A-Rod made Sunday night Phillies loss to Mets so much worse
By Colin Newby
The Philadelphia Phillies suffered a devastating 8-7 loss on Sunday night at the hands of the New York Mets. An apparent game-tying, three-run homer off the bat of Rhys Hoskins — with two outs in the ninth inning — exhilarated a Philadelphia crowd desperate for a rally against their rivals.
Hoskins’ clutch hit was determined to be a double upon replay review. The tying runner was then placed on second base, however Bryce Harper struck out to end the ballgame.
The agony of defeat, however, wasn’t enough torture in itself for Phillies fans.
Irony of former 2009 Phillies World Series foe A-Rod in the booth
Former New York Yankees player Alex Rodriguez has not been well-received in his color commentary role for ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball broadcast. He and play-by-play announcer Matt Vasgersian provided commentary riddled with mistakes and generally out-of-touch assertions consistently throughout the game. It was the type of broadcast that makes you appreciate the attention to detail local announcers place on their individual teams.
However, Phillies fans never could’ve predicted the irony of A-Rod broadcasting a game in which an apparent home run to right field at Citizens Bank was overturned into a double — in a crucial spot in a call that went against the Phillies.
During Game 3 of the 2009 World Series, Rodriguez hit a fly ball to right field that initially appeared to stay in play. He came into second safely with a double. Upon further review, it was ruled a home run. The Yankees, of course, went on to win Game 3 and the series.
Then-Yankees manager Joe Girardi came out to argue the call on the field. Phillies fans will remember this as the game that outfielder Johnny Damon slid into second safely for a stolen base — and proceeded to stand up and steal third base because nobody was covering it.
Insult to injury
A-Rod continually forced his assertions throughout the night about his personal experience with “New York baseball” into commentary about the Mets — conveniently ignoring the fact that he played for a different New York franchise.
The Phillies have gone through some bizarre experiences with umpires so far this season. They won a game on a controversial call at home plate in Atlanta early in the season. They received a questionable dugout warning in St. Louis last week after no wrongdoing whatsoever. And, Andrew McCutchen was called out on Saturday for not following a straight line on the base paths — a head-scratching decision.
Both points of contention collided in the worst way on Sunday night. The Phillies lost because of a heartbreaking replay decision in a crucial spot, and doing it with A-Rod in the booth somehow made it so much worse.