As promised from yesterday's blog post, here's the conclusion of my trip down nightmare memory lane: the worst memories of my history as a Phillies fan. Stay tuned for the best Phillies moments over the past 15+ years sometime soon!
#2: 2005: Craig Biggio walks off the Philsâ playoff dreams
Not remembering the 1993 season, I had never seen the Phillies in the playoffsâbut the 2005 team was on the brink. Early in September, they were on the thick of a playoff hunt and facing one of their biggest rivals for the wild card spot, the Houston Astros. After losing the first two games of the series, they had to win the third on Wednesday, September 7.
The game that followed seemed specifically designed to create maximum torture for Phillies fans. Trailing 5-3 in the bottom of the eighth, the Phillies scored three runs to take the leadâand you could feel the excitement at the ballpark. But with two outs in the ninth inning, closer Billy Wagner allowed runners to reach base on an error and an infield single, and Astros star Craig Biggio hit a 3-run home run to give the Astros the win and dash the Phils playoff hopes.
#1: 2011: Cardinals bust Phillies title hopes, Howard busts Achilles
The Phillies had won a team record 102 games in the regular season, but were tied at two games apiece heading into a winner take all playoff game five against the St. Louis Cardinals. Phils ace Roy Halladay threw what may turn out to be his last big-stage masterpiece, holding the hot-hitting Cardinals to one run. But through a combination of bad luck, good pitching and bad hitting, the Phils were unable to score a single run.
Star Ryan Howard, who represented the Phillies last out, ended the game by hitting a weak groundballâand ruptured his Achillies tendon running toward first. Howardâs agonized cries rang throughout the Philliesâ Citizens Bank Park as the Cardinals rushed the mound to celebrate, a surreal ending to what had been a great season.