Roy . . .Rod . . . and Roopholyn
9/4/10 - 6:18 PM
A Federal Express package arrives at the visitors clubhouse at Citizens Bank Park.
Utility infielder Alcides Escobar notices the item and reads the label.
From: Los Angeles Dodgers.
Hey guys! Good luck against Roy Halladay. A Dodger fan who was in that Hangover flick hooked me up with some stuff and it helped me last Monday! Use it wisely!
Escobar opens the package and sees a pouch of white powder. The native of La Sabana, Venezuela knows exactly what to do next . . .
With a game-time temperature of 76 degrees and a steady wind out of the northwest, Roy Halladay can feel a semblance of post-season energy for the first time in his career.
With the home crowd cheers vibrating in the Phils dugout, Halladay notices the soft glow of blue Powerade along his traditional seat on the bench. It is cool night, but Halladay's heart is pumping and so he decides a drink would be nice. He sips the liquid . . .
Bottom 1st: 0-0
Roy Halladay sets down the half-empty Powerade bottle and watches Jimmy Rollins walk to the batter's box. But just as Rollins' name is announced to the crowd, Halladay feels a buzzing sensation in his head. He rubs his eyes, but is interupted by Rollins shouting "Should've laid off that curve!"
Halladay: "That's what you get for swinging first pitch!"
Rollins: "The count was 2-2 with a foul - that's SIX pitches GENIUS!"
Confused, Halladay settles to watch Placido Polanco go to work But the buzzing returns and Hallady rubs his eyes again.
Polanco: "Got to lay off that outside change-up!"
Halladay: "Try taking a pitch next time, Polly!"
Polanco: "Dude, the count was 2-0. What game are you watching?"
Halladay rolls his eyes and watches Chase Utley step to the plate. He starts to rub his eyes again just as Ruiz taps him and says "Let's go big guy - side's retired!"
Halladay: "Can't anyone take a stinking pitch - I just sat down!"
Ruiz: "Dude, Chase saw 8 pitches - he had 3 fouls! Get your head in the game bro!"
Halladay doesn't dispute Ruiz's account. After all, he cant't understand a word his Panamanian catcher is saying.
Top 2nd: 0-0
Halladay climbs the mound and reminds himself that Prince Fielder would lead off the 2nd inning.
"Got to be careful here! This guy's a tub of lard but he's strong as an ox!'
The pitcher rubs his eyes, but is then interrupted by a loud chorus of boos. Halladay opens his eyes to see Fielder jog across home plate! The Phanavision score board confirms Halladay's worst fears . . .
Brewers 1 - Phillies 0.
Halladay slaps himself in the face, then retires Casey McGhee and Chris Dickerson without incident.
"I just have to get Alcides Escobar here and keep this at 1-0"
The pitcher rubs his eyes, but is interrupted by even louder booing. He opens his eyes to see Alcides Escobar jog across home plate!
Bottom 2nd: MIL2 - PHI 0
Halladay sits in the dugout and wonders how on earth he gave up two homers he didn't remember throwing.
Ruiz interrupts Halladay's ruminations.
Ruiz: "Let's go big guy! Time to work!"
Halladay: "It's bad enough we're not scoring, but can't the guys at least let me get some rest!"
Ruiz: "Howard and Werth went back-to-back! Game's tied 2-2! We've got this!"
Since Ruiz's inability to use syllables renders his pep talk incomprehensible, Halladay glances at the Phanvision and nearly spits out his gum.
Top 3rd: 2-2
Halladay remembers facing Ryan Braun (pop to short), Prince Fielder (double), Casey McGehee (grounder to pitcher) and Chris Dickerson (liner to third).
But he'll never remember the 92-mph Napalm ball that Corey Hart sent over the right-field fence.
Bottom 3rd: MIL 3 - PHI 2
The slow and steady recovery of the Phils left-handed sluggers continues as Chase Utley lines a Bush change-up into center field to score Jimmy Rollins from second.
Roy Halladay cheers as he watches . . . on Comcast SportsNite two hours later.
Top 7th: 3-3
Standing on the mound with two outs and four scoreless innings under his belt, Roy Halladay is relieved that his blackouts have ended.
As Corey Hart steps into the box, Halladay realizes that will be the ninth time he's allowed 3 home runs in a game. He rubs his eyes and wonders how he'll deal with the embarassment . . .
Halladay doesn't even open his eyes until Ryan Braun is announced as the next batter.
The return of Chase Utley to the Phillies infield has left Wilson Valdez with a lot more time to ruminate during games. The utility infielder knows something is up with Roy Halladay, but can't quite put his finger on . . . THAT'S IT!!!
The native of Bani, Dominican Republic grabs the half-empty bottle of Powerade. He suspects that the thrilling game might have made the Brewers catcher thirsty . . .
Bottom 7th: MIL 4 - PHL 3.
While Roy Halladay was opening the bottle of tainted Powerade before the game, several Phillie batters were flagellating themselves over being punked by Brewer releiver Kameron Loe the night before.
Shane Victorino works a 2-1 count, then shortens his swing to poke a Low Loe sinker (it looks funny at 2:28 AM - DON'T JUDGE ME!!) to center for a leadoff single.
Carlos Ruiz shortens his swing and pokes another Low Loe sinker to right for a single.
GOING PIGEON PRESENTS: MYTH VS. TRUTH
MYTH - The Phillies offense is built around hitting tons of home runs
TRUTH - The Phillies offense is AT IT'S BEST when guys shorten their swings, take pitches and put runners on base to create stress for the opposing pitchers. The 3-RUN HOMERS are the occasional by-product of Charlie Manuel's offense by attrition.
Wilson Valdez enters the game as a pinch-hitter with runners at first and second. He decides to have some fun with Brewers catcher Jonathan LuCroy.
Valdez: "Man, these tight games in September make me thirsty!"
LuCroy: "I know, man! I just slammed half a bottle of Powerade between innings - really hit the spot!"
Lefthanded New Jersey native Zach Braddock comes in to relieve Kameron (Cameron) Loe (Lowe).
Valdez shows bunt as LuCroy rubs his eyes.
The catcher blankly holds down two fingers for a change-up, even though this is a clear fastball situation. Ball one.
LuCroy clears his head and calls for a fastball, but Braddock is now behind and nervous. Ball two.
More nervous. Fastball in dirt. Ball three.
Fastball in dirt. Four-pitch walk.
Once again, Jimmy Rollins abandons his uppercut when it could be useful, and nubs a weak grounder to McGehee at third. The third baseman makes a smart throw to LuCroy at the plate to force out Victorino.
LuCroy hears a dejected buzz from the Phils faithful. He sees one out on the Phanavision, and wonders how that happened.
The catcher rubs his eyes, only to be interrupted by a deafening roar.
When LuCroy flips on Comcast SportsNite in his hotel room, this is what he sees.
Polanco flies to medium left field. Ryan Braun settles and throws home. Ruiz breaks and the ball comes in about 10-feet up the third base line.
Forgetting his job is to secure the ball at all costs, LuCroy blanky waits for the ball to arrive in his mitt. As Ruiz crosses home, Zach Braddock races behind the batters box to retrieve the ball.
LuCroy sees Wilson Valdez sprinting home, but fails to realize that Valdez is GOING TO SCORE. Braddock delivers a perfect throw that beats Valdez by five feet, but in his trance LuCroy catches the ball and stabs belt-high as Valdez slides underneath his mitt.
Final score: Phillies 5 - Brewers 4
I am Don Pigeon and I am OUT!!!