BizFeed: Philly Sports Teams Take Nosedive in TV Ratings

Philadelphia Phillies right fielder Ben Revere is unable to catch a fly ball triple by Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Howie Kendrick in the first inning of a July 6th game at Dodger Stadium.

Philadelphia Phillies right fielder Ben Revere is unable to catch a fly ball triple by Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Howie Kendrick in the first inning of a July 6th game at Dodger Stadium.

1. Phillies, Sixers and Flyers See TV Audience Shrink

The News: There’s not a whole lot of interest in Philadelphia sports these days. The Phillies are literally the worst team in professional baseball. The 76ers are coming off a horrific season, as part of its peculiar and (potentially genius) tanking plan. And the Flyers had an off year and missed the playoffs. That’s led to horrifying TV ratings for the three sports teams. For many fans, the Eagles’ Monday night opener against the Atlanta Falcons can’t come soon enough.

The Philadelphia Inquirer examined the Nielsen ratings, reporting that “Phillies viewership has plummeted 65 percent from 2011,” the last season of a glorious run of five straight playoff appearances. In news that should surprise nobody, “Sixers viewership has nosedived 72 percent over the same period.” The Flyers also lost audience, as viewership was down 36 percent. Read more »

Phillies Call Up Top Pitching Prospect Aaron Nola

Lehigh Valley IronPigs pitcher Aaron Nola (10) delivers a pitch during a game against the Rochester Red Wings on July 4, 2015. Lehigh Valley defeated Rochester 4-3.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs pitcher Aaron Nola (10) delivers a pitch during a game against the Rochester Red Wings on July 4, 2015. Lehigh Valley defeated Rochester 4-3.

There is actually some good news about the Phillies: Another promising minor leaguer is about to make his major league debut.

We were excited from the moment he was called up about Maikel Franco, and he’s rewarded us by hitting .284 with 10 homers and a .495 slugging percentage. Now, we get to be in on the ground floor with a pitching prospect.

The Phillies announced this morning that right-hander Aaron Nola will make his major league debut on Tuesday against the Tampa Bay Rays. He’ll wear No. 27. Read more »

Jonathan Papelbon to Phillies: “Shit or Get Off the Pot”

Jonathan Papelbon, Joe West

Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Jonathan Papelbon argues with Umpire Joe West after being ejected from the game against the Miami Marlins in the ninth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 14th, 2014.

For the umpteenth time in recent memory, Jonathan Papelbon had some strong words for Phillies management. “Shit or get off the pot,” the closer remarked at an MLB All-Star Game press conference. Read more »

The Phillies Are on Pace to Lose 109 Games — and It Could Get Worse

Philadelphia Phillies right fielder Ben Revere is unable to catch a fly ball triple by Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Howie Kendrick in the first inning of a July 6th game at Dodger Stadium.

Philadelphia Phillies right fielder Ben Revere is unable to catch a fly ball triple by Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Howie Kendrick in the first inning of a July 6th game at Dodger Stadium.

The worst team in Phillies history is one no one alive in 2015 saw. Appropriately, that was the team’s first season, in 1883. The Phils, then known as the Quakers, went 17-81-1 — a winning percentage of just .215.

But older fans may remember the 1941 Phillies — if they haven’t put that bad team out of their minds. The ’41 Fightins may be the second-worst team in Phillies history. They went 43-111-1, a .279 winning percentage. The team’s best players were outfielder Danny Litwhiler (who hit .304 with 18 homers) and lefty first baseman Nick Etten (who hit .311 with 14 homers). Only one other regular had an above-average OPS, and the team ERA was 4.50.

The 2015 Phillies are better than the 1941 squad, and the 1883 Quakers, too. But baseball teams play more games now. And, despite a .333 winning percentage, this year’s Phillies squad could end up as the team with the most losses in franchise history. After last night’s shutout loss to the Dodgers, the Phillies are 39-59. They are on pace to lose 109 games. Read more »

Sold: Jonathan Papelbon’s 1706 Rittenhouse Condo Snags Over $6 Million

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Images by TREND via BHHS Fox & Roach, Center City-Rittenhouse Hotel

Man, the hot stove for Phillies real estate news is burning higher and hotter than the actual trade rumors at this point. Former manager Ryne Sandberg just listed his luxury condo at The Beaumont in Old City and now comes word that current (and soon-to-be-former?) Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon has sold his 15th floor pad at 1706 Rittenhouse.

According to Redfin, the sale closed on June 29 and the Papelbon’s got $6.2 million for their home, which features a private elevator entrance, gas fireplace, a smart home system, a large fish tank and a ton of extras. You might recall that this is the second-ever resale of a unit at 1706 Rittenhouse. The first took place in late May, as the classy unit at 1901 traded for $7.1 million. At the time, Papelbon’s home was listed as pending, and Realtor Kelly Pendino Betley of BHHS Fox & Roach told us that “he got close to asking,” which was $6.4 million.

Read more »

Roy Halladay Was Pulled Over Twice for Speeding Yesterday

Photos via Twitter.

Photos via Twitter.

Roy Halladay spent just four years with the Phillies, and only two of them were good. No matter. The two good seasons were so good he’ll be beloved in Philadelphia forever. His 2010 featured a perfect game, a Cy Young Award and a no-hitter in the playoffs. His was the No. 1 pitcher on the best regular-season Phillies team of all time in 2011. He’s a legend to Phillies fans forever.

Halladay, who retired after the 2013 season, now runs one of the more entertaining athlete Twitter accounts. He flies planes, posts photos of his dog and the kids’ baseball teams he coaches and talks about how much he loved playing for the Phillies.

Yesterday, he tweeted about a speeding ticket. Then he tweeted about a speeding ticket again. It wasn’t a double-tweet; he was pulled over twice.

Read more »

Chase Utley No Longer Phillies’ Starting Second Baseman

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Philadelphia Phillies second baseman Chase Utley (26) sits in the dugout before playing the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park.

 

Chase Utley went on the disabled list with an ankle injury last month. He’s not expected to return to the lineup until at least after the All-Star Break, and probably more like a month from now.

And when he comes back, he won’t be the Phillies’ starting second baseman. Ruben Amaro said last night that when Utley returns from the DL, he won’t be guaranteed a starting spot.

“I would assume that Cesar will be our second baseman,” Amaro told reporters. “Chase’s situation will kind of dictate itself, how he feels. There’ll be time for him to play, I think. He could play some first base. He could play some second. But as far as I’m concerned, just like what our plan has been for a long, long time, that’s to give opportunities to young men who could be part of our future. Cesar Hernandez has been one of our best players on the field right now in a variety of ways.” Read more »

Brewers Bullpen Catcher Eats 18 Cheesesteaks in 3 Days

When opponents come to play the Philadelphia Phillies, they eat cheesesteaks.

It’s a pretty good deal: Teams that come to play the Phillies get as many cheesesteaks as they want, free of charge. And they take advantage of the deal. Opponents eat so many cheesesteaks there are records for cheesesteak consumption at Citizens Bank Park posted on the wall of the visiting clubhouse.

In April of last year, the Mets shattered the team record when they ate 103 steaks in one day at the ballpark (10 hours). The previous record was in the 80s. A delightful story about the feat by Mike Vorkunov at NJ.com notes bullpen catcher Eric Langill set the three-day record (17) the previous season. Fellow bullpen catcher Dave Racaniello set the single-day record with 7 1/2 — only to see White Sox bullpen coach Bobby Thigpen top his record later in the year.

This weekend, another historic cheesesteak record fell: Langill’s record was topped by bullpen catcher Marcus Hanel. Read more »

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