The ring ceremony is the last remnant of a World Series – it’s the final gesture, the last bit of hardware, the epilogue in a joyous celebration dating back to late October.
Who expected the Braves bullpen to join in the celebration?
Truly, the ring celebration ushers in the new season and lays the the old one to rest. And yet, watching the Phillies miraculously come back from a 10-3 deficit with an eight-run seventh, all leading up to their 12-11 win, you couldn’t help but be transported back to their fantastic run last season.
The thing is, no matter what the deficit, no matter how bleak it looks, you can’t ever turn away. They’re just always in the damn thing. There is no quit in this group of players, and more than that, there is the confidence that they can stage the comeback when put in the position to do so.
And by the way, what is it with them staging so many of these comebacks against the Braves? That’s got to be chewing them up right now – they had a sweep practically in the bag, only to watch their bullpen allow the Phillies to circle the bases more then Tara Reid on a bender.
And life has a funny way of moving on, doesn’t it? Nice as it was to see Pat Burrell get his ring, it was – well, refreshing really – to see Raul Ibanez go 2-3 with three ribbies and a two-run jack.
And Chase Utley’s hip sure does a whole lot better, huh?
Charlie’s hunches seem to have carried over from last year as well. With Pedro Feliz up 3-0 in the count in the eighth, Charlie gave him the green light. He doubled the next pitch down the left field line.
And Brad Lidge remained perfect, largely in part to the insurance run the Phils got in the eighth inning. Yeah, he gave up a homerun, but Matt Diaz just seems to have his number. No matter – Lidge got the save, the Phils got the win, and, at least for one day, a little bit of last year’s magic stayed in town, glistening from the gold of championship rings.