Chooch and J-Roll Lead Group of Only Themselves in Gold Glove Balloting


Team veterans under “no pressure” to make season mean something; anything


It’s easy to dwell on the things that went wrong this year.  Pitching died off early.  Offense went pretty sideways.  Bullpen management wasn’t superb.  Injuries were everywhere.  Base stealing was okay I guess.  But defense!  That was the real show.

Nah, it wasn’t great either.  Lot of Ty Wigginton out there.  Freddy Galvis was fun to watch.  Remember when he won that foot race to first that saved Cliff Lee’s 10-inning shutout?  We lost, but in that moment, it was like, “We’re gonna win!  And we’re gonna get to the playoffs!”  We did either.  And the team we lost to went on to win the World Series.

So apparently they give out awards for Best Defense Guy, and they even narrow it down to each league so that teams like us, without a ton of good players anymore, could have a shot at walking out of this season with their dignity.  The Phillies have two nominees this year, down from three last year, two of which don’t play for the team anymore.  Shane Victorino has gone on to be crammed into that crowded Dodgers outfield while making ends meet as a part time TBS sports analyst and Placido Polanco was still being collected so the scientists can sew him back together, unfortunately on the one year anniversary of his initial exploding, meaning that when they bring him back to life he’ll probably be fueled by bloodthirsty vengeance or whatever.

But now it’s 2012, and our top defenders are Carlos Ruiz, who returns to the ballot, and Jimmy Rollins, who has been here before, but wandered off last year.  In celebration of this joyful defensive news, the Phillies officially dropped Ty Wigginton from the roster.

Maybe it’s the Giants’ second World Series win of our golden era; maybe it’s the disorienting nature of a baseball-less October, but it seems as though all of the Phillies 2012 season has boiled down to this.  And maybe, just maybe, they can make the last few months of our lives mean something.  Some could argue that giving our lives meaning is our own responsibility, and that Chooch can’t be expected to get me out of bed in the morning, or it isn’t J-Roll’s job to “fix” my drinking “problem.”  But those are merely the ignorant utterings of those who can’t taste the gold.