New Era Begins

The Delta charter left Atlanta last evening after the Phillies ended a dismal road trip and equally dismal season. Not all players were on the flight as some headed home without returning to Philly. Some won’t be in a Phillies uniform again.

During the season’s last weekend, they lost a game in 2 hours, 7 minutes on Friday and 3 hours, 27 minutes yesterday. Their last win came Saturday with J-Roll making a brilliant game-ending out. It didn’t appear to be a big loss for the Braves but it was. It kept them from having home field advantage throughout the playoffs. They now open with the Dodgers, who have three top starters in their rotation. St. Louis now gets the winner of Cincinnati/Pittsburgh.

Looking back at the first losing season since 2002, there were a lot of deficiencies, hitting, defense, base-running, starting pitching, bullpen, pitch selection and stopping the enemy’s running game but lack luster offense has to rank #1.

They had a winning record at home (43-38) but finished 30-51 on the road, their poorest since they had the same mark in 1997. Overall record was the worst since 2000 (65-97). With their low finish, the Phillies get the seventh selection in the first round of the draft next summer.

Look at it this way, the Phillies won 43 home games. The Eagles haven’t won a home game since a year ago today.

The season is history. Charlie Brown said it best, “Good riddance.”

Packing up the gear until next spring is the chore of the clubhouse staff these next few days. Some players have already packed, other did it after returning to Citizens Bank Park last night and a few will do so today.

Ruben and Ryno face the tough decision in selecting a coaching staff. The re-shaping of the roster will begin quickly.

A new era brings, the era of Ryne Sandberg, a stickler on preparation and organization. Should be an interesting off-season and spring training.

It’s a Fact
Indians lost 94 games a year ago, Red Sox, 93, and both are in the playoffs this season.

This Date
September 30, 1951–CF Richie Ashburn goes 4-for-8 in final game to finish with 221 hits, the first Phillie to lead the NL in 18 years. Phillies defeat Brooklyn, 9-8, in 14 innings at Shibe Park.

September 30, 1971–CF Willie Montanez sets a club rookie record with his 30th home run as the Phillies end the season with a 4-3 loss to Pittsburgh at the Vet.

September 30, 1978–LHP Randy Lerch (11-8) hits two home runs and picks up the win as the Phillies capture their third straight NL East title, 10-8, at Pittsburgh.

September 30, 2007–Phillies beat Washington, 6-1, at Citizens Bank Park and clinch National League Eastern Division title in last game of season as New York Mets who were tied with Phillies for first place lost to Florida, 8-1.

September 30, 2009–Phillies beat Houston, 10-3, at Citizens Bank Park and clinch National League Eastern Division title with four games left for third straight year and eighth overall.

Phillies Insider
This blog will swing into the off-season pattern of twice a week, Tuesdays (starting tomorrow) and Thursdays. News events will bring additional posts.

Thanks for following and hopefully, not falling asleep while reading.

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