The present beware, the future beware, it’s coming, it’s coming! 10,000 losses for the Phillies is almost a reality. I have a feeling I’ll treat it like every other Phillies loss I’ve experienced in my life, but people are definitely making a big deal about it. Here is an article by our old friend DMac published in this week’s Philadelphia Weekly – read it to the end for the Phillies Nation shoutout. Go Phils!
How a foul ball and an 11-year-old kid still define our feelings about Phillies management 85 years later.
Photographs by Jeff Fusco & Courtesy of Temple Urban Archives
Anyone who’s caught a ball at a Phillies game—whether at the Baker Bowl, Connie Mack Stadium, the Vet or Citizens Bank Park—can thank the Phillies, a principled judge and a brave 11-year-old boy.
There may be no better American sporting tradition than keeping a ball that’s hit into the stands. Fans keep foul and home run balls as lifetime souvenirs, treating them as cherished possessions. The crowd cheers fans making a nice catch on a foul ball. Fans dropping an easy one get a hearty boo—at least from Philadelphia fans.
Home run balls make fans instant celebrities. Andrew Morbitzer did the TV morning show circuit earlier this year when he caught Barry Bonds’ 715th homer. Todd McFarlane paid $3 million for Mark McGwire’s 70th home run ball. Bonds’ record-setting 73rd homer in 2001 caused a legal battle that went on for two years. McFarlane eventually bought that ball too. In 2004 Texas Rangers fan Matt Starr knocked over a 4-year-old attempting to get a foul ball. (After an outcry, he gave it to the kid.)
And then there’s the case of Robert Cotter.