Results tagged ‘ Reading Phillies ’

Trophy Time and an Elbow Update

I Saw The Trophy!

WStrophy.jpgFinally, one of the stops of the Phillies World Series Trophy Tour was nearby and at an opportune time. On Monday, the Trophy made a visit to the 422 Sportsplex, an indoor sports facility about a 15-minute drive from my house. The public viewing was scheduled from 5:00 to 6:30 pm. Thankfully, the kids didn’t have much homework that night, and I was able to bribe them into it by promising dinner at Chick-fil-a afterwards.

I warned them that we might have to wait in line for a while, but it turned out not to be too bad. We got there a few minutes before 5:00, and as soon as the picture-taking commenced, the line moved fairly quickly.

Of course, my children can never be in each others’ company for more than a few minutes before they start poking, pushing, and picking at each other. My daughter then announced that she would not be in the same picture as her brother.

Since an official-looking person had already come through the line handing out numbered tickets to each group, and there would supposedly be only one photo per ticket, I told her she had no choice. I didn’t want to get to the front of the line, and then hold things up by requesting each kid get their own picture.

Her: “I don’t care, I don’t want to be in the same picture.”

Me: “Well, you are going to be.”

Her: “Then I’m not getting my picture taken.”

Me: “You can each stand on opposite sides, that way the trophy will be between you.”

I began to entertain hopes that this wasn’t the real trophy, and only a stunt double. Horrible visions of my offspring knocking the thing over and breaking it flashed through my mind. How would I explain that to my husband?

Fortunately none of that transpired and by the time it was our turn they were on speaking terms again. Here we are with the Trophy:


I realized afterward that even though I had been standing right next to it, and had actually had my hand resting on the back of the stand (the red velvet part, not the actual Trophy), that I never really got a good look at it! Well, from afar, but not up close and personal. Your time with the trophy is limited, since they obviously want as many fans as possible to get a photo op. But at least I have proof I was there!

The Rebuilding of Scott Mathieson

Scott Mathieson was at one time a top pitching prospect in the Phillies organization. Here he is in 2005 pitching for the single-A Clearwater Threshers:


and the following year pitching for the double-A Reading Phillies:


He also pitched for Team Canada in the 2006 World Baseball Classic, and made his major-league debut later that season.

Since then, he has had not one, but two Tommy John surgeries.

He is in Clearwater this spring, attempting to make a comeback. According to this story on the Phillies website, although he initially came through the minors as a starter, he would most likely find a home in the bullpen if his comeback is successful.

So Scott, here’s wishing you a successful rehab, and that you find a spot this year in the Phillies’ system!

(all photos mine)

Wiener Love

Ahh, the hot dog, linked with baseball for what seems like, well, forever. If not forever, then at least 100 years or so, though the actual date of the momentous marriage of American favorites is not exactly known. Hot dogs are also referred to as frankfurters, franks, wieners, or wienies, though I personally can’t use the last two and keep a straight face, due to my son’s use of those terms to mean something else entirely.

According to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council, the hot dogs consumed at MLB ballparks during the 2008 season would round the bases 41,667 times – enough to stretch from Nationals Park in Washington, D.C. to AT&T Park in San Francisco! That’s a lot of dogs!

Babe Ruth supposedly liked hot dogs – a lot. Legend has it that the Babe gorged himself on 12 to 18 hot dogs before collapsing on a train ride in April 1925. A week later he underwent surgery for an intestinal abscess. This dried-up, partially consumed hot dog on display at the Baseball Reliquary was supposedly part of that binge.

BabeRuthHotDog.jpgWhat I’d like to know is why someone saved this? Eww! And where has it been for the all the intervening years? Somebody’s attic must have really reeked!

In all likelihood, the vast majority of hot dogs consumed at baseball games are purchased at concession stands, or from the vendor if you don’t want to get out of your seat. But why have your hot dog just handed to you, when it can come flying through the air instead!

At Reading Phillies games, the Crazy Hot Dog Vendor will fling your hot dog with all his might. Unfortunately there are occasional delivery “malfunctions”, as seen here:

IMG_3498.jpgI’ve circled the errant hot dog. Presumably some “lucky” fan only got a bun. The Crazy Hot Dog Vendor is actually pretty popular – so much so that he even had his own bobble head given away at a game.


But sometimes the dogs need to travel farther. In Salem, VA, the Avalanche mascot Muggsy will fire them into the stands with this nifty contraption:

IMG_0890.jpgThe vast reaches of a major league stadium require something even more powerful. Something like this howitzer of hot dog delivery systems, employed by the Phillie Phanatic:

hotdog0001.jpgThe main problem tends to be that frequently, bits of hot dog, bun, and wrapper rain down on the fans in the rows in between the launcher and the intended target. Oh well, I guess the old-fashioned way is best after all. So no matter how your hot dog is delivered to you this season, enjoy! And don’t think too much about what’s actually in it.

(sources: Babe Ruth hot dog from; hot dog statistics from; other photos mine)

Quiz Answers

As promised, here are the answers to yesterday’s quiz.

1) Simon and Garfunkel. The line is from the song “Mrs. Robinson”, featured in the movie “The Graduate”.

2) Centerfield, from the song of the same name.

3) Bruce Springsteen, from the song “Glory Days”.

4) Phil “The Scooter” Rizzuto, in the song “Paradise by the Dashboard Light”.

5) Manny Ramirez. The song is called “Moonshot Manny”.

6) “Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now”

7) Sister Sledge

8) Bay Sluggas, Inc.

9) Bernie Williams

Extra Innings:

b) Black Train Jack, on the album “No Reward”. I saw this CD and was tempted to buy it simply because I really like that photo, and I was intrigued by their use of it. But I didn’t. So I have no idea what their music even sounds like.

The Other Brother

According to a recent piece on, the Phillies are still pursuing Nomar Garciaparra as a right-handed bat off the bench. “Cool,” I thought, “for once we can avoid having the Other Brother!”

In the past, it seems that the Phillies have had a knack for acquiring the lesser talent among baseball siblings. For example, Mike Maddux instead of Greg. Jeremy Giambi instead of Jason. Ken Brett instead of George. Frank Torre instead of Joe. Vince DiMaggio instead of either Dom or Joe. Mark Leiter (who in my mind will forever be known as Leiter Fluid for his stellar 5.67 ERA for the 1997 Phillies) instead of Al.

For it turns out that in 2007, the Phillies actually had Nomar’s younger brother Michael in their system. Here he is, playing for the AA Reading Phillies:
IMG_3514.jpgBut Michael is no longer in the Phillies farm system, having been picked up by the Orioles and subsequently the Brewers. So we will now have the opportunity to employ the greater of two baseball siblings, even though Nomar is certainly not the player he once was.

So I say let’s go get Nomar! Let’s break the long and inglorious tradition of having the “other” brother!