Funny how things happen. Last night around midnight I was writing this blog about Pat Burrell retiring as a Phillie. Good grief, what could possibly be worse? It was a rather edgy piece, me having such great affinity and affection for Burrell. I really believe we wouldn’t have won the 2010 World Series without him, not because he played so great in the Series, but because he helped get us there in the first place and his very presence was inspiring to all of us. And besides, he deserves better than those pesky Philadelphia fans. He’s a San Francisco Giants hero and we love him here, we appreciate him. But I digress. Suddenly a severe thunderstorm began pounding down, so much so that I immediately grabbed a flashlight, powered down my pc, and went to bed.
So, this morning I’m back at my computer to begin where I left off, still stewing over the fact that Burrell was “forced” out of the Giants organization, forced to return to those Phillie Phanatics, when I notice an article by Paul Hagen, MLB.com. It changed everything so much that I had to completely rewrite my post. It’s a long article but here’s an excerpt that gave me a different attitude about “Pat the Bat” retiring as a Phillie.
“The final indelible image of Burrell at the end of his Phillies career was riding the Budweiser wagon at the head of the championship parade with his dog, Elvis, sitting next to him.
“That was the top,” Burrell said. “[Club president David Montgomery] asked me to ride with the Clydesdales, and of course I said yes. But I didn’t understand that I was going to be the first guy to turn onto Broad Street. And that was incredible — to look up and see all the people hanging out of the buildings. I just couldn’t imagine.
“It’s funny, because Mike Schmidt and some of those guys from the 1980 [World Series championship] team always said the best part of it was the parade. And I was thinking, ‘How could that be better than the actual moment of winning the whole thing?’ But it is.’ “
Here’s the entire article, a great read for a lazy Sunday afternoon while you’re waiting for that first pitch from your favorite team!
“Burrell Grateful for Chance to Retire with Phillies”
Well, okay then. I’ll keep both pictures of Pat Burrell’s parade days in my memory; one with the Clydesdales and one with the Trolley. Thanks for the memories Pat and I, for one, hope the Giants keep you on board for a long, long time. Once a Giant, always a Giant.
- Pat Burrell To Retire As A Philadelphia Phillie (philadelphia.cbslocal.com)
- Phillies Sign Pat Burrell To One-Day Deal (tracking.si.com)
- Giants’ Pat Burrell Retires From Playing, Begins New Position As Scout (tracking.si.com)
- Burrell, No. 1 overall pick in ’98, calls it a career (mlb.mlb.com)