From 1916-1949, the Phillies didn’t clinch anything. That’s 35 years.
From 1951-1975, the Phillies didn’t clinch anything. That’s 26 years.
From 1984-1992, the Phillies didn’t clinch anything. That’s 10 years.
From 1994-2006, the Phillies didn’t clinch anything. That’s 14 years.
There was a time when it was a very common thing for the Phillies not to clinch anything. I mean, look at all those years there. All those seasons with no one throwing their gloves up in the air, jumping around the pitcher’s mound, spraying each other with champagne, diving into the opposing team’s outfield pool, none of those things happened.
Then, for a while there, we had a pretty damn nice little run. Five straight seasons where all the Phillies did was clinch stuff.
This year will be the second year in a row in which the Phillies aren’t going to clinch anything. Instead, after the last game of the season in Atlanta, the Phils will simply walk into the clubhouse, dress themselves, and then hop a flight home for Philadelphia before dissipating to all four corners of the earth for a long off-season of October-less baseball.
For Phillies fans used to seeing this team clinch stuff, like, ALL the time, this next week and a half is going to be hard. Last night, we had to watch the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers clinch stuff, and it sucked.
Maybe the Phils are close to becoming one of those clinching teams again. Maybe they can enjoy a Red Sox-like resurgence next year.
Until then, though, we’re going to have to watch other teams do it.
Or, you can just watch the videos below and remember when the Phillies used to do this multiple times a year.
You know, I just want to smile again.
2007 NL East
Frankly, I’ve been looking online for the whole top of the 9th inning of this game, where you hear Harry Kalas grow more and more excited with each out and as the Mets finish getting blown out by the Marlins, but it’s nowhere to be found. So, this is all we have of the 2007 NL East division clincher. This is a highly underrated moment in Phils history, not talked about nearly enough for the goosebumps it created. The crowd, I mean, that was just unreal.
2008 NL East
I don’t think there is another defensive play in baseball history better than the one that clinched the 2008 NL East for the Phils. Sure, there have been lots of dramatic walk-off clinchers, but for sheer drama and the spectacularity (is that even a word?… no?… I’m making it one), I don’t think there is a clinching play by a defense better than this.
2009 NL East
Brad Lidge was a dumpster fire in the regular season, so the Phils brought him into a blowout to gain a little confidence and get him feeling good about himself ahead of the 2009 postseason. And it actually worked, as Lidge didn’t give up a single run in the NLDS or NLCS, and was only scored upon in that disastrous Game 4 or the World…
…you know what? Let’s not even talk about it.
2010 NL East
As we watch this imposter that calls himself “Roy Halladay” pitch for the Phillies here in 2013, this guy who threw in 2010 was the straight-up balls. Plus, it’s always nice to clinch in our home away from home, Nationals Park.
2011 NL East
Hey, Ryan Madson as Phillies closer was a thing that actually happened, huh? Sadly, Madson has not pitched in a regular season game since the end of this season.
Missing you, Ryan.
By the time the Phillies got around to clincher #5, it started to feel a little stale. And as you watch each of these five clinchers, you notice the energy level decrease and the forced enthusiasm of the announcers as they try to get worked up about something that everyone knew wasn’t good enough. Only another World Series clincher would suffice.
Now, we know better. Now, we’d all KILL for another NL East clincher. Or heck, even a Wild Card clincher.
Something. I JUST WANT TO CLINCH SOMETHING.
TELL ME WHAT I CAN CLINCH!!!