The Philadelphia Phillies are back in the postseason for the second straight year, and this time, they have home-field advantage in the National League Wild Card Series. Fans looking to get into Citizens Bank Park will have to dig deep into their pockets, though.
According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, out of the four matchups in the MLB Wild Card Round, the one at CBP is 503 percent more expensive than the next-closest game. While it'll cost fans $199 just to get into the Marlins vs. Phillies game, it'll only cost the fans of the Texas Rangers and Tampa Bay Rays $33 to gain entrance to Tropicana Field:
If the team advances, it stands to reason those prices will keep climbing. The price of admissions should be worth it, though, and there is zero doubt the Philly fans will pull through yet again for the team atmosphere-wise, regardless of entry price.
Last year, the 87-win Phillies slipped into the playoffs during the final series of the regular season, locking themselves into a scenario where they had to start the playoffs on the road. They went to St. Louis and handled business against the Cardinals, setting up their improbable run to the World Series.
This year, the Phillies waited until game No. 162 to get to 90 wins, their highest total in the regular season dating back to their 102-win season of 2011. On September 26, the Phillies locked up the No. 1 wild-card seed in the NL in Philadelphia after a win against the Pittsburgh Pirates, paving the way for them to play in front of their home fans in the first round of the playoffs this year — and possibly later rounds:
Zack Wheeler will take the mound in Game 1. The right-hander finished the regular season at 13-6 with a 3.61 ERA and 212 strikeouts in 192.0 innings. The Marlins are sending Jesús Luzardo out to face the Phillies. The 26-year-old lefthander is 10-9 with a 3.63 ERA and 208 strikeouts in 178.2 innings.
The offenses are expected to get their hits, with the Marlins ending the year with a .259 team batting average, compared to Philly's mark of .256. During their regular-season games, the Marlins held the slight advantage, 7-6, in matchups against their division rivals.
One of the deciding factors could be environment.
Even those outside of Philadelphia realize how special it is to play at Citizens Bank Park in the fall. Tim Kurkjian of ESPN went on the John Kincade Show and noted that while the Marlins are familiar with playing in Philadelphia, they haven't played there in the postseason: "That crowd is tremendous. I was so impressed with what I saw there last year. ... That is a loud, raucous, intimidating crowd."
Last year, there was no denying the Phillies fans showed up and showed out for their team:
October baseball is back in Philadelphia, and fans are ready for Bedlam at the Bank, Part 2:
The Phillies players understand how important the fans are, and they'll be banking on the home crowd to bring that same energy through October and into November:
First pitch of Game 1 is scheduled for 8:08 p.m. ET on Tuesday night. While the price of entry will be steep, it's time for the Phillies fans at Citizens Bank Park to once again show the world how loud they can be and prove why the city has the best fans in baseball.