While thinking about my dad on Father's Day, it's time to look inside the e-mail bag . . .
All kidding aside, what is the Phillies' deal at home? Their intensity level is far below when they are on the road. And they've only won two series - both against the Nationals!
I've had this conversation a lot lately. We're all worried about it. What makes it worse is that no one has a good answer for what's happening or how to fix it. Not you, not me, not Charlie Manuel or the players. But they better figure it out, and fast, because being under .500 at home will make it awfully hard to reach the playoffs in the long run.
Someone mentioned that to Charlie the other day - that they've won only two series at home this year, and both were against the Nationals. Charlie looked at the guy and paused and then said, "Well, at least we've won two."
I'm endlessly entertained by that man.
I recognize that Kobe is one of the best players of this era. That fact notwithstanding, we simply don't like him. Folks in this town can spot a phony a mile away. Are you old enough to remember his dad, Joe "Jelly Bean" Bryant? I recall him once sayin' he could be "just as good" as Dr. J if he could only get the same minutes.
You're right about spotting a phony. We're fantastic at that. But I'm not entirely sure that Kobe is one of those. He might be, but I think he gets a lot of flak just because that's the way it's always been. That kind of thing is contagious.
I was a freshman at La Salle U. when Jelly Bean was one of Speedy Morris' assistants. We were all convinced he would get Kobe to go to school at 20th and Olney.
I was even more gullible back then.
I have analyzed the problem the Phillies have when they play at home.
Solution: Fans wear the colors of the opposing team. They jeer the Phillies, especially when [Ryan] Howard, et al., hit home runs, or [Cole] Hamels, et al., record strikeouts. We are no longer the home fans, no longer their family, and they can play aggressively.
"Let's Go Orioles!"
- Dr. Beard
There's a lot of creative thinking going on with the fans right now. I heard someone on the radio suggest that the Phils should wear their road uniforms and sleep in hotels and operate out of the visiting dugout. I'm going to get Ford to bring that up to the Fightin's. They seem to like him, and I'm sure they'll dig the idea.
As for sitting in the stands and wearing the opposing team's colors while booing/jeering the Phils, you're on your own. I've spent a lot of time and money on my teeth. I'd hate to lose them now.
We can never let Scott Rolen off the hook. He burned every bridge he had here when he left for "baseball heaven" in St. Louis. We wear our hearts on our sleeves and he spit in our faces with his arrogant behavior while playing here.
I understand. I do. I was ticked at Rolen back then, too. But when is it time to just let it go and move on? There are better things to get worked up about. To wit: My local Acme stocks water and other essentials, but it's forever out of peanut butter Kandy Kakes. How am I supposed to survive? Without the proper Tastykake rations, Center City might as well be the Alaskan wilderness.
Is it just me or did HBO make a huge mistake by taking down the "Overtime" portion of the Artie Lange/Joe Buck exchange? Buck is getting a huge amount of free publicity for his show. As a big Howard Stern/Artie Lange fan, I guess I don't understand why Buck booked Artie if he didn't want exactly what he got from him (which, by the way, saved Joe's show - it couldn't have been more boring). It would be like if he booked Randy Moss to moon him and then complained to everyone how inappropriate it was.
Generally, shows will have bookers, so I'm guessing it wasn't Buck's idea. But you're right: Whichever HBO employee made the decision to have Lange on as a guest should have known what he would do. There's a long body of work there to go by.
And I don't agree with the decision to take down the "Overtime" segment. The damage was already done. People saw it, and they talked about it, and you can't change that. Shy of pulling some Orwellian trick and erasing everyone's memories, HBO can't make people forget what happened.
Liked the Moss comment. Very clever.
While it wasn't exactly Ali vs. Frazier, the Artie Lange-Joe Buck exchange made for some interesting television.
Artie, bumaye! Artie, bumaye!