Sun Sets on Phils

Sunday, October 7, 2007

A balmy, breezy, 81-degree day in Denver yesterday turned into a cold night for the Phillies.

Just as the game was about to begin, a cold front came busting through dropping the temps to the 50s.  Unfortunately, the Phillies bats resembled the front….cold. 

Now, the Rockies prepare for the Diamondbacks while the Phillies chartered home, arriving this evening as the sun was setting on Citizens Bank Park. Quite fitting.

The game included a second-inning delay when the lights went out due to a computer glitch.  I swear the Phillies scored six runs during the darkness but no one saw what I saw.

It is hard to understand how or why the Phillies offense couldn’t produce in the three-game series.  As a team, they batted .172 or 102 points under their regular season average.  The highest scoring team in the NL could must just eight runs over three games. That’s baseball.

This series reminded me of the 1976 Phillies who won the East and then were swept in three by the Big Red Machine from Cincinnati.  This time, it was the Kid Rocks from Denver.  So, Rocktober continues in the mile high city.

This year’s team got a taste of the postseason which can only help in the future.  It was a learning experience same as the near misses of the previous two seasons.  Just painful lessons.

Once the last out was recorded, one-by-one the Phillies trudged up the steps from the dugout to the clubhouse.  Heads were down.  While you could hear the roar of the crowd outside, silence ruled the Phillies clubhouse.

Players sat motionless in front of their lockers.  Major League Baseball’s regulations say the clubhouse of the winning team on a clinching game is opened immediately to the media.  The losers, five minutes of closed time. 

Charlie Manuel wanted to talk to the team and I just felt five minutes was too short.  When you see the players’ reactions to being eliminated, rules are replaced by common sense, in my opinion.  The clubhouse was opened 11 minutes after the last out. 

Slowly players began to move about and one-by-one group interviews began to take place.  Aaron Rowand was the first player to face the music.  That’s standard for him.

So, the season is now officially over.  It was a disappointing finish, disappointing to the team, the organization but most importantly, the fans.

But, it doesn’t diminish that we are the National League Eastern Division champions.  They can’t take that away.

8:05 p.m.

1 Comment

Of course I am sad that the Phillies were swept, but it was a great season. Thank you to all the Phillies and everyone in the organization. See you in ’08!


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