by Ron on August 31 at 9:26AM


Or one to forget.

Let's give credit where credit's due. Pat Burrell's surge from a .203 batting average to a feared number three hitter, has to go along with regognition to Phillies hitting coach Milt Thompson.

Somebody helped Burrell with the outside slider and the fastball in on the fists and that someone is Thompson.


I met Milt when I attended the Phillies Dream Week several years ago and I found him to be a nice man. He's done a great job with Pat, so give credit where it's due.

After his game winning hit yesterday, Chase Utley was interviewed by Harry the K. But in my mind, the player who stood out in this dramatic win, amongst all the heroism...?

  • Utley's walk off hit
  • Ryan Howard going 3 for 5
  • Aaron Rowand's leaping catch in front of the Southwest Airlines' sign in left center
  • Clay Condrey's two scoreless innings
  • Carlos Ruiz picking off Carlos Delgado
  • Burrell's two home runs
  • Tadahito Iguchi's stolen base

...was Jason Werth fighting off Wagner for a broken bat single, then stealing second and third on two consecutive pitches, and scoring on Iguchi's single. That was huge.

When Utley won the game and Harry was calling the play, listeners could hear an excited Sarge in the background. And it added to the excitement. It reminded me of when Rich Ashburn, early in his broadcasting career, would yell "oh brother, oh brother," while the K was calling an exciting play.

In this morning's New York Times Harvey Araton questioned Willie Randolph's use of Billy  Wagner for two innings, and not going with Aaron Heilman in the eighth. However Randolph decided "to go with his strength when the situation demanded it." I wonder if that was what Charlie was thinking when Alfonseca gave up four runs in the eighth without getting an out?

The Golden Boys open their season with Navy at the Linc at 7:30. The game is being carried on FM radio 94.1, so while Denise and I are watching the Phillies-Marlins game, we'll tune in to Temple. Last season the Midshipmen spanked Temle 42-6, so tonight's game will be interesting. 

Joe Paterno opens his season with huge heavyweight Florida International tomorrow at noon at Beaver Stadium. If Penn State  wants to content in the Big Ten, it must get some solid performances from quarterback Anthony Morelli. Notre Dame takes on Georgia Tech tomorrow at South Bend. This will be Charlie Weis' first test after losing many of  his key players from last season including quarterback Brady Quinn.

I'll be saying good things about Notre Dame this year so when my niece Kaitlin gets there, she'll send Denise and me tickets. 

The latest issue of Sports Illustrated has picked the Eagles to win the NFC East. Says SI, "A rejuvenated quarterback and a retooled linebacker corps have this aging team primed for a run at the Super Bowl." Hopefully a losing preseason won't make a difference for this "aging team." SI says the Birds will be 11-5.

News which you all have been waiting for: Freddy Garcia underwent surgery yesterday to repair torn cartilage in his right shoulder. Let's see if Freddy gets another big contract, after spending his last year of a three year deal with the White Sox, with the Phillies at $10 million.

And finally, speaking of contracts, Jason Werth's one year, $850,000 deal is looking pretty good. Let's hope the Phillies can keep him.











Thanks for the tip on the Temple game, Ron!

When I was a teen, I got Milt Thompson's autograph. In his day, Milt was a great contact hitter and had a way of getting on base. He was also a patient hitter, and that is the best lesson of all he can pass onto Phillie batters.

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