If you're already at work, start coughing now. Or just "grab a coffee" and get the hell out of there. If you're not at work yet, DON'T DO IT!
For the first time in a while, you can walk up to Citizens Bank Park and get a cheap ticket for a Phillies game (1:05 p.m. -- Comcast SportsNet). It's Businessperson's Special day, and Domonic Brown is likely to hit 14 home runs. John Mayberry promised to hit a grand slam.
A little farther south, the Union host Columbus tonight (7:30 -- CSN) for their last league game before an 18-day break. And judging by the email I just got this morning, there are still tickets available.
I used to argue that there is no better place on a nice day than Citizens Bank Park. Then came PPL Park, which, on a night like this, might be as picturesque as any sports venue in America.
So, head down to CBP, preferably via public transit (for the beer, clearly). Take in the game, watch Cole Hamels dominate with incredible run support, have a few brews and maybe some Bull's BBQ for lunch.
Once the Phillies win, hop the Broad Street Line back to City Hall, wander to Market East, and catch a Wilmington-bound Regional Rail (express train at 5:04 p.m.). Get off at Chester (trust me, it's safe), and find the free Union shuttle at the station (a big coach bus).
If you drove to CBP, it's an easy ride down 95 South.
Find me in Lot A and I'll happily give you a beer. Look for a 18-month-old in a Union jersey.
Plus, once there you can say inappropriate things on the stadium scoreboard:
— Philadelphia Union (@PhilaUnion) June 5, 2013
Just do it, you know you want to. Seriously, look our your office window. Why are you still sitting there?
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Philadelphia Union (5-5-4, 19 points) vs. Columbus Crew (4-4-5, 17 points)
I couldn't watch Saturday's 1-1 draw with Toronto live, but caught most of the re-air. I'd like 89 minutes of my life back, please.
The Union looked completely lifeless against a terrible team especially considering they were up a man for most of the day. Only Jack McInerney (yawn) was able to save a point, once again.
There's some who argue the team was gassed after a game in Montreal, a mid-week date with Ocean City in the U.S. Open Cup with a nearly full-strength starting 11, and a trip back to Toronto. I don't disagree. But as someone who appreciates full dedication to the Open Cup (as opposed to the Galaxy, whose coach didn't even travel to a road game) for a team that won't be winning the league title this year, I refuse to get on John Hackworth for that decision.
Other than McInerney, I'm done trying to predict the effort/mindset of this team on a game-to-game basis. But while tonight's game might not have the glamour of the Galaxy or Red Bulls, it could not be more important for the Union. Columbus is a team you MUST beat at home. Settle for a draw, or somehow lose tonight, and watch the Crew vault ahead of you in the Eastern Conference, and watch full-fledged panic set in.
Prediction Sure to Be Way Off:
For some reason, I envision a solid Union effort tonight. McInerney scores again, and Sebastien Le Toux finds the net, as well. Zac MacMath still gives up one that he should save, though.
Union 3, Crew 1