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Ryan Howard

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December 31, 2008
What? Ryan Howard, Mr. Phillies, finished fourth in a year when the Phillies won the World Series? Well, yes. So much is made of what Howard does too much of that sometimes what he does do seems underappreciated. It is appreciated exactly the right amount. In a two-horse race, Howard finished second in NL MVP voting, well behind Albert Pujols, mainly because Howard, the 2006 MVP, struck out 199 times and hit .251, lower than any MVP winner. Howard, in his third full season, led the NL in home runs and RBI, but with all the whiffs and the laughable .215 average through June, finishing second was justice served.
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September 11, 2010 | By Ray Parrillo, Inquirer Staff Writer
NEW YORK - Ryan Howard either can't explain it or would prefer not to even try. After all, superstition is in just about every baseball player's DNA, so why invite a jinx? But for whatever reason - sharper focus, pennant-race adrenaline - September has been Howard's most productive month since he took root as the Phillies' full-time cleanup hitter in 2006. He's at it again. Howard hit an impressive bases-empty home run to tie Friday's game against the Mets at Citi Field, 3-3. It was his fifth homer in 10 games this month and third in three games.
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April 15, 2009 | By Andy Martino and Jim Salisbury INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
Ryan Howard has made a number of changes since the Phillies won a World Series championship last October. He signed a multiyear contract. He dropped about 20 pounds. He labored to improve his defense. And, canny observers may have noticed, he began wearing a mouthpiece during games. The first baseman, 29, is always seeking ways to improve. When he saw Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Manny Ramirez sporting a clear mouthpiece on his lower row of teeth last season, Howard was intrigued.
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July 21, 2013 | BY BOB VETRONE JR., Daily News Staff Writer vetronb@phillynews.com
WHEN HE WENT on the disabled list earlier this month with a torn meniscus in his left knee, Ryan Howard had just surpassed the 5,000 mark for career major league plate appearances. So we thought it convenient to break his career numbers down into five segments, each ending with the game where he accumulated another 1,000 PA. And, as suspected, the early Ryan Howard was by far the best, as virtually all of his numbers below show: Plate Bat. On-Base Slug. HR SO From To (Age)
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July 3, 2013 | By Dick Jerardi, Daily News Staff Writer
THE PHILLIES had been so sorry for so long that it really seemed their forever fate. Ryan Howard intervened. Your baseball team had been in the playoffs once from 1984 to 2006. They were mostly bad, usually boring and without imagination or inspiration. Ryan Howard intervened. He was the accidental Rookie of the Year in 2005. When Jim Thome got hurt, Howard got called up and went for 22 homers and 63 RBI in just 88 games. You wonder if Phillies management of that era ever would have understood what they had if Thome had not been injured.
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November 16, 2013 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
ORLANDO, Fla. - The man overseeing one of baseball's largest payrolls used the phrase "best bang for the buck" when discussing his aggressive pursuit of Marlon Byrd, a midlevel outfielder in a market teeming with talent. There is Jacoby Ellsbury, Shin-Soo Choo, Nelson Cruz, Carlos Beltran and Curtis Granderson. All will command massive sums of money. All are flawed, sure. But all would upgrade the Phillies' current outfield. And all are likely headed elsewhere with nothing but cursory interest from the Phillies before they pounced on Byrd, a 36-year-old one year removed from baseball purgatory.
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April 11, 2007
It wasn't hard to score Ryan Howard's appearance on the the "Late Show with David Letterman" last night. The Phillies first baseman hit a grand slam. Howard, while obviously more at home on the baseball diamond, more than held his own. Time after time, Letterman lobbed softball questions that the Phillies star hit out of the park to the delight and laughter of the audience. In one lighthearted exchange, Letterman discussed whether Ryan anticipated pitches. "You're a tremendous hitter," Letterman said.
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July 13, 2011
ON THE DAY AFTER the All-Star Game was played in Phoenix without Ryan Howard, this column is directed at the haters and bashers who have been coming out of the woodwork in larger numbers than usual. They are predictable as smog in a heat wave. They pretend to be knowledgable baseball fans, but trip themselves up every time because they are dead wrong. And egregiously stupid. I hear the reason why he was not voted into the All-Star Game by the fans - and Phillies fans basically ignored him while stuffing the ballot box for an injured Shane Victorino - is because the National League has all these great first basemen.
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October 16, 2008 | By Mike Jensen, Inquirer Staff Writer
LOS ANGELES - Professional at-bats, Charlie Manuel likes to call them. Ryan Howard kept getting them last night. Three singles, all to right field, an early run and RBI, followed by a professional walk. That postseason slump? That headline on Philly.com? The one that said, "Howard's vanishing act. " Take it off the Web site. On the night the Phillies punched their ticket to the 2008 World Series, Howard had himself some professional at-bats. Like the one in the third inning when the Phillies got a little cushion.
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April 18, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
CLIFF LEE likes to work quickly, so he made sure the conversation he had with Ryne Sandberg in the bottom of the eighth inning was a brief one. "How do you feel?" "I feel good. " And so Lee went back out for his ninth and final inning, despite having thrown 114 pitches in the eight innings that preceded it. Lee would allow back-to-back hits to begin the ninth, but he battled back and kept the two baserunners stranded. Sixteen days removed from one of the worst starts of his big-league career - a game that ended with him getting an improbable win on Opening Day - Lee saw those pesky baseball gods make things right with him. Last night in South Philly, Lee struck out 13 and walked one. He threw a career-high 128 pitches.
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April 18, 2014 | By Zach Berman, Inquirer Staff Writer
Cliff Lee ducked into the dugout in the middle of the ninth inning after throwing a career-high 128 pitches, allowing only one run, and striking out 13 batters - yet still facing a loss. Lee's complete game was spoiled by a lackluster Phillies offense that allowed him to be outdueled by Atlanta's Julio Teheran. The Braves righthander pitched a three-hit shutout in a 1-0 win over the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on Wednesday night while all the players wore No. 42 to honor Jackie Robinson.
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April 18, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
After being forced to leave his previous start because of a hernia-related injury, A.J. Burnett knew he had to be careful during his next bullpen session, making sure he didn't overstride and do any more damage. The veteran righthander tried a shorter stride and it worked. He employed the revamped move Thursday against the Atlanta Braves and it led to his best outing as a Phillie. Burnett kept the Braves off the scoreboard, allowing three hits over seven innings. Although he didn't figure in the decision at Citizens Bank Park, where the Phillies picked up a 1-0 victory on Ben Revere's RBI single in the eighth, he played a key role as his team took its lone win over the NL East leaders in this series.
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April 17, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
IF YOU'D LIKE to take a random sampling of what goes through the mind of a Phillies fan on a night when a game is rained out, turn to Twitter. One fan's suggestion via Twitter to right the 6-7 Phillies: bench Domonic Brown and Ryan Howard, who have become "automatic outs" in the batting order. Of course, any of us actually paying attention would point out that resting the guy who has homered in back-to-back games (Howard) is probably not the most strategic of moves. Bad timing, to put it kindly.
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April 16, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
LATE LAST spring, Domonic Brown sent shock waves through South Philly on a nightly basis when he went on a home-run barrage that would make Babe Ruth blush. From April 27 to June 8, Brown hit 17 home runs in a 39-game span. Eleven of those home runs came in a 2-week span at the end of that run. Despite taking 23 home runs into his first All-Star Game last July, Brown would hit just four more. He entered last night homerless in 43 games. "I think it's partly with how he's being pitched," manager Ryne Sandberg said before the game.
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April 15, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
Twice, A.J. Burnett felt pain from his groin Sunday morning while he threw a bullpen session. It did not linger. The 37-year-old righthander said everything went "better than expected. " Still, he harbors fears of a larger problem, and that is why Burnett will see a doctor Monday. His Wednesday start against Atlanta is still in question. "I feel good," Burnett said, "but I want my mind to be 100 percent. " The Phillies were concerned enough to limit David Buchanan's start Sunday at triple-A Lehigh Valley to 12 pitches in one inning.
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April 15, 2014 | By Sam Donnellon, Daily News Staff Writer
THE REAL STORY of this Phillies weekend was not Jimmy's Saturday night walkoff, or Chase's game-winning blast yesterday or even the 6-3 victory Friday. The real story was that Jake Diekman won a game as a middle-inning reliever, and looked comfortable in that spot. And that B.J. Rosenberg pitched perfect innings in two straight games, striking out Giancarlo Stanton in the middle of a statement seventh inning yesterday, then walking off the mound as if, well, he does this for a living.
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April 14, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
Ryan Howard attempted to explain the sensation, the one that manifested itself months after surgery. His soreness was eliminated. His strength was improved. Still, subconscious trauma festered. "So," Howard said, "there were times mentally where you feel one little twinge. 'Aww, is it about to happen again?' You have to compensate. " Saturday marked 28 months since Howard underwent extensive surgery to repair a ruptured left Achilles tendon. A few weeks ago, Howard agreed to speak about it because that was the past.
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April 14, 2014 | BY DAVID MURPHY, Daily News Staff Writer dmurphy@phillynews.com
YOU DON'T NEED numbers to understand the amount of talent that exists inside Jose Fernandez. But the numbers are fun. Heading into last night's game against the Phillies, the 21-year-old righthander had held opponents to one or zero runs in half of his 30 career starts. He'd held them under four runs in all but three starts. In laymen's terms, he's pretty darn good. But he wasn't good last night, and the Phillies took advantage, scoring two in the first inning, one in the third, and three in the sixth en route to a 6-3 win over the Miami Marlins.
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April 14, 2014 | By Marc Narducci, Inquirer Staff Writer
Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins drew incentive from the wrath of a fan, and it led to the second walk-off home run of his career. Rollins' two-out, solo home run to left field off Dan Jennings in the 10th inning gave the Phillies a 5-4 win over the Miami Marlins on Saturday at Citizens Bank Park. Afterward, he credited a heckler whom he didn't see but certainly heard. "Some fan in the stands was popping off," Rollins said. "I don't know where he was, but it was right behind the dugout and was close enough to yell, and it [ticked]
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