Category: Phillies (page 1 of 403)

CBP Now Has Metal Detectors at Every Gate

After launching the metal detector program at the Right Field Gate last season, Citizens Bank Park will feature walk-through metal detectors at every gate this season. It’s all part of the league-wide program that will put them in every park this year.

The Phillies now recommend that you “allow for extra time when entering Citizens Bank Park,” as the detectors will increase the line and entry time from last year’s average of, like, 15 seconds or something. But you get to keep your belt on:

Unlike the standard procedures of the Transportation Security Administration, fans will not be required to remove shoes or belts. Those who cannot pass through a metal detector will be checked with a hand-held device.

All cell phones, cameras, keys and other large metal items will need to be removed prior to passing through the metal detectors. Guests will place these items in a screening bowl alongside each individual machine in close proximity and in clear sight. Once through the metal detector, fans can easily and quickly gather their items and proceed inside the ballpark.

It’s gonna slow you down, but at least Jonathan Papelbon will feel safe.

Kyle: I’d assume that the net time to enter, based on attendance and security, will still decrease. Seriously. But when the Phillies are good again in 10 years, this is going to be a real problem.

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John POWERS Middleton is Keeping a Running List of “Real” Phillies Fans on Twitter

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Like Santa Claus but richer, John Powers [Editor’s note: Style guide alert– POWERS] Middleton, the son of Phillies limited partner John S. Middleton, is keeping a nice list. So if you want to be on the good side of a billionaire, and maybe get some free tickets in the future, I guess?, start showing him some love.

Kyle: Love POWERS. Need more POWERS in my life.

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Sports Illustrated Predicts a 99-Loss Season for the Phillies

About a month ago, I wrote a piece asking if the Phillies could lose 100 games this year. It didn’t get published (thanks, Obama Kyle), but I am far from the only one thinking that is a possibility. One of those outliers who thinks the Phillies will not lose 100 games is Sports Illustrated. According to their 2015 MLB Preview, the Phillies will only lose 99 games. High hopes.

As SI pointed out, fans left Citizens Bank Park in droves. Specifically, season-long attendance was down by 588,551 (the worst in the league, for an average of 7,266 per game). It’s not all bad, however. SI acknowledges that the rebuild has begun, and this season could surprise us. In fact, this could end up being a good year:

On top of all this, the Phillies were a bad defensive team last year and figure to be again in 2015. A second consecutive last-place finish in the NL East—the first time that’s happened since ’96 and ’97—seems like a near certainty. The best thing their fans can hope for is that Amaro finds a way to trade away all the stars and starts loading up on young talent to infuse that barren minor league system with some players who have legitimate upside.

That is to say: The best thing their fans can hope for is that Amaro finds a way to completely change the way he works, the deals he makes, and how his brain operates.

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Shane Victorino Has to Defend Himself on the Radio After Saying the Red Sox Should Get Cole Hamels

Shane Victorino just wants to hang out with his friends, but mean Boston sports radio mongrels won’t let that sort of thing slide. The former Phillie was quoted in the Daily News, saying:

“Any time you can get a No. 1, as I told these guys – not the front office, but the players – any time you can go get a guy in my opinion who is established, who has done it [you do it]. And I understand you don’t want to give up this prospect or that prospect. You’re hoping this guy becomes a Cole Hamels. Hoping. Oh wait, that guy is there now. And even as a hitter. Why would you hope that guy becomes this hitter, when you have it right now? And I understand there’s a financial side. And there’s a bigger picture. But like I said, at the end of the day, it’s right here in front of you. Why are you hoping?

That’s why they’re called prospects. And I understand the future is important, but for an organization – and anybody, any organization, not just here [with the Red Sox] – I’m going to give up, maybe not everybody, but I’m going to give up 2-3 pieces that I think are necessary for a certain guy. Because it warrants it. This guy is established.”

Okay. So those comments actually are a bit iffy. We all know Cole Hamels has a ton of value, but it might not be in Victorino’s best interest to play GM to Ryan Lawrence and say he’d “give up 2-3 pieces that I think are necessary.” Obviously, the next step was Victorino being torn apart in the local press, but at least he defended himself. Victornio called in to 98.5 The Sports Hub and took the hosts to task for taking his quotes “out of context.”

“All I said, a question was asked of me about getting Cole Hamels. I said, ‘Hey, if you can go get Cole, I’ll be all for it.’ Nothing against everybody in this clubhouse. I said from Day 1, I’ll be fine with what we have. We can go win with what we have. But if you can add another element of a guy who’s been there, I said, why wouldn’t you? And that’s the part for me is they took it obviously as me, and the names that were attached to these (rumors), I never mentioned anybody’s name. I said, ‘If you can give up two or three prospects, could be anybody, could be a second-, third-tier guy, my whole career I’ve watched that.”

But the biggest question mark was Mookie Betts, a top prospect in the Red Sox system, who is in line to take Victorino’s centerfield spot. Victornio defended himself, saying he never used Betts’ name. ” I said two or three prospects — whoever,” Victornio said. “It could be anybody. I was never a prospect. I was part of every single trade talk every year (with Philadelphia).”

But it wouldn’t be an athlete calling out a bunch of media slappies for taking things out of context without a challenge of sorts:

“These individuals who make the situation bigger than what it needs to be have no credibility on making statements behind the mic. Come in the clubhouse. Let me ask you face-to-face. That’s the thing that frustrates me more than anything. Individuals sit behind a mic and they take a story and they make it into a big fish rather than keeping it a little fish.”

Luckily for everyone involved — except maybe the Phillies who would get a huge haul — Shane Victornio isn’t the Red Sox GM. He’s probably still a step up from the guy we got, though.

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The Phillies Are worth over $1 Billion but Operated at a Loss Last Year

This used to be a ballpark... people came to. Photo credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

This used to be a ballpark… people came to. Photo credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

When we last checked in on the Phillies’ valuation, they were the sixth most valuable MLB franchise, worth $975 million. Since then, they’ve gone both up and down. According to Forbes’ 2015 MLB valuations, the Phillies come in at number ten:

10. Philadelphia Phillies
Team value: $1.25 bil.
Revenue: $265 mil.
Operating loss: $39.0 mil.

The Phillies recently inked a 25-year television agreement with Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia that will begin with the 2016 season and is worth more than $5 billion.

The team’s overall value went up, as did the league’s. “The average baseball team is now worth $1.2 billion, 48% more than a year ago,” according to Forbes. “[That’s] the biggest year-over-year increase since we began tracking team values in 1998. A record 15 MLB teams are now worth at least $1 billion, up from five in 2014.”

Kyle: Few thoughts here:

1) These gains are INSANE, but not surprising. Sports valuations are going up and up thanks to games being one of the few things people have to watch live. We’ve probably reached peak regional broadcast rights deals, but national TV deals (and soon streaming deals?) still have some room to run, I think.

2) The Nationals are ranked ninth, ahead of the Phillies?! They were 13th last year and the Phillies were sixth. Remember that time we all laughed at Jayson Werth? Yeah, we were wrong.

3) The Phillies and, understandably, the spend-happy Dodgers were the only two teams of the top 12 to operate at a loss. In fact, the Phillies had the biggest loss, by far, of any team in the Majors:

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That TV deal will kick in soon and things will balance out. But yikes, this is what happens when you have a high payroll and declining ticket sales.

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Adam Goldberg says the Phillies Didn’t Want a Throwing Batteries Joke in The Goldbergs

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Got the Phanatic and the official Vet logo. Nice.

 

Barely a month after stopping by “The Vet” for a Ferris Bueller-esque day off, ABC’s The Goldbergs is going back tomorrow night. For the episode “The Lost Boy,” the show draws on a very specific memory for producer Adam Goldberg, according to Todd Zolecki:

“There was one particular instance where we got separated, and in the ’80s when you got separated from somebody in a big place without a cell phone, there was no way to find them. So I was telling this story [in the writers’ room] about how I went with my dad to a Phillies game and we got separated. And there was this panic you felt, because Veterans Stadium was so big and so scary. It was terrifying. It’s really an episode about Adam’s [portrayed by Sean Giambrone] transition into manhood as he learns to survive in Veterans Stadium by himself.”

But neither of the scripts for the show’s visits to “The Vet” were initially cleared by the MLB. Goldberg had a chat with the Phillies director of marketing and special projects Michael Harris, and got the scripts cleared, with one change: No throwing batteries.

Goldberg said he “very cavalierly” wrote a joke in “Barry Goldberg’s Day Off” about Barry Goldberg (Adam’s older brother, portrayed by Troy Gentile) being pelted by batteries at a Phillies game after he caught a ball.

“And here come the batteries,” the announcer said.

“That one line they were like, ‘Oh, boy. That’s a nonstarter. That’s something we never want to happen again. We don’t want to encourage it,'” Goldberg said. “When I heard that was the concern, I was like, ‘Oh, I totally get what you’re saying. We’ll remove it.’

“They had concerns about the scripts as any franchise would, be it sports or even when we try to get an ’80s movie cleared. Everyone wants their property to be portrayed in the right way, and they have concerns.”

The Phillies even sent the Phanatic over for good measure, to save Goldberg $8,000 to create a reproduction costume. The Goldbergs airs tomorrow at 8:30 p.m., and now you also know what it’ll cost to make your own Phanatic costume. [Editor’s note: Somewhere, the Always Sunny guys wonder why in the hell they had to use the cheap-looking Frenetic.]

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Good Lord, Jimmy Rollins Is a Yammering Mess

Jimmy Rollins. Superstar. Photo credit: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Jimmy Rollins. Superstar. Photo credit: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Jimmy Rollins spoke at length to the bow tie man himself, little baby Ken Rosenthal. I’m assuming both men spent the interview standing on wooden lifts in front of a life-size cutout of Kevin Hart just to make themselves feel tall. Rollins, for his part, said many things, only some of which I dislike:

Q: What do you feel like now that you no longer are in Philly?

A: Free. I feel like I’m free to be myself without someone on my shoulder. Obviously, everyone has parameters and limits. You have to play within the boundaries. But when you’re a leader, rules are a little different for you. When you’re a superstar, rules are a little different. You’re held to a higher standard, which I love. But it brings added pressure. Which I love. But if someone buds, let ’em bud. Instead of trying to keep ’em within this framework. Just let ’em be who they are at that moment.

The general area, the city [of Philadelphia] being blue-collar, it’s not conducive for a superstar. You can be good, but you’ve got to be blue-collar along the way, keep your mouth shut, just go and work. Where obviously, this is LA. It’s almost like it’s OK to be more flamboyant. You kind of appreciate that the more you’re out there. Because LA loves a star.

So in that sense, I feel free. If I want to “show out” a little bit — from the outside looking in, people might say, “You’re in Hollywood.” But no, in some places you couldn’t do that.

Q: I remember when you said the Phillies would beat the Mets (Before the 2007 season, Rollins said, “I think we’re the team to beat — finally. But, that’s only on paper.” The Phillies had finished 12 games behind the Mets the previous year.) There were only a few times you said stuff that was perceived as controversial.

A: See, that stuff I don’t see as controversial. I don’t perceive that as controversial at all. That was fun. But don’t get me wrong. That’s pressure. What did I say that was so crazy? Everyone wants to win. You ask anyone in our clubhouse. We think it’s our turn. I didn’t think that was controversial.

The knee-jerk reaction here is that you’re supposed to hate this. But you know what? Love it. Generally speaking, Jimmy’s right– we hate individuality unless it’s in the context of being absurdly working man (see: Werth comma Jayson’s hair, Phillies comma 1993). People did make too much of his team to beat comment. CSN, for years, treated it like he declared war on Iran, like it was some crazy proclamation that scared the masses, some of whom undoubtedly wanted the fight.

My issue is that Rollins speaks so openly about being a “superstar.” I think that label’s a bit much, but whatevs. There are, however, only a handful of athletes that can talk about that sort of thing without seeming douchey or overly desirous of putting themselves in that pantheon– guys like LeBron James, Derek Jeter. Rollins isn’t at that level. Speaking freely about the burden of being a “superstar” is exactly the sort of thing that prevented him from becoming fully embraced in this city. And this, too:

Q: Some people felt at times that you acted too much like a superstar. That you weren’t always on time. That sometimes, you didn’t hustle. Did you feel that? Was any of that true in your mind?

A: The superstar part, not even close. On time? When I was late, I got benched. On time, if stretch is at 4:05 and you have to be there at 3, yeah, I’m late. I’m not getting there at 3. Some people get to the clubhouse at 1, but they’re playing cards, nothing to do with baseball. That wasn’t me. If stretch is at 4:20 and I’m walking in at 4 o’clock, I’m on time. Once I get there, I’m about baseball — stretch, batting practice, my cage work. I’m not sitting around hanging out. That was never me. That wasn’t my M.O.

Hustling? Hit the ball to second base, 70 percent is what I gave. When I hit it to the left side, I can’t really see, so I usually run a little run harder, because I don’t know what’s going on. But when it’s in front of me, that’s how it was.

The struggle, of running 90 feet to first and showing up at 3 p.m. to sit around, play cards and watch film, is real.

Read the full thing here.

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Roy Halladay Claims Frumpy Lady Has Better Swing Than A-Rod

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That said, he still struck her out. Because while post-retirement Roy Halladay is fun and silly, he’s still Roy Halladay.

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