Philadelphia fans withstood a poor 2014 season as the Phillies finished in last place in the NL East with a 73-89 record. The sad part is the Phillies look to be in even worse shape this season.
Philadelphia’s general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. traded away long-time Phillies stalwart Jimmy Rollins to the Dodgers in an attempt to restock the farm system. Ryan Howard, Chase Utley and Cole Hamels still remain from the 2008 World Series team, but the front office is actively shopping the veterans in an attempt to rebuild the team.
Aging veterans like Utley and Howard do not hold much value in the trade market, but removing Howard’s enormous salary would be a major boost to the club.
On Opening Day at Citizens Bank Park, Hamels will toe the rubber and deliver the first pitch of the season for the Phillies. However, Hamels' future is uncertain as he does hold trade value at 31 years old after coming off an impressive season with a 2.46 ERA.
One Philadelphia name that is not going anywhere is Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt, as the former third-baseman will increase his television presence this season.
Phillies fans may still watch the team in their own home at their own leisure, but will people show up to Citizens Bank Park?
Filling a bad team’s stadium with even die-hard fans is a struggle, so how do you fill the seats? By offering a towering mountain of beef.
To go along with the burgers, the Phillies also announced they will be serving hard liquor and wine in the stadium this year.
Now remember, this is the fan base that threw snowballs at Santa Claus. Do they really need any help in getting more belligerent and riled up? The fans will most likely already be in bad spirits due to the team's performances, and libations can only make it worse.
The Philadelphia Phillies may not be a national storyline, but the potential to add Utley, Howard or Hamels to a contender would attract the eyes of the top teams in the league.
Being a fan of a team that may finish the season as the worst in Major League Baseball can be difficult. However, fans will likely still flood South Philadelphia to catch one of the best pitchers in baseball kick-off summer.