Four-for-Four: The ‘Wing Bowl’ Edition

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Less than 24 hours after having his name attached to the vacant color-commentary job for the Phillies, Matt Stairs was re-assuming his role of ‘Athlete Who Achieved Lifelong Favorite Status With One Play‘.

‘Canadian Bacon’ has parlayed his 8th inning, go-ahead home run against the Dodgers in the 2008 NLCS into bottomless drinks and countless free meals at any establishment in the city. Much like Bernie Parent, who achieved success over a career in Philadelphia, Stairs has combined his on the field performance, albeit abbreviated, and personable attitude to further endear himself to the Phillies fanbase.

Stairs, who looks as far from a professional athlete as any single person could look, was also in attendance at Friday’s Wing Bowl festivities. Draped in an unbuttoned Phillies jersey, Stairs fell in line quite nicely with some of the vagrants at the event. Much like his one swing against the Dodgers that essentially propelled the Phillies to a World Series, it took little more than an instant for Stairs to reinforce the undying love for him in the city.

Never forget 2008…Jonathan Broxton hasn’t.


In past entries, I’ve discussed some of the promising prospects responsible for re-building the barren Phillies farm system. The minor league system was rarely discussed when the team was winning five straight division titles. Now that the Phillies are struggling, the focus has shifted on the organization’s dried up crop of players waiting in the wings.

Although they are not ready to turn over their entire roster, there appears to be hope on the way for the Phillies. In his annual Top 100 prospects list,’s Keith Law included three players from the Phillies Organization.

None of Maikel Franco, Jesse Biddle, or J.P. Crawford are currently being tabbed as potential franchise-saving prospects for Philadelphia. Still, for all the time where Domonic Brown was the only prospect worth mentioning, it is refreshing to have some of the developmental players in the Minor Leagues catching the eyes of national pundits.

The Phillies will have another high pick (7th overall) in the 2014 MLB Draft. In addition to having a top payroll in the league, the Phillies must improve their ability to develop the talent that can replenish the aged core of Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Jimmy Rollins, and Cole Hamels. Recent history has indicated that, even with contracts getting bigger than ever, home-grown talent is the way to win while supplementing with free agents.


After 14 MLB seasons, undoubtedly the most memorable being the 126 games in Philadelphia for part of last season, 3B Michael Young decided to retire. Most of me wishes that Young had never been acquired by the Phillies prior to the 2013 season. He was always a personal favorite that I was never able to watch enough to discover some of the deficiencies that made him dispensable by the Rangers.

The career .300 (or close to it) batter was still probably the best hitter in the Phillies lineup for the fraction of the season that Young played in Philadelphia. That being said, watching Young play third base was painful more often than not. I hope Young eventually gets strong consideration for the Hall of Fame, in 2019. That being said, if they unearth too many plays like this, his 2006 AL All-Star Game MVP will have to suffice as far as long-standing honors.

Philadelphia, forever.