by Ron on September 24 at 7:53AM

It simply amazes me that a professional athlete would let himself go like this, or that a professional baseball team would let him.

Antonio Alfonseca is no spring chicken. On the Phillies website he is listed as 35 and has been at the major league level since 1997 when the Marlins brought him up. He had a big year in 2000 saving 45 games and earning the Rolids Relief Man Award.

But if you look at his ERA over the past two years, it's rising faster than the Eagles injury list. Last year with Texas he pitched just 16  innings, gave up 23 hits and his ERA balooned to 5.63. 

It seems like he's run out of gas. I wonder why? Yesterday in a crucial game in the sixth he gave the lead away, then Kane Davis comes in and gives up two more and the Phillies end up losing the game to Washington, 5-3.

I listened to the 8th and 9th innings yesterday sitting in my truck while my wife shopped in BJs. "Are you sure you dont' want to shop, dear?" No you go ahead, I'll sit here and listen to the Phillies game. But see if you can find out where those little Hummels come from, will ya?

I am really impressed with the Phillies radio broadcaster Scott Franzke. He does a great job setting up the game for you when all you can see is the entrance to BJs. This guy is really good. I hope the Phillies keep him for a while. 

I'm not second guessing Charlie Manuel on his use of starter Cole Hamels or handing the ball to Afonseca or Davis. I do question the team as to why they let one of their athletes get out of shape like this. Tonight is an off night for the Fightins' before they begin a six game schedule at home, three against Atlanta and three against Washingon to end the season.

But Skip, how about we leave Alfonseca and Davis in the bullpen broom closet? 

Box Seats

Not that I'm on the same intelligence level with famed and fabled Coach Joe Paterno of the Happy Valley Nitany Lions, but I wonder if the team hadn't played two weaklings along with a poor Notre Dame team, they might have fared better against Michigan?

Speaking of Notre Dame, the good Fathers couldn't ge rid of Tyrone Willingham fast enough and hired the pro coach Charlie Weiss. I wonder if they are second guessing themselves after ND's 0-4 start. That start could go to 0-8 with the next four games the Irish have against Purdue, UCLA, Boston College, and USC, before they get some relief agaisnt Navy on November 3rd.

Willingham's 21-15 record at ND is looking pretty good right now.  His Washington Dawgs however got beat by Ohio State and then UCLA on Saturday and are 2-2. They face USC next week. Perhaps the Huskie's AD should have scheduled Florida International, Buffalo and Temple this year. Maybe he/she should attend that athletic scheduling conference next week at the Nittany Lion Inn. You know, the one that guarantees that each participant's school will land a bowl game.

The Golden Boys of North Broad Street looked good on offense but horrible on defense, losing 48-35 to Bowling Green. Turnovers killed them. But that Owl quarterback Adam DiMichele is something else. You've got to watch Temple just to see this kid play.

It was impressive the way the Owls came back at the end of the first half to tie the score. 

Temple 'could've-should've' won over Buffalo and BG, but it is what it is. Next Saturday the Owls visit Army at West Point, NY.

The Black Knights are 1-3 with their lone win coming over Rhode Island and look beatable if Coach Golden can tighen up that Owl defense. The game is being carried by ESPNU at Noon.

Mechanicsburg High School dropped to 2-2 after losing to Middletown in its first Mid-Penn Keystone conference game. The 'Cats defense looked sensational again holding a tough Middletown squad to two scores. The Wildcats take on the Lower Dalphin Falcons at 7 next Friday evening at home. The Falcons' high school is located in Hummelstown, Pennsylvania, just a stones throw up 322 from Hershey.

The question that I was asked recently, 'do the Hummel figurines come from Hummelstown?' You know, those expensive little collectibiles? It is known that the Hummels (Mr. and Mrs. Hummel, not the figurines) from Germany settled the town, but did they bring those little statues with them? And, get this: Newt Gingrich once lived in Hummelstown. Impressed yet? 

If that's true, how come there's no hummel of Gingrich? 

The Golden boys were robbed last week of a Win. That play should have been ruled a TD in the last minute by instant replay.

Do you think Al Golden is next in line to take over Penn State when Joe Paterno finally goes off into the sunset?

My spouse, my father and I are all Temple Owls. Golden gives us the most hope we've had for the football program in 30 years. I can see him putting this team on the map in four years.

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