2008 World Series Game 5: Change?  Coming to Philly?  Tonight?  To Citizens Bank Park?

Mike Cunningham

There's been a lot of talk in 2008 about Change. Tonight, the Phillies have the opportunity to make a statement about themselves and about this town. They can erase a lot of demons. They clean up a lot of stains.

In the big picture, perhaps sports is just a minor inconvenience in the grand plan for the universe. But if you take the magnifying glass on google earth and you zoom in to One Citizens Bank Way Almost 46000 people will converge to scream, that this, THIS IS IMPORTANT. For those who don't get it, sports, and baseball in particular, is about families going to the ballpark on a Sunday, a couple of buddies standing over the bullpen railing trying to outdo each other with bad jokes, or a couple on their first date sharing their first kiss on the Kiss Cam. It's about the shared experience that complete strangers can embrace in a world where even co-workers walk by you without saying a word. It's about a place like beerleaguer, where Phillies fans stretching across the delaware valley, through pennsylvania, to the west coast to the dakotas and across the ocean to Europe even to those serving our country in the middle-east can argue fervently about something so inconsequential as adding a journeyman to the 40 man roster to the most important question of all, who starts at 3rd base and know that at the end of the day we where our pinstripes proudly.

And how one sports moment can change how a town feels about itself and each other. My Dad and I talked about what a victory would mean. And he mentioned how we didn't REALLY know what 1980 meant until now. Maybe it's because sports is more important to folks now than then. And maybe it matters MORE now because the shared experience is more than just waiting until the next day's newspaper or climbing out your window to bang pots and pans. Text messages... e-mails... facebook postings... phone calls... podcasts... blogs... all of that has connected us into this one moment.

A World Series victory could occur in Tampa for sure. And we'd be happy all the same, but to capture this moment, to capture a championship, HERE, in Philly, where over 3 million fans walked through the door 90 times, the Phillies have an opportunity to imprint on the DNA of those 46000 and the millions in the bars and in their homes waiting to burst at the seams. We've played the moment in our heads. We've dreamed about it. And if that happens tonight, those 46000 and the millions around the city and the world who never thought they'd get a chance to see another championship or for those who have yet to experience one at all and for those who know have the wisdom of knowing that this is a special thing. A city who might have their trophy case filled with championships might not recognize the importance.

But we can. Why can't Us? And tomorrow, we may be a little different. We'll have something special. We'll have change.


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