I don’t care for the Phillies anymore, one day I realized they didn’t care about winning so why should I care about them. Of course, then the started to care and got really good. That’s irony. But still, despite Joe Carter ruining my 13th birthday, I still have fond memories of the ’93 team, who caught lightning in a bottle and managed to keep it there for 99% of the season. Hard to not be a fan of that bunch of misfits. I’m also a fan of oral histories, the facts might not be right but it’s fun hearing from the players, coaches, executives and the people that covered them years later, free of the burden of keeping their mouth shut about guys still playing. Philly Magazine has a pretty good one of that scrappy team.
Sports are supposed to be fun. The ’93 Phillies were nothing but fun.
Larry Andersen: Sometimes we’d spend the night in the clubhouse. We’d get up, strap ’em on, and go get ’em the next day. That is, if you could avoid Kruky playing wiffle ball until five in the morning.
John Kruk: I love wiffle ball. There was a day game, and I was supposed to have the day off. One of our guys came in with an injury, and they told me I was playing. I had finished my last adult beverage at 7 a.m. after pitching 45 innings of wiffle ball with the clubhouse guys. I think Curt Schilling was pitching that day. I told him, “If you want to win this game, you don’t want them to hit it to me.”
Mike Missanelli: Lenny Dykstra would walk around in his underwear with a cigarette, a cup of coffee and a bat. He’d ask some clubhouse guy to go out and throw BP.
John Kruk: The bullpen guys ate a lot and watched interesting television in the video room. I went back there after a particularly bad at-bat and they had seven or eight TVs; they had everything on except our game. They had pizzas and cheesesteaks. That’s the way they were.
Kevin Stocker, shortstop: Larry Andersen would be in the bullpen in the third inning completely covered in ketchup.
Larry Andersen: I befriended a seven- or eight-year-old in the bullpen at Dodger Stadium. His dad was a police officer, and for my 40th birthday they sent me a can of Instant Hair. Mitch Williams might have gone a little overboard with it, but I went out there and took batting practice without a hat for probably the first time ever. People were asking if I’d gotten a wig.
Mitch Williams: Every team needs some guys around to remind them the game is supposed to be fun. But maybe I gave him more hair than he needed.
John Kruk: We could be goofy and do whatever we wanted up until five minutes before the game. And after the game, we could do whatever we wanted up until five minutes before the next game.