Heavens to Murgatroyd! Where the hell is everyone? It's been 45 days since anyone posted 'round these parts. I asked for a simple moratorium in observance of my new found success but this is much longer than I asked for or deserve! You know, we doubled our membership and this post only puts us two ahead of last year's total with 16 days remaining. Whitney surely has something to say - K-Rod, Putz? Certainly Mr. Doyle can chime in with the Bronx' gluttonous foray into the pitching market - CC and AJ? And you Mr. Russell, whose team always figures into the equation with the hottest free agent du jour, what say you? Is Tex taking his bat to Beantown?
The Phillies, World Championship notwithstanding, are going on with business as usual. Nothing flashy, just prudent moves based on sober reality. "Eating Raul" Ibanez will be patrolling left field replacing Pat the Bat (more on that later.) Jamie Moyer has been retained for 2 more seasons. Chan Ho Park will be competing for the 5th starters spot in Citizens Bank Park (no relation - its like Smith in the Koreas.) There's still dizzying talk of packaging 56 prospects to the Padres for Jake Peavey but I know better. That rumor will die a fairly inconspicuous death.
Back to Pat the Bat. I have trouble recalling any player in recent Phillies' history who compares to his place in club lore. He compares favorably with the all time greats in club history (it's relative.) He's behind only Del Ennis and Mike Schmidt in home runs. (Granted, there is Mike Schmidt at 548 and then Ennis and Burrell at about 300 home runs behind.) He's a World Champion who has had a few great moments (his run was the Series clincher.) However, it's all offset by what he didn't do. He shares some qualities with Von Hayes - so much potential, so much disappointment. He didn't come close to winning any batting titles, home run titles or RBI titles. He never carried the team for longer than a month. He still looked helpless at time flailing away at breaking pitches. He just seemed so damned aloof all the time.
What ultimately endeared Pat the Bat to Phillies fans in the end was that he took his beating standing up and he never let them see him cry. Many a thin skinned athlete took his wares elsewhere because the heat was too intense. Pat played it cool the entire time. In the end, he delivered in the biggest game of his career and was subsequently the championship parade grand marshal. He then accepted with typical dignity the fact that his club no longer needed his services. I hope Pat lands somewhere where the weather is always perfect and his contributions always welcomed. I have only one request. Please Pat, please, stay the hell away from Flushing.
Thanks for the memories old pal and good luck.