This is sometimes called the first half of the season to the All Star Break, it actually is a little more than the official half way mark which is 81 games, but at the All Star Break the Phillies find themselves still in first place with a slim lead over the Marlins and the Mets.
The Phillies go into the break with 52 wins, not too bad for a team that most didn't pick to front run with the division lead by now. The Mets have been pouring it on over the last 8 games and have won all of them in this critical time to surge forward to the top near the Phillies. They can make it 9 in a row with a game to be played tonight in the last game to be played leading up to the All Star Game on Tuesday night, and the Home Run Derby on Monday night.
The Home Run derby should be interesting, the Phillie player with the most home runs isn't in the All Star game even though he leads the league in HR's and RBI's. Who would figure that Ryan Howard wouldn't be in the game this year. The Cubbies will have 8 players in the All Star game, and this is probably why we don't get to see Burrell, or Howard in this years All Star Game. A team should be limited to 5 players maximum to spread it around a bit more and give the fans more of the players from different teams. Yes, the Cubs have played great this year, but 8 players in the game? That is a bit much.
On the All Star Game itself, it is the last time around for the original 'Yankee Stadium' - the House that Ruth Built! This new stadium can become known for the stadium that corporate America took over Yankee Stadium with all the wildly high prices they will be charing for tickets there. So much for the little guy, the guy who like the Yankees and now with the advent of $2500 a game luxury box seats, where is he to go now? Here is a quote from ESPN regarding the new pricing of seats at the new Yankee Stadium next year:
"NEW YORK -- Those $250 box seats at Yankee Stadium will seem inexpensive in 2009.
The New York Yankees will charge $500 to $2,500 for seats near home plate in the first five-to-eight rows of their new ballpark. They already have commitments from ticket-buyers for all 122 of the front-row seats.
Lonn Trost, the team's chief operating officer, sent a letter to season ticket-holders on March 14, outlining premium seating in the new $1.3 billion ballpark and inquiring if fans wanted to upgrade. The team's Web site touts the premium areas as "an exclusive experience for those with discerning taste who seek the very best that life has to offer."
Trost said Friday the team already had received more than 3,000 upgrade requests for next year.
"It was a remarkable response," he said.
In the final season of the current Yankee Stadium, the team has 162 Legends seats ringing the infield mostly in two rows, with tickets priced up to $1,000 a game. Behind that are 3,000 Field Championship seats, which sold for $250 a game this year as part of season tickets. Those same seats cost just $25 in 1996.
The new ballpark will have 1,800 Legends Field Suite seats in 25 sections ringing home plate, with seats 20 feet closer to the infield than the current stadium. Food and nonalcoholic drinks are included in the ticket price, and there will be a private entrance, elevator and concourse.
So enjoy this game true Yankees fans, the rent is going up and if you don't have the dough, you won't be in the seat.
More posts on the Phillies coming up in the next two days for the All Star break numbers!
Rich Baxter - Fightin Phillies blog