Sunday, April 27, 2008

Trip to PNC Park, chapter two

I attended the second game of the Phillies - Pirates series at PNC Park, along with 24,790 others, many of whom were Phillies Phans. The Phillies exploded for 5 runs in the 1st inning, effectively taking the Pirates - along with the crowd - out of the game almost immediately. The Phils batted a round plus one, fueled by Ryan Howard's 5th home run of the year and two Pirate errors. Morris, who fell to 0-4, threw a whopping 71 pitches while only lasting 1.2 innings.

Watching a game is always fun at PNC Park, and I had another great time, but I am realizing that I really like Citizen's Bank Park's setting much better than PNC Park's. The Pittsburgh police do an excellent job of crowd control, and there are no huge traffic jams, but that may be due mostly to the fact that Pittsburgh averages about one road per resident, and no one needs to take the same road as anyone else.

Unfortunately, tonight must have been "National Act Like An Idiot Day", but I didn't know, so I merely sat in my seat and watched the game. However, those who got the memo did a good job making themselves look stupid, Phillies and Pirates fans alike. I've never been to a game with so many rowdy fans. I think it might have been because the Flyers and Penguins are both in the playoffs, and hockey fans project the rivalry on to the non-rivalry Phillies and Pirates game.

With the win, the Phillies assure themselves of at least a .500 April, which is more than they could manage for the last two seasons. This is an important step forward in the hunt for October, which the Phils have been trying to take for the last several seasons.

The Phils now have a three game winning streak, the second time they have achieved that this season, and have reached their high-water mark for the season at three games above .500.

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