I’m not great at championship speeches, but I think something needs to be said. It’s Game 5 of the NLDS tonight, and the thought of the Phillies not advancing to the Championship Series has me worried.
The Cardinals are hot. They basically had an impeccable September to surpass the Braves in the wildcard, and now they are carrying a heavy momentum into the playoffs.
Tied 2-2, our boys will try to fend off the daunting weight that comes with having a huge target on your back. We look vulnerable. It’s easy to say we assembled the “Miami Heat” of pitchers, and now everyone can’t wait to relish in the sight of a collapse.
Tonight’s the night our bats have to carry us out of this. Ryan Howard, the most criticized of all Phillies, was almost non-existent in St. Louis. Since hitting the 3-run homerun in Game 1, he’s been 1-13. People think that’s reason to start jumping down his throat. I, however, look at that 3-run homerun.
I’m looking for the big man to pull through tonight. Say what you want, but he led our team with 33 homers and 116 RBIs. No one is even close to that. The next highest is Ibanez (which is crazy if you think about his April-May numbers) with 84. You’d be crazy to think we should get rid of Howard.
There isn’t a man I could think of better on the mound than Roy Halladay. Going against long time friend Chris Carpenter makes for an epic story. Carpenter had a lot of troubles against the Phillies last time. I doubt it will be anywhere near that degree, but I also would like to think that we have his number.
It’s do or die tonight, folks. Charlie Manuel needs to make all the right moves and push all of the right buttons.
To get you hyped, I have compiled some of the best Charlie Manual vids over his tenure in Philadelphia. GET LOUD PHILLY!!!
I couldn’t get this embedded, but it’s the angriest I’ve ever seen Charlie Manual…
Game starts at 8:05PM ET.
This post was written by Randy Neil