Philly Mag writer and my co-manager of team Berthing Scott in Jon Marks' Fantatic Fantasy Baseball League* Mike Bertha wrote an excellent piece on the 1993 Phillies for this month’s Philadelphia Magazine, which has Hunter Pence on the cover. It’s an oral history of the season as told by most of the members of the organization and local media members.
As you would expect, the piece includes gems like this one, about the time Tommy Greene was ordered a stripper before a game in April:
Tommy Greene: We were in Houston on April 6th. It was my birthday. I was at the ballpark early, and I’m down in the dugout, watching the Astros take batting practice. Fregosi stuck his head out of the tunnel and called me back. As I’m walking back, I’m worrying that I might be getting traded. I get to the clubhouse and everyone’s there—[team president] Bill Giles, the G.M., the whole team. There’s a chair in the middle of the room. Fregosi told me to sit down, and a clubhouse guy opened the door. In walked a … “nurse.” She did her thing—it was classy—and put on a little show. A fitting beginning to the season.
*I’m not sure if I love or hate our fantasy team. We’re like the 2010 Giants, I think: stellar pitching with a patchwork of pesky hitters whose whole might be greater than the sum of the parts. Of course, fantasy sports are math, and that real world analogy probably doesn’t work. The squad (partial list) Matt Kemp, Brian McCan, Nelson Cruz, Michael Morse, King Felix, Cole Hamels, Madison Bumgarner, Joel Hanrahan and, yes, Chase Utley as a bench guy to reek havoc on pitching in late-May, when he returns (wishful thinking).
Also in this month’s Philadelphia Magazine is an excellent peice by John Gonzalez about Hunter Pence.
“The craziest for me, I was just walking to the diner, it was a few blocks, and there’s a DHL driver going down the street, stops his car, hops out, hands me a DHL pin, shakes my hand, says, ‘You’re going to be a World Champion and thanks for coming to our city,’” Pence says, citing one example in what’s become a never-ending parade of grown men who would probably rather talk to him than to former Playboy Playmate Shannon James, whom Pence dated for a while. (The pair broke up before spring training.) “Construction workers and painters on the side of the road building stuff run over to take pictures. I was like, ‘Holy cow.’ I didn’t think anyone would recognize me. I played for maybe two games. It didn’t matter what anyone was doing, they were coming to shake my hand. It was a lot different than I’m used to.”
Of course Pence cut the baggage before heading to Clearwater, where sexy weather girls take you on lunch dates.