For long time fans, here is an update. On former Pharm Hand Derrick Mitchell:
The first kickoff was just short of the end zone and was run back-Derrick made the tackle!
The other 4 kick-offs (as of the middle of the 4th quarter) were all to the end zone! The fourth actually went through the end zone, what a leg!
He’s really doing well and I am so happy for him!
(All photos courtesy of ESPN U)
If you’ve been following my blog for any length of time, you’ll know that one of my favorite players has been Derrick Mitchell. I’ve followed Derrick since his days in Clearwater and feel lucky that I can call him a friend. Even when he went to the Braves organization, Baseball Ross and I continued to follow him. Both of us, were shocked and saddened when he was released by the Braves organization in July.
The news this week, is great for Derrick, he has a new dream to chase: one as a college freshman. He is also a walk on to Western Michigan University’s football team. While he does not have a set position as of today, the coach says “he can kick punt, throw and run.”
As someone who had faithfully followed Phillies baseball for a decade and knowing some of the players eight years, you get attached to them, invested in their progress. You watch them progress and succeed and get oh so close to catching their dream.
Two years ago, I wrote about Derrick Mitchell and how excited we were that he had gotten a chance to play with the big team ( you can read that blog HERE) and how all had hoped that at the worst, he’d end up a September call up. That didn’t happen. It didn’t happen last year either. During the off season, Derrick signed with the Braves and guess what? After being in camp a few WEEKS (he reported to the minor league camp)they have given him a shot in the big game. He pinch-ran, then hit a sac-fly RBI in the seventh. Not too bad! A mistake by Amaro.
Seth Rosin, RHP, was with us last year. He was solid but the Phillies didn’t protect him and we lost him during the Rule 5 draft. He’s now on the 25-man roster with the Dodgers. Another Ruben Mistake.
Tuffy Gosewisch was a good catcher with a lot of promise, but apparently the Phillies didn’t think so as they traded him to the Diamondbacks for a half-used stick of pine tar. Gosewisch has joined Rosin in Australia and has also made the Diamondbacks 25-man roster. Another Ruben Mistake.
What do these three guys have in common? They weren’t given a look by the Phillies and have gone on to find success with other teams. More importantly, these are the ones we can think of just off the top of our heads.
How many times can the Phillies do this? I just keep thinking, ARM, Another Ruben Mistake. Maybe Amaro forgets that three strikes and you’re out. Mitchell-Strike One, Rosin-Strike Two, Gosewisch-Strike Three—you’re outta here…well we can wisch.
(Original phot from fightinforphilly.com edits are mine)>
Back in Baseballtown, it was good to be home. There’s something special about First Energy Stadium, to me. I love it’s brick, the way the players have to cross the concourse to get from the locker room to the field, the BEST hotdogs in all of baseball, the ostriches.
Ok, I’m not sure I like the ostriches. There’s a whole load of reasons and I’m not really into the “rebranding”, but I’m not going into that now. Let’s just look at this picture of a large bird in a little truck and leave it at that.
I really had a good time. I got to see my favorite players, Derrick Mitchell, Jesse Biddle, Kelly Dugan, Austin Wright, and Seth Rosin before the game.
Derrick Mitchell led off. Now before I start, I want to go back to two years ago this week. Back then Baseball Ross and I lived in Harrisburg, PA and we went to a lot of games in Reading. I had talked to Derrick Mitchell that night and had complimented him on his home run the night before and asked him to hit one for me for my birthday. He laughed and said, “It doesn’t work that way.” Well that night it did. He hit a home run for me for my birthday. I always tell Derrick that that was one of the coolest birthday presents I had ever gotten. (If you want to read the blog from that night and see the video, you can click HERE)
So Derrick was up to bat and then…it happened (again) he KILLED a ball right over left center near the 370 sign.
Another homer…and what is this week??? That’s right, my birthday. After the game, I saw Derrick, he had remembered that my birthday was this week and he even said, “I felt really good after that first one, I’d have hoped to hit you a second for your birthday.” It blew me away, that he could remember! (And people wonder why Derrick is my favorite.)
I also have to mention a funny thing that happened after the game…I was talking to Derrick as I mentioned above and a kid about ten years old kept interrupting while Derrick and I were talking. When Derrick left to go back to the locker room, we said our goodbyes and he gave me a hug. The kid then looked at me and asked me if Derrick was my dad! (ROTFL) Considering that I had been feeling, err older since it is my birthday this week, that kid really made me feel good.
I got to see Kelly Dugan and Maikel Franco in their Fightins uniforms for the first time as well…
Another cool thing that happened was that I got to visit the press box. I had the privilege of becoming friends with a talented local writer who kindly invited me to visit him in the press box. It was my first time in a press box during a game. I found it quite cool and was grateful to have had the chance to check out the game from that very different perspective.
Something that Ross and I love is the Berks hot dogs. When you see as many games as we do, you get stuck eating a lot of food from the concessions. Over the years, you get to appreciate the places with good food and loathe others where the food is not palatable. I love the concessions in Reading. The Berks hotdogs are the best in baseball.
Reading lost that night, but while I wish they had won, I still had a great time. I saw my favorite players, had a homer hit for my birthday, saw my new friend in the press box, saw my favorite usher and had a great hot dog. We saw a beautiful sunset (picture at the top of the page).