Friday, September 18, 2009

You'll Always Remember Your First Time, Part 6

They say you never forget your first time. And with October right around the corner, the vivid memories of my first time witnessing a professional Philadelphia franchise win a championship are ripe in my head. Even with football underway, I find myself wandering back to that glorious month of October. It's something I want to relive again and again. In fact, that's exactly what I'm going to do, republishing my feelings during the wild ride to becoming 2008 World Fucking Champions. View part 1 here, part 2 here, part 3 here, part 4 here and part 5 here.

Today is part 6, originally published Oct. 9:

Finally, It's Thurdsay

Since Sunday ended and Thursday was declared game 1 of the NLCS, everyone in the Philadelphia area has been anticipating the first pitch, which rolls around at 8:22 tonight.

In a week that seemed like it would never end, finally, Thursday is here. It's time. And it all starts in our very own back yard.

This is no breakdown of the teams. No dissection of who has the better pitching. It's not an analysis of the managerial styles of Charlie Manuel vs. Joe Torre. No, it's none of that. This is all about doing it in the here and now.

Tonight, this Phillies team has a chance to take a step toward immortality. Jimmy Rollins said he wanted to change the atmosphere, the perception of this organization. It took him a hell of a long time, but he's done that. There have been ups and downs. But make no mistake about it, this team goes as Jimmy Rollins goes.

Lost in the shuffle of Ryan Howard's tremendous September was the fact that Rollins was getting things going at the top. He carried that over into October, and it's once again his time to lead. And it starts tonight.

It's also time for Cole Hamels, who was magnificent in his only start in the NLDS, to keep it going and establish himself not only as an ace, but THE ace of this team, of this league.

Tonight, the hopes of this city rest on your golden left arm. Get off to a good start and let the fans do the rest. I know The House That Glanville will shake like it's never shaken before. It's up to you, Cole, to show us just how ready you are to own the National League.

And Chase. Chase. What can I say? You are the man. Harry the K told me so. But man, something has been amiss with you virtually all season. Since that torrid start, you've cooled down. A lot.

It's not as if you've been bad. Quite the opposite. You just haven't been you. The Chase who bats well above .300. The Chase that makes solid contact with every swing. The Chase that sends any pitch down and in on his shins out to right. Well, now's the time to bring that Chase back. You may be hurt, but you have a chance to break out, step up and topple the team you grew up idolizing. It's time for you to earn that MVP everyone was proclaiming yours at the beginning of the season. It's time.

And Ryan, just keep on keepin on. Do your thing. Hit some bombs. And show the world what Howard being Howard is all about (although, we could do without the errors).

The time for this team to leave its legacy is now. It begins tonight. At home. Against the immortal Manny Ramirez and his revitalized Dodgers. It won't be an easy task, but I know, if this team comes out and plays to its capabilities, the October ride has eight more wins left in it.

It begins tonight. And I can't wait.

Update: The Fightins have video of Bowa giving Philly fans respect.


BallHype: hype it up!

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