A Phillies Sweep as Heard Through Sporadic Updates at PPL Park

A Phillies Sweep as Heard Through Sporadic Updates at PPL Park

I wasn't able to see the Phils' win over the Marlins last night to close out the sweep. The Union had a home game, so I was at PPL Park watching them fall to a superior Columbus Crew side. Fortunately, the commenter known as Swift sits a few rows in front of me, and as he has in previous "schedule conflict" games, he shouted out score updates from the Phils. 

The update that came when JC Romero was charged with two runs without retiring a batter in the seventh was a little painful. We later found out that he'd also allowed two of Roy Oswalt's runs to score, including a four-pitch walk with the bases loaded after an IBB. It was at least a relief to hear that Oswalt had improved on his first start with the team, but man did he get screwed on that one. 

In the parking lot, fans waited out the traffic and huddled around open car doors to hear extra innings. The Franzke call on Chooch's 10th inning homer while sitting in the car with the AC blasting after standing outside all night was "relief" defined. 

Another Philly sports fan tattoo after the jump.

We weren't sure what had gotten the Phils back even with the Marlins to force extras, nor what LA was talking about when he made reference to a wild ninth inning, with all three rally-killing Phillies outs coming on the basepaths, then how an umpiring mistake and a little luck kept the game alive.  

Catching the recap at home, we couldn't help but laugh at the outcome for the Marlins and cringe at the Phils' wasted efforts in the top of the ninth. The Marlins were clearly screwed by a terrible call in the ninth, and despite the Phillies having choked away a rally, it was all even heading into the tenth. Chooch, knowing full well what it takes to be a WFC, has put the team on his back lately. His double in the sixth inning plated the game's first two runs, and it was his second of the game. With three hits on the night, Ruiz is just two points shy of a .300 average. 

The Braves won too, while the Mets were inactive. Winners of four straight and 12 of their last 14 amidst a terrible battle with the DL, the Phils just two games back of first place. They're doing far better lately than the expected "hang in there, weather the storm while key players are out." It wasn't pretty last night, but sometimes it helps to win ugly and have a reminder that it doesn't always take being perfect. 

As for the Union game... The Crew looked great throughout up much of it, clearly a more cohesive side than the Union. PPL Park had a great crowd last night, 18,001, and there was a lot of energy throughout the place, not just in the River End. But it took a penalty kick by Seba Le Toux to get them on the board at all, and they had trouble marking the Crew's Steven Lenhart all night. Lenhart put two in the net. No big deal, the expansion side lost to a first place team. 

I haven't heard why, but the Union started the game shooting on the River End, whereas they usually defend that side first. Don't like. Put it back how it was, Union. 

Today's fan ink courtesy of commenter Aaron. Utley would be proud.

Best of NHL: Trocheck's last-second goal lifts Panthers past Blues

Best of NHL: Trocheck's last-second goal lifts Panthers past Blues

ST. LOUIS -- Vincent Trocheck scored with just under 5 seconds remaining to lift the Florida Panthers to a 2-1 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Monday night.

Jonathan Marchessault also scored and James Reimer stopped 26 shots to help the Panthers complete a 5-0 road trip -- their first perfect trip of at least that many games in franchise history.

Reimer has won five straight decisions and has not lost in regulation since Jan. 7 against Boston, going 6-0-1 since.

The Panthers moved into a tie with Boston for third place in the Atlantic Division, but have the edge because they have a game in hand on the Bruins.

Kyle Brodziak, playing for the second time after missing 10 games due to a broken foot, scored for the Blues and Jake Allen finished with 31 saves. St. Louis lost its second straight since winning six in a row (see full recap).

Coyotes use three-goal 1st period to beat Ducks
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Radim Vrbata capped Arizona's three-goal first period and the Coyotes held on for 3-2 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Monday night.

Christian Dvorak and Jakob Chychrun also scored for Arizona, and starting goalie Mike Smith had 27 saves before leaving about 4 1/2 minutes into the third period after a collision in the net. Marek Langhamer helped kill a power play after being pressed into action for his NHL debut and stopped six of the seven shots he faced.

The Coyotes have won four of their last six.

Langhamer gave up Ryan Getzlaf's second goal of the night with 26.8 seconds to play, but thwarted two quality shots in the final seconds.

Jonathan Bernier gave up three goals on six shots in the first period for the Ducks. John Gibson came on to start the second and stopped all 14 shots he faced (see full recap).

Joel Embiid admits to aggravating foot injury after 2014 surgery, almost quitting

Joel Embiid admits to aggravating foot injury after 2014 surgery, almost quitting

Joel Embiid trusts the Process, more so than anyone — the process of patience.

After sitting out two whole seasons because of foot injuries, Embiid learned the importance of patience the hard way.

Appearing on NBA TV's Open Court, Joel Embiid opened up about how he reaggravated the fracture in his foot that cost him the 2015-16 season.

"I didn't know how to deal with patience," Embiid said on the roundtable discussion. "I just wanted to do stuff, that's why I think I needed a second surgery, because after my first one, I just wanted to play basketball again. I just wanted to be on the court and I pushed through what I wasn't supposed to.

"At one point I thought about quitting. I just wanted to come back home and just forget everything."

Embiid goes on to discuss the Sixers' turnaround this season and his mindset during his recovery. Watch the full clip below. 

Embiid also said he models his game after Hakeem Olajuwon.