Philadelphia Phans: The Most Passionate People in the World

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Philadelphia Phans: The Most Passionate People in the World

This is a response to the latest Philly-bashing article written by ESPN's Jim Caple, titled, "Phillies fans, show us some brotherly love!" 

Caple basically says to Philly fans, like myself, to get over the win. Stop celebrating. Don't whine about how long you had to wait for the Phillies to win. It was only 28 years. Lots of baseball teams have to wait 28 years. Here's my response to this:

You have got to be freaking kidding me, Caple. Unbelievable. I have never been so angry at a writer after reading an article. The city of Philadelphia has absolutely worshipped all four of its sports fans over the last 25 years, despite zero championships. We finally win one, and you want to tell us how to celebrate?

This city has been starved for a championship. We have poured our sweat, tears, and soul into our teams. Forgive us if we decide to celebrate—within the boundaries of our own city—after a thrilling championship that we deserved by winning as the underdogs.

And what is with your scenario? What team would say, "Hey, we've won two in a row, so let's allow them to have this one." Absolutely not. That's the beauty of sports. To quote Herman Edwards, "You play to win the game." And when you don't win, you get pissed off and angry. That's how it works.

You think Rays fans are saying, "Ah, we'll get them next year. Hats off to them." No way. They're angry that they couldn't win it, just like we would be.

I don't care if we had won 18 consecutive championships. We want that 19th one like there's no tomorrow. You want to know why? Because we care about our teams. We are passionate, dedicated, and obsessed fans. We live and die with our teams, so forgive us for celebrating the first title we've had in what seems like an eternity.

This championship is not just about the 28 years since the Phillies have won it all. This championship is for the whole city. For every fan who has ever watched McNabb's fourth quarter performance in the Super Bowl, for every fan who got fed up with Iverson's me-first attitude, for every fan who had to watch Lindros lying on the ground with a concussion. This championship is for the whole city.

You mention that we should keep this celebration from going national? WHY? Why should we? We won a World Series in front of the entire nation by proving ourselves as the best baseball team in the entire country. Why can't we celebrate?

I know I did. I hugged complete strangers at the stadium after Game Five. I high-fived hundreds of people. I yelled my lungs out to support my team. I'm not alone. There are a few million of us that care about our city.

I like how you credit the White Sox fans for quietly celebrating their team's World Series in 2005, the first in 88 seasons. Let's not forget that Sox fans had the Bulls, who won six championships in the '90s. Even the Bears in '85, had won more recently than any Philly team.

In Philly, we had nothing. No titles, period. For 25 years. It wasn't just baseball. It was every sport. Pardon us for getting excited, Caple.

And I understand you picked the Rays in a sweep. I don't really want to criticize you for that. You're entitled to your prediction, just like the rest of us. I just can't help wondering if you were lashing out when you wrote this article. It sure seems like you were.

I'm not quite sure why ESPN and much of the baseball world seems to hate the Phillies. Joe Buck made it abundantly clear during the World Series that he was rooting for the Rays. And you sure stirred up a debate with this article, Caple.

Well, nothing is going to change. We're going to continue to celebrate like we planned. And we're going to enjoy this World Series championship for the next 100 years, so get used to it.

P.S. I lost so much respect for you as a writer, Caple.

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