Ryan Howard Needs Surgery, Out for Up to Eight Weeks

The most recently injured Phillie is in for a long road of recovery, as confirmed by his scheduled MRI yesterday. Ryan Howard will be out of commission for six to eight weeks following a surgery for a torn meniscus in his left knee. The MRI yesterday confirmed the tear, but no surgery date has yet been set. Phils GM Ruben Amaro, Jr. appeared cautious but optimistic about Howard’s injury, saying that there  ”could have been much more significant damage.” And, hey, at least Roy Halladay will have someone to keep him company on the disabled list besides Erik Kratz. [ESPN]

Ryan Howard on Disabled List; MRI Scheduled for Today

Ryan Howard is out of play for the next two weeks, having been placed on the disabled list on Saturday following problems with his left knee. An MRI is scheduled for today, with Ryan telling the AP that he “want[s] to be smart about it” and not cause any further injury. However, Howard did play through the pain Saturday because he thought he “could go out and play and try to give it a go.” With all this trouble for the Phils this season, perhaps the city should just send the whole team a card: “Get Better. Soon.” [ESPN]

Watch Ryan Howard on “The Office”

Last night, while live Ryan Howard was going 1-4 against the Braves, taped Ryan Howard was on The Office. Synopsis: Howard, playing himself, shows up to a sports marketing firm run by Jim and Darryl, ostensibly to work out a deal. Instead, he takes the meeting in a different direction, pitching an idea for a Hollywood movie: The Big Piece. The conceit: Howard, mild-mannered ball player, smacks a homer so far it gathers a coating of space dust. When it falls back into orbit, it smacks Howard right back, turning him into: The Big Piece (Howard’s nickname). As Howard puts it in a well-acted performance, it’ll be “half-biopic, half-superhero movie.” Kudos to the costume people too–Howard’s three-piece, fat necktie getup is quintessential dressy athlete.

Howard appears three times, at 5:40, 7:00, and 17:20.

Ryan Howard (the Baseball Player, not the Character) to Appear on The Office

NBC is struggling. So is Ryan Howard’s career. But two wrongs make a right, so The Office is bringing on the Phillies slugger for an episode to air in late-March. And as Philly Post contributor Steven Silver notes, there’s more than a little serendipity to this pairing.

For as long as I can remember, there have been two Ryan Howards in the Eastern half of Pennsylvania: The Philadelphia Phillies first baseman, and the Scranton-based character onThe Office, played by B.J. Novak. They’ve been around for about the same amount of time, too-  Howard the baseball player was a rookie in 2005, while Howard the character made his debut when The Office started that same year.

Howard will be worked in (presumably as himself) when the John Krasinski character tries to start a Philly-based sports marketing firm. [TechnologyTell]

Philly Teams Are Paying More Than $50 Million for Bad Knees

The most remarkable thing about the new list of the 25 highest-paid athletes in Philadelphia that it’s an orthopedist’s dream. Phillies pitchers Cliff Lee and Roy Halladay lead the list at $21.5 million and $2o million apiece—deals that made sense when they were signed, even if 2012 was a bit of a bummer for them. But get the next three names on the list:

• Ryan Howard: $20 million.

• Andrew Bynum: $16.889 million.

• Chase Utley: $15.285 million.

So much money. So few healthy knees.

Now, Howard and Utley brought us a World Series championship back in 2008, so Philadelphians are inclined to be patient. Bynum’s another matter—he still hasn’t played his first game for the 76ers, since a trade that many observers hoped would transform Doug Collins’ crew into championship contenders.

Still: What that means is that three of the top-five most expensive athletes spent a huge chunk of 2012 sidelined with knee injuries of various sorts. And come to think of it: The entirety of that top five served up mediocre performances during the year. The worst part? We can’t blame Andy Reid for any of it. [Philadelphia Business Journal]

Ryan Howard, Krystle Campbell Get Married in Hawaii

If you don’t care about Britain’s monarchs, maybe you’ll be interested in Philly royalty: Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard married Krystle Campbell over the weekend in Maui. Current and former teammates at the wedding included Shane Victorino and Ben Francisco. Campbell, a former teacher and Eagles cheerleader, was engaged to Howard in April 2011. It’s such a joyous occasion that there’s no reason to lament that Howard can’t hit left-handed pitching. Oops. [Dan Gross]

Don’t Look Now, But the Phillies Are on a Bona Fide Winning Streak

Phillies Win Again. A 3-2 win over the Dodgers—in part thanks to Ryan Howard’s first home run of 2012—makes three straight for the good guys. Oh, and Doc’s on the hill on Tuesday. Not so fast with that fire sale, Rube. [Phillies]

Rape at Rec Center. A 12-year-old girl says that four 14-year-old boys raped her in a stairwell of a Southwest Philly rec center. Police are investigating the incident at Francis Myers Recreation Center. No arrests have been made. [Daily News]

Defecating Cabbie Fired. The cab driver who was caught on camera taking a dump on a Philadelphia city sidewalk has reportedly been fired by Freedom Taxi. His license has been suspended pending an investigation, and he faces a fine of $350 to $1,000. [Daily News]

Paternoville Is No More. The student group at Penn State that camps out for the best seats at football games has officially changed its name to “Nittanyville” in the wake of the findings of the Freeh Report. [USA Today]

Service to Dallas. Spirit Airlines has announced service from PHL to Dallas-Fort Worth will begin in April 2013. [Daily Times]

Murder in Feltonville. A man was found shot to death inside a limo in the city’s Feltonville section. Witnesses say that three young men fled the scene. Police picked up one young man a few blocks from the shooting. He was supposedly covered in blood. [NBC Philadelphia]

Police Advisory Commission Ousts Executive Director. The Police Advisory Commission is a civilian oversight board that handles complaints against police. It hears the complaints and makes recommendations to Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey. The head of this commission has been ousted and blamed for tardy decisions. [Daily News]

Man Arrested for Impersonating Officer. Again. For the second time in five years, 53-year-old Kenneth DiLuigi was arrested for allegedly impersonating a police officer. Authorities say he tried to pull cars over on the A.C. Expressway. [Philly.com]

Ruben Amaro Jr. Says the Phillies Stink

Phillies General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. was on 94 WIP this morning to discuss the team’s state of affairs. In doing so, he mention that, “we stink right now.” Not an inaccurate description, but good news is on the horizon in the fact that Ryan Howard will probably, but maybe not, but almost definitely be in the lineup for the Phils on Friday as they take on the Braves at Citizens Bank Park. Also, Amaro addressed the looming trade deadline and that the team’s performance between now and July 31st will dictate whether the team is buying or having a fire… sale. [Crossing Broad]

Ryan Howard Could Start His Rehab Stint Soon (Like, Tomorrow)

As Philadelphia prepares for the return of its prodigal son, murmurs of Ryan Howard’s return are growing louder. In fact, the Big Piece might suit up in Clearwater on Thursday, which means he’d be back in the Bigs in time for the Phils homestand that begins on July 20th. He’ll be allotted a maximum of 20 days in the minors. So, for those of you keeping score at home, the Phils have won five of their last seven games, Carlos Ruiz leads the National League in batting average, Chase Utley returns to the team tonight, Howard might be back by July 20th, and Roy Halladay is on schedule in the rehabilitation of his throwing arm. This season ain’t over just yet. [Philly.com]

Ryan Howard Hit Two Home Runs Today

Chase Utley and Ryan Howard (and, sure, Laynce Nix, too) were in rehab exhibition action today as they attempt to come back from their respective injuries. Utley went 1-for-4 for Willamsport while Ryan Howard did his best Jim Thome impression and HIT TWO HOME RUNS TODAY. Sorry for yelling. Oh, Laynce Nix also homered, so there’s that. [Philly.com]

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