Ryan Howard hasn’t set the world on fire this season, yet. He started to make some noise last night though as the Phillies thumped the Miami Marlins behind Howards 3 H and 3 RBI last night.
Philly.com declared Ryan Howard’s contract to be one of the worst mistakes in baseball today, as the long standing love affair that the press in Philadelphia has had with Howard appears to be coming to an end.
Howard has been an MLB player now for 10 seasons including this year. We haven’t seen that talent in him that he had in his late 20’s however, and it seems since he has signed that $125M extension from the Phillies, that he isn’t the same player that he used to be at all. Maybe he’s found his pot of gold and now doesn’t care much about yearning to climb to greatness.
In 2008, Howard played in all 162 regular season games for the Phillies and smacked 48 HR, his efforts were a big reason the Phillies got where they went in 2008 which of course is when the won a World Championship.
It’s been a series of bad events for Howard, he only played 71 games for the Phils in 2012, and then lamely announced he dropped a bat weight on his foot towards the end of the season and was done for the season. It may have been a good thing, in 71 games last year, he struck out 99 times, he ended up with 14 HR. What happened to that ‘old Ryan’ that wanted to win at any cost. Did he join that ‘country club’ mentality that he has it made and it doesn’t matter anymore?
It seemed like he was trying to push his game to new areas with getting more hits for a while, then that seemed to fizzle, whatever the case, it’s a lot of this type of play (poor) that has made the Phillies a mediocre team. Howard is bubbling under now, he has 6 HR and 25 RBI, not exactly great numbers for a guy like Howard. He is kind of a streaky player though, he can start to put some more numbers on the board and that’s what the Phillies need him to do for the team. Maybe it started last night, maybe he’s out of that funk that he’s been in, we’ll have to see.