Archive: December, 2008
Mele Kalikimaka is the thing to say on a bright Hawian Christmas Day ...
It must have been a pretty good Christmas for Shane Victorino, although I imagine it was a pretty good Christmas for everybody who played a role in helping the Phillies win the World Series. Fortunately for us, Jim Salisbury had a chance to visit with Victorino earlier this month during the winter meetings in Las Vegas. I'm guessing Salisbury pushed to meet Victorino at the In-N-Out Burger, although I could be mistaken.
"The parade was incredible," Victorino said. "I remember toward the end of Broad Street looking back and seeing the flood of people following us to the stadium. People were everywhere. I still don't know how the trucks got through. It seemed like there were two or three generations of people there. Old men were doing the sign of the cross, saying, 'Thank you, thank you.' People had tears in their eyes. I was like, 'Did we really do this for the city? Did we really create this feeling?' It's such a well-deserving place. I'm happy we could do it. And I'm happy I could be a part of the team that brought that amount of joy to that many people. It will stay with me forever."
Merry Christmas, everybody!
I'm guessing most people who check out this blog regularly received some sort of Phillies merchandise for the holidays.
Phil Sheridan writes in today's paper that Christmas is a day to appreciate the gifts you've been given or wallow in misery over those that didn't come. He would like Philly fans to appreciate the Phillies championship a little more before 2009. Sounds like a good idea to me.
Blaine Neal grew up a Phillies fan in South Jersey, where he was a star at Bishop Eustace Prep. He now has a chance to play in the Phillies' organization.
Phil Anastasia caught up with Neal, who signed a minor-league contract with the Phillies and is a non-roster invitee to camp this spring. Like Philadelphia native and non-roster invitee Mike Koplove, Neal is expected to open the season in triple-A Lehigh Valley as a relief pitcher. But if he has a good spring and pitches well for the IronPigs he could see time with the Phillies in 2009.
"It's a good situation for me in a lot of ways," said Neal, who has pitched in the big leagues with Florida, San Diego, Boston and Colorado.
Ryan Howard informed Team USA manager Davey Johnson that he won't compete in the World Baseball Classic this spring.
"He feels like he needs to spend his time in the spring getting ready for the season so he gets off to a better start," Johnson said.
Jimmy Rollins will play for Team USA. Cole Hamels and Brad Lidge also declined invitations.
Well, that's no fun.
New York Mets general manager Omar Minaya had a chance to tell the whole world the Mets are better than the Phillies, but he didn't fan the flames.
"We're not better than them, no," Minaya said. "Right now, they're world champions."
Phillies press release:
Phillies press release:
It is expected to be their last "major" announcement before spring training in February. If you want to know how your 2009 Phillies will look, take a look at today's roster:
Catchers: Chris Coste, Ronny Paulino and Carlos Ruiz.
Infielders: Eric Bruntlett, Greg Dobbs, Pedro Feliz, Ryan Howard, Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley.
Outfielders: Raul Ibanez, Geoff Jenkins, Matt Stairs, Shane Victorino and Jayson Werth.
Rotation: Joe Blanton, Cole Hamels, Jamie Moyer and Brett Myers. Drew Carpenter, Carlos Carrasco, J.A. Happ, Kyle Kendrick and Chan Ho Park are expected to be candidates for the rotation's fifth spot.
Bullpen: Clay Condrey, Chad Durbin, Scott Eyre, Brad Lidge, Ryan Madson, Park and J.C. Romero.
Between today and spring training the Phillies are expected to make Park's signing official. (He is scheduled to take his physical next month.) They also could try to add a righthanded bat to the bench because the Phillies currently have three lefthanded ones: Dobbs, Jenkins and Stairs. If the Phillies added a righthanded bat, they could move Jenkins or Stairs to help make it happen. Other than that, I think the Phillies' off-season business is mostly finished. Of course, something could pop up, but I don't see the Phillies making any major changes right now.
The Phillies introduced Raul Ibanez this afternoon at Citizens Bank Park.
Here is some of what he said:
On being 36 years old and being able to maintain his productivity throughout the length of his contract: "I love hearing it. It's one of the things I enjoy because I know that I can continue to be productive. I know this. The good Lord has blessed me with ability. He's blessed me with what I believe to be an incredible work ethic, and an incredible drive to attempt to succeed no matter what. So I think I can continue doing this for a while. As a man I couldn't have come here unless I was able to do that."