Sunday, June 23, 2013

Phillies News

There are a lot of folks around these parts who are die hard Philadelphia Phillies fans.

I was thinking about this the other day as I sat on the shuttle bus taking me from the parking lot to the main hospital of the Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pennsylvania, where I had my recent heel surgery.

Out of control fan

At one of the shuttle bus stops, a tiny, bent-over, ancient, smiling man carefully stepped up into the shuttle bus, and I had to smile at his outfit.  Wearing a Phillies ball cap, a red Phillies t-shirt, and baseball patterned suspenders, he was obviously a devout Phillies fan.  Then when I saw him blow his nose into a Phillies handkerchief, I suspected he was probably wearing Phillies underwear and socks, too.

Father and son 
Even some of my friends and relatives could be labelled as phanatics.  And, I remember once being at a ball game in which the actual Phillies Phanatic mascot character came and sat down right on my mother's lap.

That happened at the Reading Phillies stadium, where prior to the game, the Philadelphia Phanatic was flown in by helicopter and landed right on the second base.  My youngest brother Chris was the helicopter pilot that night, and he assured us all after the game that the Phanatic was a true gentleman and had tipped his pilot nicely.

So, while the Philadelphia ball team (36-39) is currently on the field playing its 76th game of the season, I thought I'd share with you several random facts I have come across about game of baseball.

1.  There are 12,386,344 possible plays in every baseball game.

2.  The odds of a fan being hit by a baseball are 300,000 to 1.

3.  Rule 301c of baseball states that before every game, umpires must remove the shine from the balls by rubbing them with a mud extracted from a creek in Burlington County, New Jersey.

4.  A regulation baseball has 108 stitches.

5.  A "can of corn" is a fly ball that is easy to catch.

6.  San Francisco Manager Alvin Dark told reporters that NASA would "put a man on the moon before Gaylord Perry hits a home run."  Perry finally hit a home run 20 minutes after Neil Armstrong landed on the moon.

7.  The average life span of a major league baseball is 5-7 pitches.

8.  Forbes Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania was the first baseball field built in the United States.

9.  Before 1930, any ball that landed in fair territory and bounced over the wall was considered a home run.

10.  The first perfect game was thrown by John Lee Richmond on June 12, 1880.

11.  Cleveland pitcher Bob Feller threw the only no-hitter on an opening day on April 16, 1940.

12.  Before 1859, baseball umpires were seated in padded chairs behind home plate.

13.  There are two days of the year in which there are no professional (MLB, NBA, NHL, NFL) games:  The days before and after the MLB All-Star Game.

Although baseball is not my favorite sport, I'm always happy when the home team does well.  To me, the best part about the game is eating a good hot dog.

Play ball!


  1. My father really never left the East Coast, born and raised in Phillie, moved to the Midwest in 1962, had Sturgis Pretzels sent to him, had the Phillie News Paper sent to him, had Tastekakes sent to him, and watched every baseball and football game he could. Once cable came around he had it made. The only thing we missed and couldn't get was a good Sticky Bun. Still can't get them.
    Hope you are feeling better...Kerry

  2. I was chased by the Phanatic years ago. Good times!

  3. I forgot how intense Philly fans can be after I left there in 1995:)