Monday, April 21, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Where Do Howard's Big Pieces Fit?

Almost exactly half of Ryan Howard's 297 career home runs have had a major change on the scoreboard.

Where Do Howard's Big Pieces Fit?

Ryan Howard hit a two-run home run in the top of the ninth inning on Wednesday against the Mets. (Frank Franklin II/AP)
Ryan Howard hit a two-run home run in the top of the ninth inning on Wednesday against the Mets. (Frank Franklin II/AP)

Ryan Howard's game-winning home run Wednesday night, was just the second time in his career that he hit a homer in the ninth inning or later that took the Phillies from a deficit to a lead. The first was a a two-run homer off Yhency Brazoban in the bottom of the 10th inning of a game the Phillies trailed to the Dodgers, 4-3, on July 19, 2005 at Citizens Bank Park (see photo at left).

The homer was the 148th of his 297 career homers (almost exactly half) that have either put the Phillies ahead (113) or tied the game (35).

Wednesday's clutch hit was also the third homer in history to put the Phillies ahead in a game against the Mets when they were one out away from defeat (Jose Cardenal, 1978; a Bo Diaz grand slam down 3 in 1983).

Below is a detailed look at Howard's 297 career home runs broken down by score and runs generated by the homer. The green boxes indicate HRs that put the Phils ahead, yellow boxes indicate HRs that tied the game.

 Phillies'
 Margin
   Solo 
 HRs 
   2-Run 
 HRs 
   3-Run 
 HRs 
   Grand 
 Slams 
   Total 
 HRs 
 Ahead 13      1     1 
 Ahead 9    1       1 
 Ahead 8  3   2       5 
 Ahead 7  3       1   4 
 Ahead 6    1     1   2 
 Ahead 5  2   1   3     6 
 Ahead 4  6   1   1   1   9 
 Ahead 3  8   4   3     15 
 Ahead 2  16   7   1     24 
 Ahead 1  17   15   3   1   36 
 Tied  31   36   16   2   85 
 Behind 1  26   18   4   3   51 
 Behind 2  9   4   2     15 
 Behind 3  7   6   4   1   18 
 Behind 4  2   4     1   7 
 Behind 5  3   1   1     5 
 Behind 6  2   2       4 
 Behind 7  1   1   1     3 
 Behind 8  1   3       4 
 Behind 10  1         1 
 Behind 11      1         1 
   Totals 139   107   40   11   297 
Bob Vetrone Jr.
About this blog

Boop – who goes by Bob Vetrone Jr. when he is undercover or paying bills – has been at the Daily News since 1982, after working for five years at the Philadelphia Bulletin up to its closing. Along with helping to build the sports scoreboards most nights, he has had great input into the papers’ special sports pullouts – March Madness, Broad Street Run, Record Breakers, Greatest Moments – as well as its day-to-day, award-winning event coverage.

A 1980 graduate of North Catholic, he took some evening college courses. Those lasted right up until the first conflict with a Big 5 doubleheader.

His favorite books growing up were the NBA Guide and the Baseball Encyclopedia, which was, for all intents and purposes, the Internet before there was an Internet.

He has been immersed in sports statistics since the early 70s, when his father (long-time sports writer, broadcaster and the Daily News’ Buck The Bartender), would take him into the Bulletin newsroom overnight in the summer and let him update the Phillies statistics in a little, black spiral notebook. But things have changed tremendously in the decades since … He now uses a big, black spiral notebook.

To listen to Boop on 94WIP, click here.

Reach Bob at vetronb@phillynews.com.

Bob Vetrone Jr.
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