• September 29, 2022

Is The Phillies 2008 Championship Honeymoon Over?

In 2009 when the Phillies lost in the World Series to the New York Yankees I was sad but I did not get upset the way I would have pre-2008, I felt lucky just to see the baseball team that was a bottom dweller in my childhood be recognized as a consistently good team.

In 2010 when Ryan Howard was caught looking at a called third strike to end the NLCS I was angry, but it only lasted a day or so, I still was happy that my baseball team went deep into October in three consecutive seasons. Last week when the Phillies were shut out 1-0 to end the NLDS, I was angry and a week later I the anger is still present.

I refuse to watch Sports Center, because the pain of watching the NLCS highlights is too much to bare. That should have been the Phillies, I had plans to be celebrating at Cottman and Frankford right about now, and it never came to fruition, for the first time in my life time the Phillies underachieved.

Last December I was jumping for joy banging pots and pans celebrating the return of Cliff Lee, in my mind I knew it did not guarantee a championship, but it at the very least guaranteed another World Series trip. The season started and the offense worried me, like it did most other Phillies fans, I never said it out loud but I often wondered if they should have kept Jayson Werth. Ruben Amaro made me look like a fool for letting that question enter my brain because he goes and gets the Phillies Hunter Pence who is younger, better, and cheaper than Werth. Much like the signing of Lee, I thought at the very least this guaranteed us our third World Series Trip in four seasons.

Next the post season arrived and there I sat high atop section 431 the Phillies a 4-0 lead in game two, a sweep and how the Phillies matched up with the Brewers were the thoughts going through my head. I was pretty certain the world was going to end before Lee blew a four-run lead. Yet, Lee let me down, big time. Little did I know it was just the beginning, the entire Phillies offense disappointed me in games three, four and five, and Roy Oswalt became the second of the four aces to wet the bed in the 2011 post season in game four.

I woke up the Saturday morning after game five in disbelief and pissed. The whole summer I waited for the fall to come, and it was a disaster. I felt like the guy who got the fake scratch off lottery ticket for Christmas after his family told him he did not win the money. I jumped for joy after the Phils got Lee and Pence, and it was all for nothing they finished in the same spot they did when their number two play-off starter was Kyle Kendrick back in 2007.

All of these thoughts left me very angry, and now have me questioning if it is time to lift the free pass I gave the Phillies organization the past three seasons. When Lidge stunk in 2009, I did not get mad or even think to boo him because he won me a title, when Charlie Manuel refused to play small ball in every single close game this season, I did not say word, I just thought well this approach got me to my first parade.

Now, the team underachieved they should have went further and the Philly fan in me from the 90’s and early 2000’s is ready to start complaining and blaming people again. Am I wrong to get angry at the Phillies? Probably, but is it wrong to get paid as the top pitcher in baseball and blow a 4-0 lead in game 2 of the NLDS, definitely.

Jerry Brennan

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jakedog
jakedog
October 15, 2011 8:14 am

The best ab the phillies had in four post seasons was brett myers against sabathia game 3 of the nlds, foul off after foul off, leading to a walk and a big inning, the phillies have not had an ab like that since

paulman
paulman
October 15, 2011 9:07 am

Good article Jerry and yes, it’s way past the time for the Phils to continue to get a free pass from the local media and their fans.. It’s amazing that a Team with so much Expectations,Promise and yes ,Hype ,underperforms and fans can forgive and move on quickly, where the same thing happens across the street in football pads and the fans & media are wanting to hang half the organization from the Walt Whitman Bridg, fire the Coaches, the GM..

jakedog
jakedog
October 15, 2011 10:47 am

Paulman the demographics that support the two franchises are completely different, at game five vast majority of fans in their twenty, thirsty, Ashburn alley is good time, happening place, the eagles draw the older, more cynical person like yourself

and the honeymoon continues and will continue and with this pitching the Phillies will be in the hunt for another championship for at least 3 years

paulman
paulman
October 15, 2011 11:07 am

I disagree with you Jakedog though I do admit that for th eyounger crowd
It’s a “Cool Thing” to go to CBP as a Social Event and to be seen reather than watch every pitch of a ballgame..
The biggest difference I see between the Fan Base is the large % of Women who follow and love the Phillies.. They may not know a whole lot about the strategies, double switches, or the rest of the MLB but they do love their PHitin Phils and genreally speaking are not going to be as critical or cynical as us guys who have followed the Team sinec we were kids.. Where we anguish over the lost opportunities of the last 2 Season.. For many of the women, it’s a fun time to take the kids, enjoy some comraderie but probably are not going to take losses as hard as we do.. This is not a knock mind you, but it’s one of million difference’s between men and women… Dr Paulman

bobbyuk
bobbyuk
October 17, 2011 5:38 am

To the author of this article–how long have you been watching sports in general? Nothing is guaranteed in sports. The 18-0 Patriots should have taught you something. And to prove their derailing of the Phils wasn’t a fluke, the Cards took apart the Brewers.

paulman
paulman
October 17, 2011 4:42 pm

Philadelphia Teams as their Local Media and Fans are Overrated and Filled with Hot Air, just like most of City Council & the School Boards are.. Good Greif..

PCrow
PCrow
October 19, 2011 10:24 am

An interesting approach I read somewhere about building a team with the goal to make the playoffs, not championship. What it means is that the world series champ is not always the best team of the year, just the best team at that time. If you look at the number of trips to the world series and the number of wins, the Phils (abait a small sample size) have a decent winning pct. You would think the Yankees would have higher pct, but it sits around 25%.

What this means is that you should build a team to make it to the playoffs every year, and if you happen to win once out of several tries, you are doing well.