And just like that it’s over. The Phils lose, life sucks again. Though, as I sit here all busted up about the loss to San Fran and subsequent elimination, I am filled not with anger, but with bittersweet pride. I cannot look back on this series, or season for that matter, with a sour puss. And yes, I’ve tried.
Sure they pretty much handed the Giants that series and couldn’t do dick with runners in scoring position. Why didn’t Howard just swing? Why didn’t Mike Sweeney get the bat instead of Gload in Game 6? What was up with Utley, was he secretly injured? So many questions and so many dreams flushed down the toilet, but I’m not here to piss and moan about it. Of course I’d like to light AT&T park on fire, piss on the ciders and then shit in Pat Burrell’s steroids, but that’s just not in the cards. A season of dramatic highs and devastating lows is in our rearview and all I can do is swell.
Who among you could’ve predicted that our boys would’ve taken us into late October nights back in dimal May and June? Not one of us could’ve hoped to be sullenly reading this stupid column right now after watching a weary Jamie Moyer get teed-off on for nine runs in the first two innings of inter-league play at Fenway or Jayson Werth go 104 at-bats without a home run.
None of us could’ve expected a National League Division Series Champs T-shirt to be covering our fat bodies after watching Ross Gload, Wilson Valdez, Juan Castro and Greg Dobbs (well, maybe not) put more men across the plate than our trusties for most of the early summer. When we got shut out for an entire series in Flushing against the worthless Mets did any of you think we’d be punching a hole in our walls over an NLCS defeat?
Consolation is the weakest of prizes but there are a few that can comfort us in this hour of defeat. The Braves—our closest divisional rival ability-wise—bit the dust in a most disgraceful manner as they wished fond farewell to their longtime skipper, Bobby Cox.
Look at the sorry Mets. A billion games back and a billion sad sacks wear those colors. At the season’s end they’re without a manager, general manager and dignity.
Out of 162 games we owned 97 of them in a year that saw our top stud, Roy Halladay, pitch two no-hitters. We watched Chase Utley call Jonathan Sanchez a pussy on national television and witnessed a journeyman by the name of Wilson “The Goat” Valdez win the hearts and rotten minds of us all as he played manly substitute for half our beat up infield.
We got to witness Roy Oswalt play left-fucking-field in lieu of Rual Ibanez who was taking over for Howard at first after the Big Guy was ejected for damn near eating the third base umpire’s face off in a 16-inning slog against the Astros.
We saw Shane Victorino stick a grand slam up the ass of Johan Santana, and Carlos Ruiz pretty much demoralize Jonathan Broxton every chance he could, batting .1000 off the big horse and almost single-handedly having him demoted from the Dodgers’ closer role.
We can’t forget the aged heroics of Jamie Moyer, who for the first half of the season seemed to be our most reliable starter. At 47, he became the oldest pitcher in the history of the game to toss a shutout back in May against the Braves. Yeah, sure he also broke Robin Roberts record by giving up his 506th career home run, but that’s an indication of longevity, not poor skill.
Really, anyone pissing up a stink about the shit they’ve gone through this summer might as well move to England and follow that other game that’s like baseball, except you wear skirts and have tea breaks.
No one in their right mind can deny that the Phillies are a team to be reckoned with. My whole childhood was spent feeling like I was part of the losers’ class, like my team was a joke. But now we’ve got a team with the balls to dominate the fucking weak. As a city we are sitting pretty, even as we lick our wounds.
I’d like to thank our boys for the ride. Sadly some of you won’t be back next year. Jayson Werth will most likely be embarrassing that fraud Nick Swisher for the big-bucks in New York, and Mike Sweeney will most likely find a new home on a new team that needs man-hugs. You will be missed. The rest of you get your beauty sleep and have your shit together for Clearwater. Good show, men. Good show.
Savage Love: Sondheim is solace