During the off-season, Ryan Howard participated in some workouts with
former Giants slugger Barry Bonds. They met for lunch in August when
the Phillies traveled to Los
They have become friends. The two kept in touch occasionally as
the season progressed. So, naturally, with the Phillies taking on Bonds’ former
team, it was time for another chat, right?
“No, not yet,” Howard said Friday. “I may give him a call and
see what’s going on – talk some trash, maybe.”
In all seriousness, Howard said he appreciated his time with
Bonds, baseball’s all-time home-run leader.
“He was great at getting the point across,” Howard said. “I
understood everything he was saying.”
The former San Francisco slugger’s best lesson was: Don’t fret
over the little things.
“As far as the shift was concerned, if you hit a line drive to
the second baseman and he’s playing in shallow right field,
basically, why are you upset?” Howard said. “What did you do wrong?
The guy threw the pitch and you hit the ball and hit it hard. He
just happened to be in the right position. Basically what you do is
go back up there and try to do the same thing, try and hit a line
drive and hit it over him. Next thing you know, it will go over the
Same lineup Charlie Manuel stuck with the same lineup for
Game 1 of the NL Championship Series that he used in the final two
games of the division series. That meant Jimmy Rollins was hitting sixth and Shane Victorino was leading off.
Manuel said he kept Victorino at the top because the Phillies have been winning with him
in the leadoff spot. The manager also remains unsure about Rollins’
ability to steal a base. He does not believe the shortstop is fully
recovered from a hamstring injury.
Extra bases Vice President Biden – an ardent Phillies fan – was in attendance for
Game 1. After Roy Halladay’s perfect game and no-hitter,
Biden called the Phillies pitcher. . . . Former Phillies pitcher Tom Gordon is in town working the series for
Sirius XM radio.