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The Union made the playoffs last season for the first time since 2011. Key additions at midfield, striker and center back could determine whether the Union get that elusive first postseason win this year.

With the Grateful Dead celebrating their 50th anniversary with concerts featuring all four surviving core members playing together on the same stage for the final time, Eric Fisher puts together a set list featuring Dead songs with a Philly sports theme.

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Archive for the ‘Phillies’ Category

Admiration for Halladay

Posted by Eric Fisher On November - 7 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS


That is what we have at our disposal in times of loss. And, in cases like the death of Roy Halladay at 40 years old, those words are insufficient.

Perhaps words can be found to properly describe the euphoria of Halladay’s 2010 Phillies masterpieces, the perfect game against the Marlins and the no-hitter in his first taste of the postseason, which didn’t come until the 13th year of his incredible career.

But there aren’t any words adequate for describing the tragedy of losing a man like Roy Halladay in a plane crash at 40 years old.

Halladay was much more than a great pitcher. He was, by all accounts, a tremendous human being.

Halladay earned the respect of his teammates. He earned the respect of opponents. And he earned the respect of the fans.

Chase Utley, whose work ethic is legendary, posted on Instagram about his encounter with Halladay at 5:45 a.m. on the first day of spring training. “He was finishing his breakfast but his clothes were soaking wet. I asked if it was raining when he got in. He laughed and said, ‘No, I just finished my workout.’ I knew right then – he was the real deal.”

The tributes poured in from all over baseball. And they were overflowing with admiration and respect.

The common theme was that this amazing pitcher was also a wonderful person.

In the statement released by the Phillies, they mourn “the loss of one of the most respected human beings to ever play the game.” The statement from the Blue Jays, with whom he spent the first 12 years of his career, described Halladay as “one of the franchise’s greatest and most respected players, but even better human being.”

Passo County (Fla.) Sheriff Chris Nocco, while confirming Halladay’s death, said you would never know that Halladay was a former athlete, let alone that he was a two-time Cy Young Award winner, except that he was 6-foot-6. Nocco described Halladay as a humble man of faith who was “a friend of ours (the police).”

Accolades aren’t uncommon after a person dies, but the volume and consistency of the praise for Halladay indicate that his life isn’t being viewed through rose-colored glasses. Anyone who followed Halladay’s career can attest that the same types of things were said about him while he was alive.

Fans also felt a special connection with Halladay. There was never any doubt that Halladay was giving his best effort every time he was on the mound.

In an era when pitching six innings can be considered a quality start, Halladay wanted to finish what he started. He hurled 67 complete games in 390 starts, a rate of nearly 17.2 percent. Pity the manager or pitching coach who started to head out to the mound, only to receive the determined stare from Halladay that delivered the message that he wasn’t coming out of the game.

Phillies fans will never forget Halladay. But the fans admired Halladay from afar. His teammates, managers and coaches knew him far better than fans or media members. And nobody knew Halladay like his family and friends.

Words can’t adequately describe their pain.

Just as words can’t do justice to the life of Roy Halladay and the tragedy of losing him at 40 years old.

Halladay dies in plane crash

Posted by Eric Fisher On November - 7 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Roy Halladay, who spent the final four seasons of his magnificent major league career with the Phillies, died after his single-engine plane crashed into the Gulf of Mexico, approximately 10 miles west of St. Petersburg, Fla., early Tuesday afternoon.

According to Pasco County (Fla.) Sheriff Chris Nocco, Halladay was flying an ICON A5, a two-passenger amphibious plane that he owned, when the plane crashed. Nocco said the body recovered was Halladay.

Halladay, 40, spend the first 12 seasons of his career with the Blue Jays and the final four with the Phillies. Halladay won two Cy Young Awards, one with the Blue Jays in 2003 and the other with the Phillies in 2010, his first season with the team. Halladay compiled a 21-10 record and 2.44 ERA in 2010. The highlight of his 2010 season were a perfect game on May 29 against the Blue Jays and a no-hitter on Oct. 6 against the Reds in the first playoff game of his career.

The Phillies released a statement that said, “We are numb over the very tragic news about Roy Halladay’s untimely death. There are no words to describe the sadness that the entire Phillies family is feeling over the loss of one of the most respected human beings to ever play the game.”

The respect for Halladay extended far beyond the playing field. Nocco, with other officers standing behind him as a show of respect, spoke of Halladay’s humble demeanor and, when announcing the identity of the deceased pilot, described him as “a friend of ours (the police).” Nocco revealed that Halladay had purchased a police dog for the department and said that if you dropped something, he would be the first person to pick it up for you.

Tributes poured in from former teammates and opponents. Like Nocco’s comments, the tributes focused as much on Halladay’s work ethic and personal attributes as on his ability.

Halladay finished his 16-year career with a 203-105 record. He hurled an incredible 67 complete games.

Halladay leaves behind a wife, Brandy, and two sons.

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Every out of Roy Halladay's playoff no-hitter