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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Ten Greatest Moments in Phillies Postseason History

10. Victorino's Grand Slam
-The Phillies were matched up against the Milwaukee Brewers in Game 2 of the 2008 NLDS after already securing a 1-0 series lead. After tying the score, 1-1, in the second, the Phillies loaded the bases against CC Sabathia after Brett Myers worked an exciting, 9 pitch walk. Shane Victorino, the little center fielder that could vs  the 6'7, 290 lb Sabathia. How did Victorino greet him? With a two-out grand slam into the porch in left that sent Sabathia to the bench and was the benchmark beginning to the Phils' World Series run.

9. "Get me to the plate, boys."
-In Game 4 of the 2009 NLDS, the Colorado Rockies scored three runs in the top of the eight inning to take a 4-2 lead on the Phillies. As the Phillies began to rally in the bottom of the eighth, legend has it that first baseman Ryan Howard paced back and forth in the dugout, bat in hand, and uttered, "get me to the plate, boys." Howard then hit a two out, two RBI double to tie the game in the eighth before Jayson Werth's RBI single in the ninth won the game and clinched the series for the Fightin's.

8. Ruiz's Infield Single
-After the Tampa Bay Rays had tied the score 4-4 in the eighth inning of Game 3 of the 2008 World Series, one of the most exciting innings in Phillies history began with a walk by none other than Eric Bruntlett. Bruntlett advanced to second on a wild pitch, then moved up to third on a throwing error. Rays manager Joe Maddon elected to intentionally walk two batters in a row to load the bases with no outs and put a force out at home plate. Carlos Ruiz stepped up three batters later and loped a little dribbler up the third base line that Rays third baseman Evan Longoria couldn't handle and it gave the Phils a walkoff win along with a 2-1 series lead.

7. In Case of Emergency, Use Stairs
-Perennial journeyman Matt Stairs forever etched his name in Phillies postseason lore when he sent Johnathan Broxton's 2-1 fastball deep into the seats in right to give the Phils the lead in the eighth inning of the 2008 NLCS Game 4. Victorino set the historics up by tying the game with a two run home run earlier in the inning. The win gave the Phils an insurmountable 3-1 series lead and Johnathan Broxton a year's worth of nightmares.

6. Rollins' Double
-In what has to be the most exciting play on this list, Jimmy Rollins lined a two-out, two run, walkoff double into the gap in right center field  in Game 4 of the 2009 NLCS that gave the Phils a 3-1 series lead. Johnathan Broxton was the goat again this time, as the nightmares from last year must have haunted him as he lead the inning off with a walk to none other than Matt Stairs himself.

5. Unser's Double
-The other famous double in Phillies history came in the ninth inning of Game 5 of the 1980 World Series. The Kansas City Royals led the game 3-2 going into the ninth, but the Phillies persisted. Mike Schmidt led the inning off with a single, which brought up Del Unser. Following up his heroics in the NLCS, Unser lined a double to right, which scored Schmidt and tied the game. Manny Trillo singled in Unser to take the lead and the Phils won the game 4-3 to take a 3-2 series lead.

4. 1980 NLCS Game 5
-In one of the greatest games of one of the greatest series in the history of the postseason, the Phillies rallied from being down three runs in the eighth inning against Nolan Ryan. After loading the bases, Ryan gave up a game-tying single to Unser, who later scored on a Manny Trillo triple that gave the Phils the lead in a five run eighth. After the Astros tied the game in the ninth, Gary Maddox's two out, RBI single in the 10th proved to be the game winner and series clincher and sent the Phillies to the World Series.

3. Roy Halladay's No-Hitter
-Roy Halladay, who had been waiting his whole career to pitch in the postseason, threw the second no-hitter in postseason history in Game 1 of the 2010 NLDS against the Cincinnati Reds. It was the first no hitter since Don Larsen threw a perfect game in the 1956 World Series. Time will tell how big of an impact this historic event has on the Phillies' run this year.

2. 1980 World Series Game 6
-The Phillies won their first championship in franchise history after defeating the Kansas City Royals, 4-1. Tug McGraw's leap off the mound is the most iconic image of Phillies postseason history, as he recorded Willie Wilson's record breaking fourteenth strikeout of the series. 

1. 2008 World Series Game 5, Part 2
-Game 5 of the 2008 World Series is one of the most interesting and controversial games in postseason history. The game was suspended due to weather after the top half of the sixth inning with the score tied at 2-2. Many fans were outraged at Commissioner Bud Selig's decision, claiming the game should not have been started at all. The game resumed two days later with pinch hitter Geoff Jenkins leading part 2 off with a double and eventually scoring to give the Phils a 3-2 lead. Pedro Feliz's RBI single in the 7th proved to be the game winner as the Phillies reversed the curse of Philadelphia and recorded the second World Series championship in franchise history.

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