It was a cold, frigid day at Citizens Bank Park, but there were over 44,000 warm hearts with soaked eyes. Today at Citizens Bank was the culmination of the World Series championship that the Phillies won last October—the champs got their rings.
The most beautiful ring that a designer has ever created was awarded to the Philadelphia Phillies organization.
The Phillies have been a team on their heels for the first two games, losing their first two games without showing an ounce of life. But, it took 25 innings for the Phillies offense to come alive, and boy did it ever.
Raul Ibanez, the newcomer, led all Phillies hitters going 2-3 with three RBI, including a two-run homer to tie the game in the second.
A round table of Braves pitchers walked four Phillies with the bases loaded during an eight-run seventh inning. It sparked the Phils dramatic comeback from being down 10-3, to entering the eighth up 11-10.
Phillies starting pitcher Joe Blanton got tagged in his first start of the season while surrendering seven runs on nine hits in three innings.
Thanks to a stellar relief performance and the most potent offense in baseball—closed down by Brad Lidge's 44th straight save—Blanton still has yet to lose in a Phillies uniform.
It was a magical day that began wonderful, and then all of sudden seemed to be a day doomed by another bad loss which would have turned into a three-game sweep to open the 2009 season.
The Phillies showed us why we fell in love with them in the first place. They showed heart, resilience, and a never-say-die approach. They provided Phillies fans with a day that most will never forget.
This day was special for me on a personal note. Last October, when the Phillies won their first title since 1980, it was the first championship in my lifetime. I'm actually writing a book about my experience following the Phillies for the entire roller coaster ride that they provided me with up until Brad Lidge's final pitch.
Over 100 diamonds later, 103 to be exact, my eyes were still getting slippery as I realized that we really did win a World Championship. Hopefully now, I dont have to wait another 22 years to see another.
It was a great scene to see Pat Burrell come back and get his ring. Burrell had to leave right away so he could make his game against the Red Sox. Others such as Geoff Jenkins, and (cough) Adam Eaton attended to collect their rings.
Cole Hamels, the World Series and NLCS MVP, will pitch for the first time of the year Friday when the Phils travel to Colorado to play the Rockies.