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A Look Back at the Home Opener

Posted by Nick "Beerman" Staskin, Tue, April 13, 2010 08:12 PM | Comments: 109
Commentary, Posts

After working my ninth straight home opener, a couple things caught my eye inside Citizens Bank Park on Monday afternoon during the Phillies win over the Washington Nationals. This isn’t really a column, just some random thoughts that popped into my head over the course of the afternoon.

When did it become cool to boo Cole Hamels?  On a team that had no pitching in 2008 he carried them to a World Series. He had a down year last year, but some of those numbers were inflated by a few awful starts. There are no making excuses for his postseason last year, but this year he has kept the team in the game both starts. Not amazing starts to say the least, but good enough to keep the Phillies in it while he works out the kinks. I really don’t want the voices of some dumb fans to get in the head of a kid with worlds of talent. Philadelphia has a knack for moving its stars, see the resumes of Scott Rolen, Curt Schilling, Allen Iverson, Charles Barkley and most recently Donovan McNabb. I’m really not prepared for the name Cole Hamels to join that list yet.

For everybody that complains about how hard it is to get tickets to games, why don’t people use them to actually watch the game? I spoke with countless fans who couldn’t tell me anything about why Rollins was hurt, who homered for the Nats, or who came in for the out after Hamels couldn’t finish the inning. Tons of fans seemed to just chill out in Ashburn Alley or the smoking stands or even worse wait in line for Crab Fries for over an hour without even glancing onto the field for the action. Considering how tough this ticket was to get it confused me. We aren’t talking about a mid-July Wednesday afternoon game against the Reds, this was the home opener.

After the terrible weather that normally comes with Phillies games in early April, how refreshing was Monday, as well as the rest of this week’s forecast? Perhaps Major League Baseball finally got it right, limiting home games on the East Coast.

Was it me or was the raising of the National League Championship flag a bit uneventful? Same goes with the National League Champions ring ceremony scheduled for Thursday afternoon. Maybe 2008 spoiled me, being in the stadium as they rose the flag minutes after winning the World Series, but this kind of felt like kissing your sister. The blue flag is cool, but I think that raising a red one that reads 2010 will make everything right again.

I don’t want the ladies to take this wrong and think that I don’t appreciate it. And I don’t want the men to think I’m trying to ruin it for the rest of them, but what is going on with the women at Citizens Bank Park? All of a sudden the stadium has the feel of a singles bar. Girls are wearing their skimpiest Chase Utley t-shirts that are cut down the cleavage to go along with the shortest of Phillies shorts that show the bottom of their butt cheeks. I’d be lying if I didn’t say I loved the scenery, but from watching these girls…and trust me, I’m watching, it sure seems like a lot of these girls are there to pick up guys rather than watch the game. What they choose to do with their ticket is on them, but seems like another case of people wasting the tickets that everyone is howling about not being able to get. I understand it only recently become cool to be a Phillies fan, and who am I to judge what these girls wear or how they act in the game, but I know I’m not the only person to notice this over the past year or so.

As far back as I can remember, I don’t remember any player bringing this kind of excitement to Philadelphia as Roy Halladay is doing right now. I don’t even think the Eagles acquisition of Terrell Owens had the city in such joyous uproar. You couldn’t even begin to count the amount of #34 jerseys and t-shirts Monday afternoon. What is Saturday going to be like when he takes the mound for the first time at The Bank?

Finally, after talking with numerous fans, everyone seems to have the same expectation: World Series or bust. A favorable first nine games, facing the two worst teams in the NL (depending who you ask), has definitely helped get the momentum rolling in the right direction. But where do the Phillies go without Jimmy Rollins? Upon writing of this column, the word was still “wait-and-see”, by Wednesday morning that could become a stint on the 15-day DL. Without one of the leaders on the team, it will be interesting to see how the Phillies respond as a team.

One week is in the books for the 2010 Philadelphia Phillies and I can’t remember a season starting the way this one has in a very long time.

Avatar of Kieran-Carobine

About Nick "Beerman" Staskin

Nick Staskin has written 36 articles on Phillies Nation.

 
 
  • Posts: 0 Adam

    Great article. I think everyone needs to pause judgment on Cole. It has been two starts and no matter what you want to say, his starts have produced two Phillies wins. I obviously would feel better about him if he gave us two stellar outings but a win is a win. It is promising that he can give you 100+ pitches this early in the season. Suspend judgment people. Give the guy a chance to prove that his talent is more akin to the 2008 Hamels and not the 2009 Hamels.

    I am very dissapointed to hear about Rollins headed to the DL. The guy has looked focused and determined since day 1. I don’t think it will hurt the team that much (I predict somewhere in the 15-10 range while he is out….that would put us at 21-11) but it is frustrating cause I feel like he was primed for a monster year. With that said, I am glad these sort of injuries are happening in April and not in mid-summer or (knock on wood) in September. I am hoping Romero, Lidge, Blanton, Rollins will all be back and super healthy by mid-May.

    In terms of the women at CBP, I have no problem with it. I am glad to see more people paying attention to this team; especially women. This team as a whole has a great personality and it is no wonder people are drawn to them. While I have no problem with the women, I have a massive problem with the bandwagon males (especially the ones that would not have been caught dead wearing Phillies red 3-4 years ago).

    Sadly this town is made up of sports fans (group A) and Eagles fans (group B…they are the ones that are I have a problem with). I don’t want to see any fat slob Eagles fans at Phillies games. Go root for that crap team across the street that is run purely like a business and knows that they can be millions of dollars under the cap because not matter what they will draw 60k a home game.

    Here are typical characteristics of pure Eagles fans that are jumping on the Phillies bandwagon: (if you are offended by any of these then you are probably a bandwagon fan)

    1. Believed the Phillies sucked prior to 2007 (clearly they have no knowledge that the Phillies narrowly missed the playoffs many times between 2001 and 2006)

    2. Pronounce Halladay: Holliday or Hollidae (Philly accent)

    3. Yell balk as loud as they can when they see the “fake to third, throw to first move” by a pitcher

    4. Think that Cole Hamels sucks

    5. Does not understand how good/valuable a guy like Placido Polanco is

    6. Can not even begin to explain to you what double-play depth means

    7. Yells E-A-G-L-E-S Eagles when the Phillies are down 5-0 in the 7th (mind you most of the time the Phillies will come back and win this game)

    8. And finally….refuse to admit that the Phillies are a better run organization in every way then the uninteresting, boring, pompous for no good reason Eagles.

     
  • Posts: 0 Mostone

    Bandwagon jumpers are all contributing to the success of the team and seeing all of Phils caps all over the place just makes me smile.

    The only thing that would make me boo Cole would be dementia wiping away the memories of 2008.

     
  • Posts: 0 Manny

    On a final note, I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a strong correlation between fans who boo Hamels and bandwagoners…

     
  • Posts: 0 Cadillac Time!!!!

    @ Adam. Nice job. That about sums it up. Those are the jerks that can’t put a sentence together. They’re invading our tailgate lots and stadiums!

     
  • Posts: 0 The Dipsy

    Top 5 most exciting Philadelphia acquisitions of the free agent era:

    1. Pete Rose
    2. Julius Erving
    3. Moses Malone
    4. Eric Lindros (and I hate hockey)
    5. Roy Halladay

    The Dipsy

     
  • Posts: 0 WFC010

    I really wish people would back off Hamels, and give him some CREDIT for actively trying to IMPROVE all off-season, which I thought is what fans had wanted to see in the first place. He’s been working on new pitches, and he obviously is yet to master some of them, but at least he’s WORKING ON IT, and we should start seeing better results from them fairly soon.

    The amount of disrespect he has been getting lately really upsets me, and i’m hoping some of the fans will wake up before it’s too late, and we end up losing Cole to the Yankees or something.

     
  • Posts: 0 Evelyn

    I am totally with you on the ticket buying problems. No longer can I call up a friend an hour before the game and say we’re going–now everything must be done too far in advance

     
  • Posts: 0 johan

    HAMELS IS OVERRATED TO BEGIN WITH. HES NOT BAD BUT IN 08 HIS BEST YEAR HIS ERA WAS 3.09 WHICH IS GOOD BUT ITS NOT GODLIKE OR KING LIKE, THE REAL KING IN BASEBALL IS KING FELIX

     
  • Posts: 0 Brian Sr. of CO

    I really honestly find it hillarious that the same people who boo Moyer for taking the mound, and giving up 5 runs in 6 innings (actually all innings were scoreless, except one really big innings), yet defend Hamels for 4 runs in 5 or less innings because he was the 2008 WS MVP.

    “The What-have-you-done-for-me-Lately nonsense needs to stop,…

    Stop BOOING a Champion, you front-runnin bastards!”

    So my suggestion is either be fair about it, and NOT boo Moyer, or be quite. Thats just funny. Hamels can go out and give up 4 runs in 5 innings, and alot of people are way “but he was the 2008 WS MVP” (news flash, its 2010). Yet Moyer can go out and throw a 2 hit shutout through 6 innings (he did it last season) and people say, “but it was against a bad offense” or “if anyone else where pitching it would have been a no hitter, or a complete game. What I say is be FAIR. Either boo no one, or boo them all when they play HORRIBLE. Personally I am a HUGE Moyer fan, most of the other regulars on here now it, BUT I CAN and HAVE had harsh comments on Moyer (and other players) if they play like complete junk on a particular day. Its doesnt mean I dont like them or want them gone. Its because I have seen better from them. I will boo them when they play poorly, and I will cheer LOUDLY when they play the way we all know they can.

     
 
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