Tuesday night wasn’t your typical night for Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Tony Gwynn, Jr.
We all are aware of Gwynn, Jr. recently losing his father, baseball icon Tony Gwynn, Sr., on the 16th of this month. The younger Gwynn was placed on the team’s bereavement list and joined his Phillies teammates yesterday.
Not sure he expected this as he approached the plate for a pinch-hitting appearance during the game’s 8th inning…
The result of the at-bat was a simple groundout to first. As heard on the video and noted in Zolecki’s article, Miami Marlins catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia gave Gwynn, Jr. some extra time prior to the at-bat.
Gwynn needed those few extra seconds and extra pitches as the first two pitches of the AB were balls.
The result of the game was a Phils 7-4 win over the Miami Marlins. With the win, the Phillies were able to stay 6 games back of the Washington Nationals in the NL East. The Nats pulled off a 4-2, 16-inning win in Milwaukee.
But after the game, the focus was somewhat shifted to Gwynn, Jr.
Here’s part of Gwynn, Jr’s response (via Todd Zolecki of MLB.com):
“Needless to say, it was pretty awesome,” Gwynn said. “Made the at-bat a little more difficult, had to fight the emotion and the tears and stuff like that. But that’s why guys who play here like to play here. When things are going well or regardless of whether they’re going bad or good, I think the fans stay behind us. Much appreciated by the Gwynn family.”
Philly fans get a lot of flak for their conduct. Many of the stories have been told many times, so I’ll spare you all of those details. This was one instance where all the negative we have heard and read in regards to Philly fans can easily be forgiven.
Classy stuff, Philly fans.