The Phillies spoiled the home openers of the Rangers and Cubs last week. Braun almost single-handily spoiled yesterday’s Citizens Bank Park opener. He became the 6th enemy player to hit 3 homers in a game and 4th to drive in 7 runs in the 11-year history of the park. Defensively in right field, he made a diving catch of a sinking liner that saved 2 runs in the 2nd inning.
He came to town with 3 singles in 20 at-bats. He had gone 98 times at-bat without a homer. Braun feasts on Phillies pitching. In 44 career games, 17 homers, 37 RBI and a .392 average. At CBP, 10 homers, 21 RBI in 20 games. Maybe we should roll the ball toward him.
Going into the game, Phillies pitchers had allowed 2 homers, fewest in the league. In their first 5 games, the Phillies played good defense, not allowing any unearned runs. Yesterday 3 errors paved the way for 3 unearned runs. The previous game, they gave up 4. 7 is an NL high.
Game 2 tonight. According to broadandpattison.com, the Phillies are 18-17 on this date, including a 7-3 decision over the visiting Mets a year ago.
Tweet of The day
Roy Halladay yesterday: From my 1st day wear’n a Phils uniform to my last, was an amazing experience!!! Enjoy the game! Best fans on earth!!
Minor League Report
Lehigh Valley lost, 7-2, to Buffalo. C Cameron Rupp, 4th HR in 4 games. In 53 games at LV last year, he hit 6 HR. 3B-1B Maikel Franco continues to struggle, 2-20. LP: Mike Nesseth (0-1). No decision: David Buchanan, 2 R, 7 H, 5 IP.
Reading scored 2 in the last of the 9th to pull out a 6-5 win over New Hampshire. Walk-off single by DH Anthony Hewitt. 1B Brock Stassi, 3-4, including a run-scoring double to tie the game in the 9th. LF Cam Perkins, 2-4; hitting .389. C Tommy Joseph, 1st HR. WP Ryan O’Sullivan (1-1). No decision, Jesse Biddle, 4 R, 6 H, 7 IP. Fightin Phils have won 3 in a row.
Clearwater scored 2 in the last of the 9th but fell short, 7-6, to Tampa, the Threshers 3rd straight loss. 2B KC Serna, 2-5, including a 2-run double in the 9th. DH Art Charles, 1st HR. 3B Freddy Galvis was Clearwater’s lead-off hitter, 1-4, a triple. LP Colin Kleven (0-2). RHP Michael Adams, 1 IP, 1 SO.
Lakewood dropped a 4-2 decision at Greensboro. DH Samuel Hiciano, 2-3. C Jose Mayorga, 2-3, 2 RBI. LP: Shane Martin (0-1).
My Top Ten
Almost 43,000 fans voted for their favorite top 10 moments in the first 10 years of Citizens Bank Park. No one asked, but here are my top 10:
Winning the World Series. That was a real no brainer.
Winning the 2007 NL East crown. First post season since 1993. Say enough?
Doc’s postseason no-hitter. Only the second one in MLB postseason history. Plus, the first ever in CBP.
Shane’s grand slam. Most dramatic grand slam in my memory bank. Brett Myers’ long at-bat set up the slam.
J-Roll’s NLCS walk-off double against the Dodgers. Revenge for the 1979 Black Friday loss to LA. Finally!
2008 WS walk-off win in game 3. Chooch’s swinging bunt has to be the shortest game-ending hit in WS history.
First game in 2004. Sitting in the press box that afternoon and thinking, “Wow, this place is beautiful.”
Thome’s 400th HR. A great moment for a great man.
Harry Kalas statue. A real icon in our history whose bronze statue is about a Ryan Howard home run from Harry’s friend, Richie Ashburn’s statue. Very fitting.
Rowand’s catch. Memorable for us, pain-full for Aaron.
No. 11 is a personal one. After 33 years of working in a window-less office at Veterans Stadium, the new office had windows! There was a world out there.
My New Book
“If These Walls Could Talk” will be available May 1. Publisher is Triumph Books. Forward by Larry Bowa.
Chapter 5: Managers, from Gene Mauch through Charlie Manuel.