BRYCE HARPER Is in Clearwater!

I just saw BryceForceOne fly over my home in Dunedin! I have the close-up of Middleton’s plane complete with Phillies logo as well as the flight tracker data as proof!

ETA: Ross had just left to walk our dog when the plane was due to fly over. If you know him, you know he’s rather stoic…imagine my surprise when I heard him yelling from about 3 houses down, “YOU SEE IT? IT’S THE PHILLIES’ PLANE! YOU SEE IT!”

That was worth $330 million right there.

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Another Fan Killed by Foul Ball at Dodger Stadium

I found this article today reporting that the LA County Corner has revealed that Linda Goldbloom died in August as a result of head trauma received from a batted foul ball at an LA Dodgers game. You can read ESPN’s article HERE.

Linda Goldbloom was a long time fan, mother of three and grandmother of seven.

If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you’ll know I wrote about another post about ANOTHER fatality at Dodgers stadium, Alan Fish. You can read that article HERE. That came after Freddie Galvis complained after one of his fouls hit a small girl in the face. I also wrote about the fan injured during World Series play in 2016 HERE.

Those are not the only fatalities. There is another, Clarence Stagemyer was killed in 1943 when he was hit in the head by a thrown ball.

Ross and I saw a similar situation in Lakewood back when Carlos Carrasco was with the BlueClaws. In this situation, part of the problem was inattentive parents who allowed their toddler to wander down the row. The toddler was a few seats away in the 2nd row when a ball was over thrown from third to first and it sailed into the stands. It hit the toddler square in the back, right between the shoulder blades.

I will never forget the sick “pop” it made as all the air left the toddler’s body. He didn’t scream. He didn’t make a sound. That’s why it was so scary. Luckily there was a doctor in the next section, who jumped into action. It took a few moments before there was a huge sucking sound and the toddler took a huge gulp of air and then started to cry. I was never so glad to hear a baby cry as I was that night.

As technology advances and players become stronger, foul balls will become faster, harder and more dangerous. Protecting fans has to be priority one.

I was glad that the Phillies raised the net behind home and extended it over the dugouts. It’s a great first step. Before the raising of the net, Ross and I would get hit by foul ball ricochets a few times a year and have several near misses. Last year, just one and it was straight up.

I get that snagging a free foul ball is part of the excitement, who doesn’t like to go home with one? For me, it lost its luster a bit when I saw an elderly woman lose an eye.

The ballparks are trying to cater more to millennials, making Instagram spots and other social media events to drive in the young ones. While this is great, they also need to realize that when people are looking at their phones and socializing, they are not watching the game and keeping an eye out for balls and bats that enter the stands.

Hopefully, MLB will take a look at spectator safety and increase the netting. It took one death for the NHL to act, in just a few months, they added more netting to protect fans. MLB has three deaths and not much has changed.

Phillies Play First Fall Instructional League Game-First Round Pick Alec Bohm Goes Yard

Fall Instructional League games are much like spring training games, they are more relaxed, coaches can end or “roll” an inning and pitchers often pitch only an inning.

Someone forgot to tell Phillies’ First Round draft pick Alec Bohm…he sent a ball almost out of Spectrum Field! He hit a blazing line drive that hit off near to top of the “F” on the sign above Frenchy’s Tiki Bar! It was a thunderous hit that even the sound was no-doubt-about it. I managed to catch this swing, landing and Bohm’s bat flip and run around the bases…

Phillies Release Fall Instructional League Roster and Schedule

After a spring where the Phillies never released a workgroup player list, I was beginning to think that we would never find out the schedule nor roster for the Fall Instructional League.

Then this morning–SURPRISE! They actually posted it. Seeing as Alec Bohm will be there, I have a feeling that Baseball Ross and I will be checking in to see the goings-on at instructs. Watch this space and Baseball Ross’ blog for pictures and articles starting next week.

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Phillies No. 2 Pick Alec Bohm

Here is the roster:

PITCHERS: Blake Bennett, RHP; Ben Brown, RHP; Starlyn Castillo, RHP; Jose Conopoima, RHP; Gabriel Cotto, LHP; Jonas De La Cruz, RHP; Maikel Garrido, LHP; Juan Geraldo, RHP; Kyle Glogoski, RHP; Michael Gomez, RHP; Rafi Gonell, RHP; Cristian Hernandez, RHP; Jake Kinney, RHP; Hsin-Chieh Lin, RHP; Jordi Martinez, LHP; Robinson Martinez, RHP; Tyler McKay, RHP; Jhordany Mezquita, LHP (No. 26); Juan Miranda, LHP; Efrain Morales, RHP; Francisco Morales, RHP (No. 13); Luis Pacheco, RHP; Nicoly Pina, RHP; Dominic Pipkin, RHP (No. 24); Mark Potter, RHP; Alfonso Puello, RHP; Brandon Ramey, RHP; Dalvin Rosario, RHP; Austin Ross, RHP; Yeison Sanchez, RHP; Victor Santos, RHP; Manuel Silva, LHP; Jaylen Smith, LHP; Manuel Urias, RHP; Victor Vargas, RHP

CATCHERS: Juan Aparicio, Arturo De Freitas, Mitchell Edwards, Freddy Francisco, Abrahan Gutierrez, Rafael Marchan, Logan O’Hoppe, Cesar Rodriguez

INFIELDERS: Alec Bohm (No. 2), Guarner, Luis Garcia, Juan Herrera, Matt Kroon, Seth Lancaster, Curtis Mead, Jose Mercado, Luke Miller, Luis Rojas, Logan Simmons, Cole Stobbe, Madison Stokes, Nicolas Torres, Christian Valerio, Rixon Wingrove

OUTFIELDERS: Ben Akilinski, Jose Cedeno, Carlos De La Cruz, Julio Francisco, Luis Matos, Simon Muzziotti (No. 30), Jhailyn Ortiz (No. 7), Ben Pelletier, Johan Rojas, Yerwin Trejo, Matt Vierling

The schedule:

Mon. Sept. 24 – vs. Blue Jays
Tues. Sept. 25 – at Orioles
Wed. Sept. 26 – at Pirates
Thurs. Sept. 27 – Camp day
Fri. Sept. 28 – vs. Pirates
Sat. Sept. 29 – Camp day
Mon. Oct. 1 – at Pirates
Tues. Oct. 2 – vs. Orioles
Wed. Oct. 3 – Camp day
Thurs. Oct. 4 – at Orioles
Fri. Oct. 5 – vs. Braves
Sat. Oct. 6 – vs. Orioles
Mon. Oct. 8 – at Braves
Tues. Oct. 9 – vs. Yankees
Wed. Oct. 10 – Camp day
Thurs. Oct. 11 – at Yankees
Fri. – Oct. 12 – vs. Yankees

Note: a “camp day” is a day where they may scrimmage or do drills have a short day or have off the field meetings so you may not see them on the field.

If you would like to read the announcement, you can read it HERE.

Threshers LHP McKenzie Mills to Marlins in trade for Justin Bour

Today the Phillies picked up 1B Justin Bour for cash and minor league LHP McKenzie Mills.

Mills has had a mediocre year, he has an ERA of 3.51, but is only 2-5 on the season. He’s also given up 7 home runs in 89 innings.

Here is the last picture of Mills in a Clearwater Threshers uniform last night as he walked out in the 5th inning:

This picture is from his last start at home with the Threshers last week:

May be a change of scenery will be just what he needs.

Easter Drinks at Ryan Howard’s Mansion

It was a very special Easter for Baseball Ross and I…we had drinks at Ryan Howard’s Mansion in Belair Beach.

We had a lovely drive over the bridge and the weather was perfect we couldn’t have asked for more.

Notice I didn’t say IN Ryan Howard’s house, just at the house.

April Fools!

Pictures from Philles Spring Training Day 6-First Day Full Team

Today was the first day that the entire major league team was due to report. Things are quite different under the Kapler regime are very different. Whereas they had previously started at 9 and went to about noon, now it starts “around” 11 and goes after 2.

Today, my friend Jose Taveras pitched live batting practice for the major league time since making the 40 man roster.

Jose Taveras

I was able to catch most of the big names as well:

Maikel Franco
Odubel Herrera
Roman Quinn
JP Crawford
Rhys Hoskins
Jesmel Valentin
Jared Eickhoff