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Ruben Amaro Meets with Phillies Beat Writers Concerning Articles in Sunday's Inquirer Now with video from meeting

Ruben Amaro Meets with Phillies Beat Writers Concerning Articles in Sunday's Inquirer Now with video from meeting

Like many of you, I came across Bob Brookover and Frank Fitzpatrick's articles in Sunday morning's Inquirer on Ryan Howard's rehab down in Clearwater and thought they might cause a stir. Turns out they did.

You can read Brookover's full piece here, but the basics are that he was twice removed from Bright House Field last week, as the Phillies are attempting to keep Howard's workouts media-free. Needless to say, Brookover wasn't happy with the treatment and the article isn't exactly "pro-organization" in its tone.

Fitzpatrick's piece, on the other hand, is a bit more problematic, as it questions the Phillies' rationale for administering a cortisone shot to Howard last September and how that decision may have contributed to the rupture of his Achilles just three weeks later.

On Sunday, Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. -- who is quoted in Brookover's piece as saying he's "uncomfortable" with having a player's rehab become "a public issue" -- addressed the team's beat writers and denied that the team had endangered Howard's health.

ESPN's Jayson Stark offers these tweets on the media's access to Howard:

As for the cortisone controversy, Amaro firmly denied that the shot and Howard's injury were related.

"I wanted to clear up some of the insinuations regarding a cortisone shot," Amaro said Sunday during Philadelphia's game against Boston [via the AP]. "The cortisone shot was treated for some (other) issue he had. It was not part of the Achilles' injury. We didn't feel it was an issue. That was resolved by the time he had his injury. One thing had nothing to do with the other."

"We're probably one of the most conservative clubs in baseball in administering treatment, and we always want to make sure we have the player's best interest."

Inqy Phils scribe Matt Gelb, an obvious colleague of Brookover and Fitzpatrick, wasn't exactly thrilled with the reaction and pointed out how the Phils could have been out in front of this story, rather than behind it:

Gelb also mentions in a separate tweet that "they," the Phillies, are more upset with the implications in the cortisone story than the access story.

He frames the dispute as the Inquirer merely attempting to report on the rehabilitation of a player who, he reminds us, is owed $125 million.

Much in that same vein, Brookover wrote in his piece:

"If you're willing to put down $20 to $40 a ticket for a ball game and you have an interest in the team, it's not unreasonable to want a firsthand progress report about the Phillies position player making the most money... We're paid to be the eyes of the fans and we have access to the places they cannot go."

This isn't the first time local beat writers have taken issue with a team's front office over access to specific players, but those matters have more involved a certain hockey team. In previous discussions on these issues, many of you have commented that you've been less concerned with the media's perceived slights and more concerned with success on the field/ice/court.

That said, if the Phillies don't have anything to hide, and I'm not saying they do, is it unreasonable to expect reports on the recovery of a star player?

Assuming the Inquirer did offer the Phillies a chance to comment on both articles, the club could have squashed some of this in advance without having to do damage control after the fact.

There's a number of issues at hand here, including some real petty stuff back and forth about the difference between media access during spring training versus rehabilitation stints in-season, but where do you stand on the Phillies controlling the coverage of an injured superstar?

Update: Courtesy CSNPhilly.com, who has it via NBC10's Howard Eskin, this cell phone video of Ruben Amaro addressing reporters at the meeting:

CSNPhilly Internship - Advertising/Sales

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CSNPhilly Internship - Advertising/Sales

Position Title: Intern
Department: Advertising/Sales
Company: Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia
# of hours / week: 10 – 20 hours

Deadline: November 20

Basic Function

This position will work closely with the Vice President of Sales in generating revenue through commercial advertisements and sponsorship sales. The intern will gain first-hand sales experience through working with Sales Assistants and AEs on pitches, sales-calls and recapping material.

Duties and Responsibilities

• Assist Account Executive on preparation of Sales Presentations
• Cultivate new account leads for local sales
• Track sponsorships in specified programs
• Assist as point of contact with sponsors on game night set up and pre-game hospitality elements.
• Assist with collection of all proof of performance materials.
• Perform Competitive Network Analysis
• Update Customer database
• Other various projects as assigned

Requirements

1. Good oral and written communication skills.
2. Knowledge of sports.
3. Ability to work non-traditional hours, weekends & holidays
4. Ability to work in a fast-paced, high-pressure environment
5. Must be 19 years of age or older
6. Must be a student in pursuit of an Associate, Bachelor, Master or Juris Doctor degree
7. Must have unrestricted authorization to work in the US
8. Must have sophomore standing or above
9. Must have a 3.0 GPA

Interested students should apply here and specify they're interested in the ad/sales internship.

About NBC internships

10 facts about Jake Elliott's walk-off field goal

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10 facts about Jake Elliott's walk-off field goal

Reuben Frank has 10 facts you may not have known about Jake Elliott’s 61-yard walk-off field goal.

1. Jake Elliott’s 61-yard game-winning field goal Sunday broke the Eagles’ franchise record of 59 yards set on Nov. 12, 1979, by Tony Franklin against the Cowboys at Texas Stadium. 

2. It was the longest walk-off field goal by an Eagles kicker by far, breaking the record of 50 yards set by David Akers on Oct. 24, 2004, in overtime in Cleveland.

3. It was the third-longest walk-off game-winner in NFL history and the longest in 10 years — since a kick Eagles fans remember well. The longest game-winner ever is Tom Dempsey’s 63-yarder as time expired on Nov. 8, 1970, that gave the Saints a 19-17 win over the Lions at Tulane Stadium in New Orleans. The only other longer game-winner was Matt Bryant’s 62-yarder in Tampa against the Eagles on Oct. 22, 2006.

4. It was the longest field goal in NFL history by a rookie. The previous record was 60 yards set by Greg Zuerlein of the Rams, who made a 60-yarder against Seattle in a 19-13 win on Sept. 30, 2012. 

5. Elliott’s kick was also the longest field goal ever against the Giants. The previous record belonged to Mason Crosby of the Packers, who made a 57-yarder in a loss to the Giants in 2013.

6. Elliott is the first kicker in NFL history to make a kick from 60 or more yards before making a kick from 50 or more yards. Elliott’s previous long field goal was a 46-yarder moments earlier. Zuerlein and Dempsey each had one 50-yarder before their 60-yarder.

7. The kickers who made the longest and fourth-longest field goals in Eagles history are both currently on the roster. Franklin’s 59-yarder is now second-longest, David Akers’ 57-yarder in 2003 against the Patriots is No. 3 and Caleb Sturgis’ 55-yarder last October in Dallas is now fourth-longest. Sturgis is currently on Injured Reserve. Elliott was signed to replace him.

8. Believe it or not, Elliott is the first kicker in Eagles history to make two field goals of 46 yards or more in a fourth quarter.

9. Elliott’s kick was not the longest attempt ever by an Eagles kicker. Alex Henery missed a 63-yarder in the Georgia Dome against the Falcons in 2011, Tony Franklin missed a 62-yarder against the Colts in 1983 and Tom Dempsey missed a 61-yarder against the Cards in 1974.

10. Finally this: Elliott, whose 46-yarder with 51 seconds left tied the game at 24, is the first kicker in 23 years to make two field goals from any distance in the final minute of a fourth quarter. On Christmas Eve at Riverfront Stadium in Cincinnati, Doug Pelfrey of the Bengals made a game-tying 22-yard field goal against the Eagles with three seconds left in the fourth quarter. Eagles fullback Brian O’Neal fumbled the ensuing kickoff and it was recovered by Adrian Hardy of the Bengals at the Eagles’ 35-yard-line. Pelfrey ran back on the field and made a 54-yarder to win the game. Eagles head coach Rich Kotite was fired the next day.