In the 5th inning of Tuesday’s Phillies – Reds matchup, Jimmy Rollins doubled for what on any other day would have been just another hit. But this particular hit marked the 2,000th of Rollins’ career making him only the 4th player in team history to reach the milestone. The other 3 players were Mike Schmidt (2,234), Richie Ashburn (2,217) and Ed Delahanty (2,207).
Rollins’ wife Johari and his infant daughter were on hand to witness the event. It was a special moment for Rollins, who will likely be considered the greatest shortstop in Phillies history by the time his career ends. But for now, Rollins says, “It’s great, but 3,000 is better.”
Unfortunately, the moment was slightly marred by a very strange Phillies 2-1 loss in which the umpires once again played a huge role. In the 4th inning, the Phillies had loaded the bases with one out and scored a run on a walk, much to the dismay of Reds pitcher Mat Latos. Latos looked horribly rattled and frustrated, setting up what should have been a huge inning for the Phillies. But just then, horrendous umpiring struck again.
Nate Schierholtz smacked what should have been an RBI-single to center; it was instead called an out even though it was clear to the naked eye, at full speed, that the ball hit the ground before entering the fielder’s glove. A 3-year old could have made the correct call, but not MLB umpires.
The base runners all froze in the confusion and the hit turned into an inning-ending double play instead. The “catch” was one out and the runner caught off 2nd base was the other. Not only did this gigantic blunder cost the Phillies that one run, it probably cost them the game. Because Latos was clearly falling apart and that RBI-single probably would have sent him off the deep end, translating into a big inning for the Phillies.
But that did not even have a chance to play out, thanks to the morons umpiring the game. The Phillies did have other chances to score and failed, but this screw-up really killed their momentum. Those idiots still get their paychecks and go on with their lives as MLB never holds any umpire accountable for blown calls. You know, the usual crap we all have to watch and live with. It is shameful.
The Phillies have one more shot at the Reds early this afternoon. Game time is 12:35pm.
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Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography
The Phillies held a memorial service at the ballpark today for Harry Kalas, which they shared with the fans, as well as Harry’s friends and family. Fans were able to pass by Harry’s casket, which sat on the field behind home plate, and were then seated to watch the services. This beautiful and extremely moving program included speeches from Mike Schmidt, Richard Ashburn, Mayor Michael Nutter, Phillies pitcher Jamie Moyer, and many other friends of Harry. The entire Phillies team attended the memorial, first passing by the casket to pay their respects, and then sitting in the stands behind home plate. Phillies of the past were also in attendance, including Steve Carlton, Greg Luzinski, Larry Christianson, Garry Maddox, Robin Roberts and many more.
The big tear-jerker of the day came when all Phillies players, past and present, were asked to take the field; they lined up two by two and literally lifted Harry’s casket and passed it down the line through each others hands until they reached the hearse. Those players at the end of the line, including Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard, Brett Myers, Carlos Ruiz and others, gently placed the casket into the rear of the hearse and everyone watched as Harry was driven out of the ballpark. Many were unable to contain their emotions and tears flowed freely. When I saw Shane Victorino crying, who just lost his grandmother in October, my heart sunk. To think what all these players have gone through this week, as well as everyone who knew Harry, is just heartbreaking.
What a tragic start to the 2009 season for the Phillies, who all seem to be downtrodden by this turn of events. All we can hope now is that they can filter those emotions into a positive, and dedicate their season to Harry’s memory.
The Phillies have lost 3 in a row now with tonight’s 8-5 loss to the Padres, despite a great outing from Brett Myers. Myers notched a quality start with 6 2/3 innings pitched and 3 runs allowed; he even contributed with a double at the plate and a run scored. But for the 2nd night in a row, Ryan Madson came in and gave the Padres the lead with one run allowed in the 8th. Chase Utley tied the game up again in the bottom of the inning with a lead-off home run to right.
Raul Ibanez followed with single and then his amazing base running landed him on 3rd base after a Jayson Werth single. With one out, Pedro Feliz collected the RBI on sac fly and Ibanez crossed home plate, giving the lead to the Phillies, 5-4. But that lead would not hold for long.
Brad Lidge, as expected, pitched the 9th inning, hoping to remain perfect in save opportunities. After receiving his award before the game for that perfect 2008 record, Lidge finally blew a save tonight, ending his streak of 47 in a row. And he didn’t just blow it; he really, really blew it. In 2/3 of an inning, Lidge gave up 4 runs, the majority of which came on a Kevin Kouzmanoff 3-run homer. That inning really took the wind out of the sails for the Phillies, and they went down easily in the bottom of the 9th.
Tomorrow’s game against the Padres will begin at 1:35pm with Chan Ho Park on the mound. I will be there, and hopefully, the Phillies can get things back on track. Maybe the Phanatic’s birthday celebration will lighten the mood? One can only hope…
Photos by Jenn
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Thanks to Todd Zolecki at The Zo Zone for posting a schedule of events to be held in tribute to the beloved Harry Kalas. I just bought a ticket to Friday night’s game so I will be there to participate in the tribute. Here is a brief overview of what will happen on Friday night before and during the 7:05pm against the Padres in Philly:
– The TV booth in which Harry broadcast since Citizens Bank Park opened in 2004 will be named the Harry Kalas Broadcast Booth, “That ball’s outta here!” A plaque will be hung to officially name the booth. The neighboring radio booth is named the Richie (“Whitey”) Ashburn Broadcast Booth, “This game’s easy, Harry.”
– The ceremonial first ball will be thrown by Harry’s three sons, Todd, Brad and Kane.
– The ceremonial first ball will be thrown by Harry’s three sons, Todd, Brad and Kane.
– Prior to the National Anthem, to be sung by Harry’s son Kane, there will be a moment of silence.
– All fans will receive an 8″x10″ color photograph of Harry.
– Harry’s signature will be displayed on the field during the seven-game home-stand, beginning on Friday.
– Also for the seven-game home-stand, a black drape will appear in front of the Phillies radio and TV booths and the Phillies flag in Ashburn Alley will be hung at half-mast.
– A video of Harry’s career will be aired on PhanaVision.
– During the seventh-inning stretch, a video of Harry singing “High Hopes” will be shown on PhanaVision. Fans will be encouraged to join in.
Other acknowledgements include:
– During the first half-inning of the game televised by Comcast Network Philadelphia (formerly CN8), there will be no announcer commentary.
– Throughout the remainder of the season, a billboard honoring Harry will be displayed on the outfield wall.
– As previously announced, an HK patch will be worn on Phillies uniforms this season, near the heart.
– Throughout the 2009 season, following every Phillies home run, Harry’s legendary “Outta Here!” home run call will be played over the PA system as the Liberty Bell lights up.
**Personally, I LOVE the idea of the home run call and think the Phillies should keep that in for good. Other teams play corny music after a home run; the Phillies ring a bell. Adding Harry’s call to the ringing of the bell on a permanent basis would be an outstanding tribute to him, his family and the fans who loved him.
A memorial tribute for Harry Kalas will be held at Citizens Bank Park on Saturday, April 18 as announced by the Kalas family and the Phillies. An opportunity to pay respects to the Hall of Fame broadcaster will be given on a first come, first served basis to as many fans as possible from 8:00 a.m. until 12:45 p.m. At that time, all fans in attendance will be directed to seats for an on-field tribute that will begin at 1:00 p.m. More details will be announced later.
The official cause of dead as reported by the Washington D.C. chief medical examiner’s office was “heart disease” as a result of high blood pressure and specifically, atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.
Here is a video I shot from behind the home plate screen of Harry singing High Hopes after the 9/30/07 NL East clinching game; you will also see Aaron Rowand and then Ryan Howard dumping beer over Harry’s head. Enjoy!:
Appropriately, more rain falls in DC:
The Phillies were supposed to go back to Washington tonight to continue their series with the Nats with Joe Blanton on the mound, hoping to redeem himself after a bad first outing. However, the game has been rained out; no word yet on a make-up plan.