Remembering 1993 Phillies

John Kruk celebrates after the Phillies defeated the Braves in the NL Championship Series.
John Kruk celebrates after the Phillies defeated the Braves in the NL Championship Series. (Daily News file photograph)
Posted: April 22, 2013

It has been 20 years since Daulton, Dykstra, Kruk, Hollins, Mitchy-Poo, and Schilling captivated the city with an improbable worst-to-first run that did not end until Toronto's Joe Carter launched a World Series-ending home run into the left-field seats at the SkyDome.

Throughout this season, The Inquirer will profile one of the cast of characters from that unforgettable 1993 team.

This week's profile: John Kruk.

Age: 52

Last game: July 30, 1995, with the Chicago White Sox.

Current job: Baseball analyst at ESPN.

Home: Recently moved to Naples, Fla., with his wife, Melissa, and two children.

Favorite regular-season memory from the 1993 season: "I don't know if it had anything to do with the game. It was just the fun every day. You couldn't wait to get there just to see what was going to happen.

"But didn't we play a game that lasted until 4:40 in the morning? We were right in our prime at about 3:30. We knew we had them. We knew the Padres would fold after that because once we get past those hours, we were dialed in. We had less people at midnight but more at 2:30."

Favorite postseason memories: "The first game [of the NLCS] when we make a defensive switch and Batty [Kim Batiste] makes the error, but he comes back with the big hit in the 10th against the Braves. That was huge. We lose that game, the series is probably different."

Describe the clubhouse after Joe Carter's home run: "We knew it would never be the same. We talked about it after Game 6 of the World Series. We were just sitting there, and Darren [Daulton] was icing his knees, and he just looked at me and goes, 'I wish we were playing tomorrow, but my body is done.'

"Bill Giles came in, and he was crying, and we were like, 'Why are you crying? We had a heck of a run.' But I remember when we got back to Philly, got off the plane, and said goodbye to everyone. I said, 'This is never going to be the same.' It couldn't be. I don't think anyone would allow it. Could you imagine if we tried to be that way today with Twitter and all these phones? It would be illegal to have us on one team."

Surprised you ended up staying involved with the game? "I think I told you guys when I was done playing that I'd never see you again. I wasn't going to be around. I was going to go back to West Virginia and do nothing. You realize pretty soon that doing nothing costs a lot, and it does get boring. There's only so much golf I can play and beer I can drink. Thank God for winters. They saved my liver."

- Bob Brookover