12 Biggest Surprises of the 2011 Phillies Season

To the average person, this Phillies season may have seemed pretty predictable. Excellent pitching and an early play-off berth were two things that the Phillies were expected to do from the get go. But if there’s one thing that I love the most about baseball, it would be to expect the unexpected. From Worley’s successful rookie year to all the closers with only a few blown saves, this season has kept us on the edge of our seats. With that said, the ballgirls all voted on their favorite surprises of this season. I think you’ll have no trouble adding your own ideas to our short list.

1. A victory that took 19 innings!! – Moira

2. Who can deny that the weather this season has been more extreme than most fans have seen in a while?? – Sammy

3. I would have to say Hunter Pence’s “proverb” being such a phenom!

4. Utley’s strong performance after his serious knee injury…I almost forgot he was ever hurt! – Emily

5. Watching Valdez pitch during a 19 inning game with Katelyn on my last training day! – Maureen

6. Throwback…. Wilson Valdez getting the win, as a pitcher! – Gen

7. I never expected it to get any more bizarre than seeing Oswalt play left field last season, who was I to second guess. My favorite most surprising Phillies’s moment this season is when Wilson Valdez recorded his first MLB win as a pitcher. It happened early on in the season, but this one still astonishes me every time I think about it. He certainly made a show of it – shaking off pitches and a drilling batter, but way to get it done! – Patti

8. I’d have to say that the biggest surprise to me this season hasn’t been any of the incredible performances by the players but rather the weather! I remember waking up the morning of Opening Day and seeing SNOW on the ground!!! I immediately text Bonnie and asked her what we should wear on the field, thankfully as the day went on the sun came out and it warmed things up….just a little. In July the Philadelphia are experience an excessive heat wave which left the guys playing in 100+ degree weather for a weekend. Then in the month of August we had 3 games rained out, two of which were due to hurricane Irene, needless to say the weather has been unpredictable and has kept everyone on their toes. – Tori

9. I’m not sure if this really counts, but I think that the biggest surprise of the 2011 season for me, happened before the season even began. In the off-season, the Phillies pulled off the shocking trade that returned Cliff Lee to the Phillies for the 2011 season. I tend to be addicted to any and all trade news involving the Phillies, but this rumor just seemed impossible to me. So I gave up hope and went to bed, only to wake up to the news of Cliff Lee’s return to the Phillies and the first pleasant surprise of the 2011 season! – Jamie

10. Acquiring Hunter Pence! – Bridgette

11. Not that I didn’t think she had it in her…and not that this should be much of a surprise, but my vote goes to an awesome grab by Patti earlier in the season. We were playing Huston, up 2-0 in the bottom of the 4th when Angel Sanchez nailed one down the 3rd baseline. Patti, who doesn’t even flinch, ever so gracefully picks up her chair and fields it on one hop. The crowd proceeds to cheer as she hands the ball over to a young fan and curtseys before sitting back down in her chair. I included a screen shot and I know it’s a little blurry…but it’s because the ball/Patti was moving so fast! What do you expect?! – Becca

12. Brian Schneider’s great winning record when he’s behind homeplate (24-3 at the end of August). I’m sure Worley’s awesome rookie year helped play a part in all these wins, as well! – Bonnie

Do You Have What it Takes?……

……..If so, we want to hear from you!!

Sadly it’s time to say goodbye to our Veteran Ballgirls and welcome some new ones.

We are currently accepting applications for 2012 Phillies Ballgirls. Send us a 2 minute long DVD highlighting your softball experience and why you should be one of the next Phillies Ballgirls along with a resume by October 1, 2011.

Send applications to:

The Phillies
One Citizen Bank Way
Philadelphia, Pa 19148
Attn: Ballgirls

Tryouts will be held in Novemeber 2011 depending upon the post season schedule and will consist of a verbal on-camera interview, written Phillies knowledge test, and softball skills (fielding, hitting, throwing, running).

Ever Wanted to Be a Phillies Ballgirl?

Do you LOVE the Phillies?…..Have softball experience?…..Enjoy volunteer work?
Then the Phillies wanna hear from you!!!

The Phillies are looking to hire a staff of ballgirls who can represent the organization in the community as well as perform duties on the field. Minimum age of 18 years old is required to apply.

If interested, please send resume with a two minute DVD highlighting your softball experience and explaining why you should be a Phillies Ballgirl to the address listed below. No phone calls please. Resumes must be received by October 1, 2011. If you are qualified you will notified to participate in our tryout at Citizens Bank Park. Tryout date is pending postseason schedule.

Please send applications to:

The Phillies
One Citizen Bank Way
Philadelphia, Pa 19148
Attn: Ballgirl Applicant

Donna’s Dugout Charity Softball Game with the Phillies Ballgirls

I would have to say that the best part of being a Philadelphia
Phillies Ballgirl is the numerous opportunities you have to give back
to the community. As ballgirls, we strive to be role models on, and
off the field, so we are both honored and thrilled to have been
invited to work with a group such as Donna’s Dugout.

Donna was diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) on June 22, 2005
and since then has made it her mission to raise funds that would go
towards patient services. Funds that would help people who live with
ALS and research to hopefully one day find treatments and a cure for
ALS. Through numerous events throughout the year, Donna’s Dugout
raises money and we could not be happier to have done our part to help
through our participation in what has become an annual game vs. the
Allentown Patriots Old-Timers. To learn more and find out how you can
contribute please don’t hesitate to visit

http://www.donnasdugout.org/index.html

Kristina:
The Phillies Ballgirls vs. The Allentown Old-Timers is always one of
my favorite events during the year. It’s so wonderful getting
together with all the girls and playing one of our favorite games,
softball! The game was very close and enjoyable, although the
ballgirls did end up being defeated by the Old-Timers. I felt the
best part of the day was Donna’s speech at the end expressing how
thankful she was for everyone, players and fans, to come out and
support the cause. I would like to thank Donna for having us
participate and allowing us to enjoy the delicious food that was
prepared after the game.

Bridgette:
Playing against the Old-Timers last summer was one of my favorite
games of the year so I was definitely looking forward to this year’s
rematch. They may look like easy opponents but don’t let that fool
you, those guys still got it. While we were playing for fun and a
great cause, it was still a close game that the Old-Timers managed to
get over on us! We were good sports about it though and were happy to
be there for such a great event.
I played intramural softball in college, but haven’t played
competitively since high school. I love getting to still play ball
with the girls because there’s a lot less pressure riding on our games
which allows us all to have more fun.

Brittany:
I love playing in the Donna’s Dugout charity softball game and playing
the Old-Timers makes it even better! Playing for Donna’s Dugout is
such a honor and I am so happy that I am able to participant in it. I
am always so impressed with how well those Old-Timers can play.
Although they are 60+ years old they play so well (so well that we
lost by one run, yes that’s right you read correct- we lost to the Old
Timers). As I was admiring them playing baseball, it makes me wonder
how long have these guys been playing the sport? And how many of them
played at college level or even higher?! I just hope that when I am
their age I can play softball at least half as decent as them!

Bonnie:
Hands down, my favorite softball game of the year is for Donna’s
Dugout. I was especially impressed with the Old-Timers and how much
spark they brought to the field. They were sliding and diving all over
the place! They sure know how to play. Everyone at this event has so
much fun and we are so excited to help out this great cause. You just
can’t help but put this game on the top of your list of favorite ballgirl memories.

Fans Can Say The Darndest Things……

Last week, I started following Hunter Pence on Twitter @HunterPence3, and I’ve enjoyed the fan pics that have been posted to show support to our new favorite right fielder. I have yet to create my own sign and bring to a Phillies game, but some of the ballgirls have definitely inspired me with their posterboard craftiness. Whether it’s a sign to show your support or to have some fun with the opposing team, creative signs at sports games are what keep us glued to the tv during commercial breaks. I found this Pence sign to be one of my personal favorites from his Twitter page. Even Pence tweeted back that he got a laugh out it!

Leanne

About mid-September last year, my friend and I got tickets to a Phillies home game in Section 105, directly behind Jayson Werth. I think I might have overheard an announcer at some point referring to Werth as Mr. September – but I can’t remember what exactly put this idea in my head. All I know is Jayson Werth was on fire that month. So, next thing I know I’m making a sign with the head of Jayson Werth superimposed on the body of young Arnold Schwarzenegger (see picture), the entire time just laughing at the absurdity of this picture. So we show up at the game with this ridiculous picture of a Jayson Werth/Schwarzenegger combo and had people cracking up. Everyone in our section loved the poster. It got tons of laughs which was our #1 goal, and we were pretty sure that Werth saw it too. Unfortunately we never made it on PhanaVision or on TV (goal #2), despite the attempts of everyone around us, trying to get the camera crews’ attention.

But, the story doesn’t end there. We got tickets to a Phillies/Nationals game for later that month in Washington, and it just happened to be the night after the Phillies clinched the National League East title. We brought our Werth sign again, but this time (thanks to Roy Halladay) we updated our sign with “It’s Always Phunner in Philadelphia” on the back. Since Werth wasn’t in the game that night, we kept our “Phunner” side of the poster showing, and lucked out this time. We got phone calls and texts from people at home watching the game that our sign (and us) made it on TV – not once, not twice, but 3 times!

So, considering fans current obsession with a certain Phillies right-fielder, it only makes “Pence” that he be the subject of so many clever signs (the “only makes Pence” sign is my current favorite, by the way).

Moira

My family are not ones to usually make a creative sign and wave it around frantically in hopes of making the big screen, but one day that changed. Manny Ramirez’s peculiar actions back in Game 4 of the 2009 National League Championship Series must have really intrigued my parents because next thing I knew I found my mom coloring in bubble letters of two different posters. My mom did the artwork while my dad had the fun job of alternating posters throughout Game 5 and laughing with other Phillies fans as they read what his signs said. My parents had such a fun time with it, but I have not seen a poster since. We will have to wait and see what is poster worthy next…maybe something in this upcoming playoff season?!


Bridgette

Craftiness is my specialty. That being said, I’ve made quite a few sports related signs in my day. My first memory of bringing a sign into a Phils game dates back to the days of Veterans Stadium. I believe I was in about fifth grade at the time when I made a sign that I held up after every strike out made by a Phillies pitcher. On the front it read, “Today’s game is brought to you by the letter…” and on the back had a giant, “K,” on it (in reference to the phrase often used on Sesame Street). Pretty corny, I know. Most recently I made a set of signs for my cousin Greg, who at the time was pitching for the Padres and was making his first appearance in his hometown against the Phils. My mom, worried about getting boo’s for supporting a player from the opposing team, made sure it was clear on the sign that Greg, although a Padre, was a local boy and a member of a family of Phillies fans. The most memorable signs that I’ve witnessed at both the Vet and Citizens Bank Park would have to be those from The Wolf Pack, the Duck Pond, The Padilla Flotilla, and the many other groups that have inhabited the upper deck. I’m excited to see what creative ideas the fans will come up with during these next few home stands, many of which I’m sure will include the quote from Hunter Pence that everyone has been tweeting about, “Good game, let’s go eat!”


Katelyn

One of my favorite things to look for at a Phillies game is how creative our Philadelphia fans can be. Something I enjoy even MORE is seeing all the support from Phillies fans when we are on the road! Phillies fans are the most dedicated out there, and I love to see all of the signs in different cities. Two of my favorite posters were spotted during a Pirates/Phillies game and the second during a Padres/Phillies game. There is nothing better than a little friendly smack talk!

Samantha

The day of my first Phillies game, I made a sign that read “GO PHILLIES!” It was made on a tiny piece of red construction paper, a last minute idea. At every game I attend, I look out for creative signs to see what our fans have to say. One day, I was excited to work Green Team so that I could see Hunter Pence on the field for the first time. As I looked around the stands, there were many Phillies fans with signs. I got a good laugh at a sign that struck me the most. This particular sign was in honor of our newest Phillie Hunter Pence. “Welcome to Pence-ylvania,” read the sign that caught my eye. I thought that the sign was very funny and creative.

Emily

Recently at a game at CBP I looked up at the jumbotron and saw a little girl holding up a sign that said “Future Ballgirl”. It reminded me of when I was younger and looked up to the Ballgirls so much. It was so heartwarming to see!

Becca

I love all the clever signs that appeared around the park when Matt Stairs used to play for the Phillies. My all time favorite would have to be “In case of Emergency, USE STAIRS!” I think I particularly like it because there was definitely a few emergencies in 2008 he helped us out of!

Mo

My younger brother made a poster about 10-15 years ago for Flyers/Devils playoff game. He spent hours on it using only orange and black colors. The sign said, “Flyers rule and Devils drool”. Not too original but for an elementary school kid he saw this as a great dig to the Devils and was very proud of himself. He had his poster under his arm and he and my mother left for the game. When they arrived home after the game the poster was nowhere in sight. I immediately asked him where it was and he yelled at me something I couldn’t understand and stormed off. My mom had to translate his screaming and explain that because the poster wasn’t considered a nice thing to say a security guard had taken it away from him. Now that my brother is in his 20s, whenever the Flyers and Devils face off, we always remind him of his famous poster.

Victoria

Two summers ago when I graduated from undergrad one of my gifts from my parents was a pair of Phillies tickets in Section 116 5 rows behind the Phillies dugout. I was so excited and could not wait for the game. I’ve ALWAYS wanted to dance on the dugout with the famous Phillie Phanatic himself so I knew that this would be my best chance to be seen and that I had to make a clever sign. I didn’t end up dancing with the Phanatic :( but I had an awesome time at the game and little did I know but 6 months later I would be trying out and becoming a Phillies ballgirl, the following summer my dream came true and I was dancing on the dugout with the Phillie Phanatic!!!

Softball Showdown

Have you been looking for a chance to come see the Phillies Ballgirls play in an actual softball game?…….Well this weekend is your chance to!!
We have two games going on this weekend, the first of which is at the Allentown Patriots Park (1026 St. John Street, Allentown, Pa) on Saturday, August 20th. The game starts at 5pm and we will be around after the game to sign cards and talk to anyone who wants to know more about our softball experience.
Our second game is in beautiful Stone Harbor, NJ on Sunday, August 21st at 2pm. There will be special guests as our announcers and umpires, and the Flyers Ice Girls will be there joining in on the fun with us. The best part is this game is FREE!! The baseball field is located on 80th Street in Stone Harbor, NJ. But wait……there’s more!!! Come join us for an AFTER PARTY at the Golden Inn located on 78th Street and Dune from 5-7pm. All proceeds benefit area charities through the Comcast-spectacor and Phillies Charities.
Don’t miss out on these great opportunities to see your very own Phillies Ballgirls live in action on the softball field :)

We still have 2011 dates available, so if your team is up for the challenge of taking on the ballgirls please contact Michele DeVicaris (MDEVICARIS@phillies.com) for more information.

Elvis Pays a Visit to Citizens Bank Park

Last Sunday was a day to remember at Citizens Bank Park when my brother Mickey was given the opportunity to dance on the field with the Phanatic to his favorite artist of all time: Elvis Presley. My brother Mickey has Down syndrome, and he is the coolest person I know! Mickey’s been a huge fan of Elvis ever since he saw an Elvis impersonator when he was just 8 years old. Now 19, Mickey lives and breathes the work of Elvis Presley. Every single night he practices his dance moves and vocals to just about any Elvis song you can think of. He has even taken on some very Elvis-like qualities in the fact that he’s a bit of a ladies man (just ask any of the Ballgirls how many times he’s said something along the lines of “hey pretty darlin’” to them)! Needless to say, Mickey is quite the entertainer, which is why it was so amazing for him to get a chance to show off what he’s got in front of thousands of people!

I was lucky enough to be working on the field during Mickey’s performance, which was awesome. If someone had said to me only two years ago, “hey Emily, just so you know one day Mickey is going to dance with the Phantic at a Phillies game and you’re going to be a Ballgirl on the field watching him” I would have told them they’re nuts! It was definitely a surreal experience. Be sure to check out the clip of my brother “rockin’ out” with the Phanatic! (http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=10150403417543625&oid=35893045767&comments)
Thank you, thank you very much (I just had to get a cheesy Elvis line in there somewhere!)

Who the Ballgirls are following on Twitter

This past Home Run Derby took the game of baseball to a whole new level as we followed our favorite players on Twitter feeds to get their thoughts on the game and enjoy their light-hearted trash talking with each other. My personal favorite tweet from the Derby was from our new favorite Phillies player Hunter Pence.

With Twitter and other social media channels being a great way to stay on top your favorite sports teams, I asked the ballgirls who they follow, like, or subscribe to. Hopefully, all of you non-tweeters out there will have no choice but to sign up after finding out what you’re missing out on!

Sammy
I just recently made a Twitter account and am still trying to figure the whole thing out! I have started to use it to keep up with sports by following the official Phillies and Eagles sites. I also follow the Fight On State page to stay tuned in to all my Penn State sports news! Even though I’d like to consider myself up-to-date with the new technology fads, I’d still rather watch a few minutes of SportsCenter instead!

Becca
While I don’t have a Twitter, I do have a facebook and of course I follow the Philadelphia Phillies page and the Phillies Ballgirls page! Also, I hesitantly admit that I do love to follow anything and anyone that reports on the San Francisco Giants. I particularly love watching “The Franchise” on Showtime and recommend it to any baseball fan, regardless of which team you’re a fan of!

Jess
MLB and ESPN

Patti
I don’t follow anyone on twitter, but I get “tweets” in the form of texts, emails, and facebook chats from those ballgirls that do!

Moira
I’m new to the twitter world but I have found that Erin Andrews gives great sports updates and pictures!

Victoria
I don’t tweet/follow anyone on Twitter, in fact I don’t even know if I fully understand the whole Twitter thing but I sure hear enough about it. I have an ESPN and Phillies app on my phone that gives me updates when there’s breaking news so don’t think I’m completely out of the loop.

Brittany
I don’t have a twitter account but I “like” the Phillies and Sportsnation (one of my favorite shows) on Facebook. I also do weekly check-ups on some blog websites.

Jamie
It just so happens that this is my favorite time of the twitter year, the #tradedeadline! I initially joined around this time last year to get the most up-to-date news at the MLB trade deadline. The anticipation of the Phillies 2010 big move was addicting. It was no secret that the Phillies were looking to add to their starting rotation, and I couldn’t wait to hear the news. I began by following @espn, @Phillies, @philaphillies, @ToddZolecki, @Jaysonst, @MLB, and any baseball/Phillies reporter that I could find. After plenty of rumors and speculation, I remember reading the breaking news on twitter that the Phillies had made a move for Roy Oswalt. It proved to be a great addition to the Phillies starting rotation and a true sign of the Phillies desire to win in 2010 and years to come. This year, the 2011 #tradedeadline has been just as exciting. The end of the NFL lockout has added to the twitter excitement as July comes to a close. NFL teams are scrambling to sign free agents now that a new deal is in place, and the Phillies have made apparent their desire to obtain a right-handed bat, as has been much talked about throughout the 2011 season thus far. I was so excited to hear the news that they had made the trade for Hunter Pence and read tweets from other elated fans. In addition to the baseball tweeters above, some of my favorite people to follow now for Philly sports information are @CrossingBroad, @The700Level, @HighCheese, and athletes like @JimmyRollins and @MikeStutes. Needless to say, the end of the NFL lockout and the approach of the MLB #tradedeadline has had my twitter feed on a constant update.

Bridgette
Having recently joined the nest on Twitter I’m still learning the ins and outs of it all. At first I only followed a few close friends/family, musicians, and performers such as Reverand Run, Kanye West, and Jay Z. Now that I’m expanding my circle, I’ve delved more into the sports, and specifically the Phillies arena. I still get most of my info from the guys on Baseball Tonight, however for even more up-to-date info I’ve began to follow a few groups such as BestPhilsBlogs and the official Phillies twitter page. Both keep me informed on what’s going on in MLB when I’m on the go.

Maureen
Blake shelton is mine!

Bonnie
I follow @Phillies and @JimmyRollins and other popular sports bloggers to stay on top of baseball news. The one page I find funny, even though Pete Orr doesn’t actually write these tweets, is @PeteOrrFacts. I’d love to know who writes these clever one-liners, but whoever it is, keeps me entertained with every Twitter update.

Katelyn
I follow @Philaphillies of course! I have the tweets go directly to my phone so I can get all the latest updates.

Getting in the Christmas in July Spirit

People may think that wearing bright red velour outifts and matching hats in 100 degree weather wouldn’t be on top of their wish lists, but we love Christmas in July so much and what this event does for the community that a lot of us ballgirls took time off from our day jobs to come help out. Thanks to all the fans who brought in gifts that will be delivered to some great kids at the Ford Pal Center , DuPont Hospital for Children, Youth Services Inc, and Children’s Crisis Treatment Center . As always, we got into the spirit of the season and enjoyed being Santa’s little helpers for a day.

We split up and and collected toys at each of the park gates

Samantha and a few fans who donated their favorite toys for the cause

Almost all of us

We always look forward to the seventh inning when Phanta Claus dances with us to “All I Want for Christmas is You.”

Charlie’s Angels and Santa’s Little Helpers Come to Citizen Bank Park

Although the Phils have been on the road much of the month of July, we have been very busy preparing for two BIG nights at the park. On Friday July, 22nd we will be turning back the clocks to 1984 to help the Phillies celebrate Retro Night. While the players sport the 1984 burgundy pinstripes and caps on the field, we will be rockin’ classic 80’s attire as well as some throw back ballgirl outfits and go-go boots. Come dressed in your 80’s best!

On Monday July 25th, we will be hosting the 5th annual Phillies Ballgirls Christmas in July Toy Drive. Playing Santa’s helpers for the day is one of our favorite events throughout the season. We will be stationed at every gate starting at 11:30am and will remain there till the 3rd inning to collect new, unwrapped toys for less fortunate children. This year we will be making toy drop offs at the Ford Pal Center, DuPont Hospital for Children, Youth Services Inc, and Children’s Crisis Treatment Center. As a thank you for all your donations we will be teaming up with the Phanatic in the 7th inning for a little performance. Thank you in advance for all your support!!

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