Comment of the Day: Why are there so many Phillies fans around here?

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Obviously the Phillies content around here has been nuts lately. It’s been driven, of course, by the fact that so many Phillies fans have migrated here in the past few months.  They’re active. They shoot me links or give me ideas for posts in their comments. And of course, knowing who’s reading, I’m more likely — quality of the content being equal — to link to something Phillies-related than I may be to link to something Rockies-related, for example.  Gotta serve the customers.

But why are they here?  What do they want? Sure, we’ve formed some rudimentary basis of communication with these hordes, but it’s mostly just the bare minimum required for us to communicate. “I like  post.” “I no like post.” “Cliff Lee sexy.”  “Ryan Howard good.” “You biased hater jealous of stuff that happened 30 years ago and you use that to heap scorn upon us.”  That sort of thing.

But Jonny 5 — a Phillies reader who has been around these parts long before the recent infestation — has a theory.  And it’s not a bad one:

I have a theory of why so many Phillies fans have ventured to HBT daily, like moths to a porch light. They need to be kicked around. Plain and simple. For generations, fans of Philly sports teams have been brutalized by the masses (rightfully so). We had to agree with the sucktitude of  Philly sports. There was never a doubt. But now, now that Baseball, football, and Hockey in the city have made an about face they still need to get their abuse. Which comes aplenty here. It’s all just a theory though. An abuse syndrome of sorts…

It’s boring to agree with everyone about how good your team is.  Some people can become addicted to a certain kind of friction, however. It used to come naturally from Philly sports outlets because there was so much to complain about. Now it’s all sunshine.

So if what I think Jonny is saying is true, I’m indispensable to you cheesesteak eaters.  Deep down in places you don’t talk about at parties, you want me to give you hell. You need me to give you hell.  You need me to help keep you miserable in the way you have become accustomed.

Right?

Steven Souza Jr. exits game after injuring his hand on a hit by pitch

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Rays’ right fielder Steven Souza Jr. left Saturday’s game after getting hit on the left hand by a pitch from Blue Jays’ right-hander Joe Biagini in the seventh inning. The pitch appeared to hit the top of Souza Jr.’s hand, causing the outfielder to crumple at the plate and requiring assistance from assistant athletic trainer Paul Harker as he exited the field. Postgame reports from the Tampa Bay Times’ Marc Topkin revealed that Souza Jr. sustained a left hand contusion and is scheduled to undergo further evaluation on Sunday.

While the diagnosis isn’t as bad as it could be, it’s still a tough break for the right fielder, who missed 40 days of the 2015 season after sustaining a fracture in his left hand on another hit by pitch. The team has yet to announce any concrete timetable for Souza Jr.’s return, though manager Kevin Cash indicated that they’ll be taking things day to day for the time being.

Souza Jr. is batting .326/.398/.543 with four home runs and 17 RBI through 104 PA in 2017. He went 1-for-2 with a base hit and a walk prior to his departure during Saturday’s 4-1 loss.

Video: Brett Gardner goes deep for his first and second home runs of 2017

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It’s been a slow start to the season for Yankees’ outfielder Brett Gardner, who entered Saturday’s matinee against the Orioles with a .188/.316/.234 batting line, three doubles and five stolen bases in his first 76 PA of the year. That all changed in the first inning of Saturday’s game, when Gardner skied a leadoff home run to right field:

Orioles’ right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez couldn’t find his footing against the Yankees in the second inning, either. Gardner returned for his second home run of the season, a three-run shot to lift New York 5-0 over Baltimore:

Measured at 411 feet in the right field bullpen, the left fielder’s blast marked the seventh home run hit by a Yankee this series. According to the club’s PR department, it’s also the first multi-home run game Gardner has recorded since September 2015. The Yankees currently lead the Orioles 7-0 through four innings.