For Phillies, It’s Deja Vu All Over Again

October 22, 2009 by  
Filed under Fan News

In the end, it was a lot like 2008, when the Phillies beat the Dodgers in five games.

Once again, Dodgers closer Jonathan Broxton stared down Matt Stairs in Game Four and blinked. He walked Stairs on four pitches.

Broxton then hit Carlos Ruiz with a pitch, got the second out, then on a 1-1 fastball, let Jimmy Rollins take out the heart of this Dodgers’ team and give the Phillies an improbable 5-4 victory and a commanding 3-1 series lead.

The Dodgers were two pitches away from a 2-2 series tie, before Rollins’ walk off double. Same series deficit, same result for the Dodgers. Two years in a row.

On the deciding Game Five in Philadelphia on Wednesday, the Dodgers’ Andre Ethier woke up from his series long slump and hit a solo home run off Phillies’ starter Cole Hamels, who by the way has looked quite ordinary. The Dodgers took an early 1-0 lead.

With one man on in the bottom of the first, Dodgers’ pitcher Vicente Padilla pitched around slugger Ryan Howard. It was apparent that Dodgers’ manager Joe Torre, like he did with Albert Pujols in the NLDS, was not going to let Howard beat him with the series on the line.

That’s when Jason Werth stepped up to take the role of the Phillies’ major run producer. On a 3-2 pitch from Padilla, he smacked a three-run home run to give the Phillies a 3-1 lead.

Werth added a long center field solo shot to give the right fielder four RBI on the night. Pedro Feliz and Shane Victorino added home runs. Neither Howard nor Utley had any RBI and this team still scored 10 runs on eight hits.


Ryan Howard, shown above, was named the NLCS MVP. He had a .333 average in the Championship series with two home runs and eight RBI. In the playoffs overall, he is hitting .355 with two home runs and 14 RBI.

So now the Phillies await the winner of the YankeesAngels series. They will not play for a week and if the World Series goes seven games, baseball will be over Nov. 5.

The opponent will likely be the Yankees, and they are not called the Bronx Bomber for nothing.

Alex Rodriguez has had RBI in eight straight playoff games. Along with Derek Jeter and Mark Teixeira, the Yankees have a potent offense. Add to that a multi-million dollar rotation, led by C.C. Sabathia and all World closer Mariano Rivera.

They can score at will any time, any instance, and with amazing production in a short period of time. While the Phillies led the National League with 43 come-from-behind wins, the Yankees led all of baseball with 50 come-from-behind wins.

(Grasshopper, to become a man, you must first grab this pebble from my hand).

The Angels, who many consider a roadblock to the Yankees, have a balanced offense, led by Vladimir Guerrero, Erick Aybar, and Maicer Izturis.

Yankees fans who I have approached wearing my Phillies gear look at me like I am crazy when I say I want a Phillies-Yankees World Series. They have a blank look on their face and must think “The Phillies are the minor leagues. We have 103 wins.”

The Angels fans would respect the Phillies more.

The Yankees and Phillies are similar type teams. Their histories are not the same, however.

The Phillies look for their third World Championship and to become the first National League team to win back-to-back World Series titles since the Reds did in 1975-76.

The Yankees have 26 World Series Championships. They last won in 2000, their third straight World Championship.

They are the standard in baseball, to say the least.

But to be considered the best, you have to beat the best.

Bring it, I say.

The Phillies await their opponent in the 2009 World Series.



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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

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