Gerry McEntee, national president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees and a Philadelphia native, chose an unusual way this afternoon to stir the political passions of his union's members and retirees -- slam Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard.
McEntee, speaking at a luncheon for union retirees at AFSCME District Council 33's headquarters, lamented Howard's decision to look at strike three in the last out of the National League Championship Series Saturday against the San Francisco Giants. Howard thought the ball was low.
McEntee, speaking to more than 200 union members in advance of the Democratic candidates for the U.S. Senate and governor, said he was happy to be visiting his home town.
"You know what would have made me even happier?," McEntee asked. "If Ryan Howard had swung at that pitch. He struck out four times and made one big error. And we just signed him to a $25 million contract. C’mon Ryan."
DC 33 President Pete Matthews, sitting next to McEntee's podium, rallied to Howard's defense, saying "He'll be alright." McEntee didn't seem reassured, replying, "He'll be alright, bull****."