will start again.

Is This The Year For The Phillies?

Helaine called me at work. She wanted to know how to ‘watch’ the Eagles game on the computer. She wasn’t talking about watching video. She wanted the clever web applet that visually displays everything happening on the field. I sent her to

She couldn’t watch Eagles game video anyway. She was already watching a video feed from the Phillies game, streaming in from Pittsburgh.

Helaine is always a rabid Phillies fan, but we both know this year holds the possibility of post season play, or last minute heartbreak. The Phils are currently three games behind the Mets and tied for the National League Wild Card berth.

“No pitching. They’ll never make it past the All Star break.” That was the prevailing wisdom early on. They opened the season with a horrendous losing streak. It was a fan’s worst dream come true.

Then, they started to win.

A few nights ago, Jimmy Rollins hustled his way to a triple. “You can see they want to win,” Helaine said. Every team wants to win. She meant they are putting in extra effort, because there’s the thought that effort might pay off. Rollins’ base running was just a more visible example.

Helaine and I are going away in October. Tonight she tolld me she was worried how that might impact our watching the Phils, should they make it to post-season play.

And you wonder why I love her like I do!