In a tight pitchers duel, and the lowest scoring game in Citizens Bank Park's short history, the Phils finally conquered their division nemesis with a 2-1 victory. Ricky Ledee provided the game winning homer in the 7th, after robbing the Marlins of a sure home run earlier in the game. Todd Zolecki, Dana Pennett O'Neil and Dennis Deitch have the game stories. O'Neil talks with the struggling Pat Burrell, who was benched for last night's game. Burrell said, "I haven't swung the bat real good and this is part of the deal. Sometimes it helps to take a break, slow the game down a little bit and get away from it." Jack McCaffery writes:
The Phillies had to know that once it was activated--and it has--the day-to-day Burrell meter would not soon cease its haunting clicking.... The issue will be like the summertime humidity--it's going to linger for a while, and it will neither be comfortable nor aromatic.Mike Olshin openly wonders, "what if the move that gets the Phillies over the top in the National League East this year is the one general manager Ed Wade didn't make" by sticking with a resurgent Kevin Millwood? Sam Donnellon has Ed Wade talking about some of the "market changes" as the trading deadline approaches. He quotes Ed Wade, "All of a sudden some of these teams that were close to the wild card, things happen and they slip out. And they're sort of stuck." Olshin has Wade stating the rather obvious, "I think we need to approach July 31 with the serious thought that it is an important date." Well duh.
As the fallout from "369-gate" continues, the Phillies admitted, to Howard Eskin's cackling delight, that the posted 369 sign in left-center was incorrect. Zolecki's notes column has Phillies VP of PR saying, "we went out and measured it." CBP leads the majors with 144 home runs over its walls. One pitcher says the Phillies are "going to have a tough time getting pitchers to come here in a few years." Deitch continues on this theme, and says it's going to cost the Phillies more bucks to lure free agent pitchers, as s result of the "bandbox" of their ballpark. In response to the Phillies reasoning for the original placement of the 369 marker for "asthetic reasons," Deitch chastises:
Those who have attended games regularly and don’t spend those three or more hours in a vegetative state know that excuse is outlandish, since the 369-goot sign was closer to the Bud Light ad. The panels to which Wade alluded are five-feet wide; the sign has moved at least 50 feet to the right of where it was.He also goes on to "prove" the original posted markers were wrong by invoking the Pythagorean theorem. I'm sorry, maybe it's just me, but those two words should never appear in a sports column.
Kevin Mulligan sits down with Phillies Director of Broadcasting Rory McNeil and discusses issues related to current and future broadcasts. Kevin also has nice things to say about a classy Eric Snow as he departs town. I received a marketing promotion from the Sixers this week. I don't know if it was to former season ticket holders, or to just customers who've purchased tickets to single games, but curiously, none of the materials featured Snow. Prominently featured were Allen Iverson, Willie Green, Samuel Dalembert, and Kenny Thomas. The mailing was postmarked the day Snow was traded. Just thought I'd throw that out there. Earlier in the summer, a caller to Glen Macnow on WIP had mentioned that in the marketing materials sent to current season ticket holders with their invoices, Iverson did not seem to appear anywhere, leading to speculation that he might be moved, despite Billy King's insistence that was not going to happen. This was either inaccurate, or just a coincidence, it would now appear.
John Smallwood doesn't want the Eagles' season to be a "one-game season," but he admits that it's Super Bowl or Bust this year, and that "their season will officially begin" on January 23, 2005, the date of this year's NFC Championship game (exactly 6 months from tomorrow, so let the worrying begin!). With training camp less than a week away, Les Bowen has 15 questions about the upcoming season. He also mentions that the Eagles aren't interested in bringing in Eddie George. If I'm Andy Reid, I have to at least be giving this some serious thought, especially with the question marks that seem to always surround Brian Westbrook's health. If the Eagles were to add George, would this year's Eagles represent something like the LA Lakers "All-Star" cast from last year, minus the petulant, selfish player who stands accused of rape? Just wondering.
CSN has Marlins-Phillies at 1:05.