After 13 years in the big leagues, Roy Halladay finally got his first taste of postseason play today against the Reds. He wasted no time taking full advantage of the opportunity. Halladay pitched a no-hitter and ended just 1 walk shy of his second perfect game of the season. The no-no was only the second ever in baseball history to be thrown in the postseason. And Halladay also became the first pitcher to ever throw a no hitter in both the regular season and the postseason.
Prior to the game, there were face painters, games, food and music from Mr. Greengenes:
That was followed by batting practice, player introductions and the ceremonial first pitch thrown by former Phillies pitcher, Scott Eyre. And of course, rally towels:
As the game began, Halladay relied on his defense as he followed the lead of Carlos Ruiz, who called an amazing game behind the plate.
Halladay was so good in this game, that he actually had more hits in the game than the Reds batters did. With two outs and two men on in the 2nd, Halladay smashed an RBI-single to left. Shane Victorino followed that up with 2 more RBI before Reds pitcher Edinson Volquez was pulled from the game with less than 2 innings pitched. With one run in the first on a Chase Utley sac fly, these four runs total were all Halladay needed.
After mowing down Reds hitters, both Halladay and the Phillies walked away with a huge win in Game 1 of the NLDS. The no-hitter was the icing on the cake.
I feel extremely fortunate to have been able to witness this extraordinary feat. It is a game I will never forget. The energy and excitement in the stadium was so thick you could feel it on your skin like thousands of goosebumps. Strangers celebrated with each other uninhibited, as if they were long time friends. I personally high-fived more people after the game then I ever have in my entire life combined. A woman later showed me her hands, which were bright red, and said she had high-fived so many people that her hands actually hurt. Of course, she was not that upset about it.
Today was an amazing start to the Phillies postseason, but there are still 10 more wins ahead to reach the ultimate goal. The team will be off tomorrow to soak in this win and then it is back to work again on Friday. Roy Oswalt gets the ball next; he has a very tough act to follow.
Here is the full Photo Album from today’s game. And this is a few shot video clips from the 9th inning, basically to show how loud it was in there. Sorry about the head…had some 6’5″ dude in front of me and I could not reach too well over him.
Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography